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Billy Kennedy Weekly Press Conference

December 18, 2013
Courtesy: Texas A&M Athletics
(photo: Texas A&M Athletics)

COLLEGE STATION--Billy Kennedy and several players met with the press on Wednesday at Texas A&M's weekly basketball press conference at Reed Arena.



On facing a talented Oklahoma team…

“They are really a good offensive team, one of the top in the country. I think they are averaging 88 points per game. Last night (against UT-Arlington), they scored 91 points. We are going to have to do a good job of guarding them. I think we’ve gotten better offensively and sometimes when you focus on that you give up something defensively. We’ve got to get to where we can shore up our defense.”

On finding a balance between offensive and defense…

“We’re looking to find our balance and establishing our identity. We wanted it to be defense and I think if you look at the last couple years we’ve been pretty good defensively but not very good offensively or at rebounding the ball. We’ve got to get back to finding our true identity and hopefully it starts on the defensive end.”

On developing a rotation on the court…

“I like the five that are starting right now. I think J-Mychal (Reese), Fabyon (Harris) and Antwan (Space) coming off the bench have been fairly consistent. We’ve got to get some more consistency from a couple other guys but I really like those eight at this point.”

On having time between games in December…

“We need the practice time. I know our guys are tired of practicing but as a coach we really need the practice time because we’re not where we need to be with some fundamental things, defensively or offensively with so many new guys. We’ll be ready to play on Saturday and really tired of practicing, since we’ve actually gone two-a-days a couple times this week. I’m sure our guys will be glad to see somebody else.”

On playing Oklahoma at Toyota Center…

“This is a big game, playing in the Toyota Center. Oklahoma was an NCAA Tournament team last year. Our guys are familiar with their roster, having played them last year in Oklahoma City. It’s going to be the biggest game of our season up to this point and we’ll be excited to play. We’ve got to play smart because I think we’re going to play really hard. Offensively is where I’m a little bit concerned, we are going to have to play disciplined against their pressure. We’ve got to know when to take good shots; when to attack, when not to attack … We’ll be exited, we’ve just got to be poised at times. Discipline and poise are going to be big keys in this game for us.”


On the team’s improvement since struggling at the Corpus Christi Challenge…

“I feel like in the past two games we’ve improved. We’ve been at home so it’s been a comfortable environment. It comes with being a new team that’s learning how to play against new opponents and different style opponents. I feel like we’ve improved during this time off that we’ve had away from school. We’ve been able to focus, have a defensive practice, an offensive practice and times where we can switch our brains and focus on different parts of the game. We’re really learning how to play with each other. Coach is really big on tempo and when to run a play, when to set a screen or when to cut off a screen; so we’ve been really focusing on all those little details that will help us against Oklahoma.”

On where the team is at this point in the year…

“I feel like we’re in a good spot because we know our strengths and weaknesses. We know ourselves pretty well and know that we need to improve in some areas. At times become more unselfish and lay our bodies on the line for loose balls, things like that. I think we are farther along than the last few years because we know our strengths and weaknesses and how to play to our strengths … I told some of the guys early on in the year that I fell in love with this team. Not only are we talented but we work hard and are really competitive in practice.”


On adjusting to the starting lineup…

“I’ve gotten a little more comfortable out there. My teammates have really helped me, especially in practice as I’ve made the transition. I’m trying to do everything Coach needs me to do – be aggressive, be comfortable out there and just play, have fun.”

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