After falling from the ranks of the unbeaten in Wednesday’s 71-68 loss to Georgetown, Rick Pitino said his team would not hold a press conference prior to Saturday’s matchup against Kentucky. From a coaching standpoint, it’s probably a wise move to not put your players through another round of questioning and instead have get it over with while still steaming about their first loss of the season.
What it does mean though for those with an insatiable thirst for all things ‘Cats-Cards is these may be the only quotes from the Louisville side prior to Saturday. Here’s what coach Pitino and the Louisville players had to say about Kentucky:
“Well I think Kentucky is the better basketball team right now. Running up and down and trying to outscore Kentucky would be a futile attempt to try and get a ‘W.’ I think if you play half-court basketball you’ll take yourself out if it’s something you’re not used to.”
- Coach Rick Pitino on what style and tempo he’d consider against Kentucky
“I love to go against good point guards. It’s just something that’s always there. Kentucky is a great school. They have great players and they’re definitely the most talented team in the nation. We’ve just got to come in there and play team ball and continue to execute.”
- Peyton Siva on his matchup with highly regarded freshman Marquis Teague
“Pretty much every guy on their team is, I guess, a pro so we just have to go out and play as hard to get back to where we were last week.”
- Chris Smith on what impresses him about Kentucky
“It’s a very hard place to play. I’ll just leave it at that.”
- Senior Kyle Kuric on the environment at Rupp.
“When I moved to Kentucky I got the feel for it and understanding of it. It’s serious. Real serious.”
- Freshman and Ohio native Chane Behanan on learning about the rivalry. Behanan moved from Cincinnati to finish his high school career at Bowling Green (Ky.) High School.
“He’s played on the road at Butler but that’s not going to be the same. We just need to get him focused like everybody else. It’s not just him being a freshman; it’s everybody. Some guys haven’t played there, some have.”
- Kuric on preparing Behanan and the rest of the team to play in Rupp.
“Well, we’ve got to watch a lot of film. Our guys haven’t seen Kentucky play. I don’t think they realize how good they are.”
- Pitino on preparing his team for Kentucky.
- Kuric when asked “How sick are you of hearing about this game?”
Photo: Courtesy University of Louisville