Meet the Press: WBB NCAA Second Round vs. Florida

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  Head Coach Kim Mulkey

On Florida:
"My impressions before I even picked up a stat sheet to make sure I knew who each of them was, I obviously had done a little bit of homework cause you didn't know who was gonna win the game. But when you have five seniors, I just thought that team played with a sense of urgency. And what I mean by that is they played extremely hard on both ends of the floor. I thought you could sometimes play excited and undisciplined and have a sense of urgency. I thought they played with a purpose, whether they felt like they should have been seeded higher or they felt like they shouldn't have been mentioned as one of the last four in. I don't know but I thought their basketball team from the very beginning until the horn sounded, played with a sense of urgency."

On school's reputation nationally:
"I don't know if I'm comfortable talking about it starting with me. I think our national championship erased a lot of negative publicity from what had happened with men's basketball. I think timing in all of our lives is so important. The timing of me leaving Louisiana Tech to go to Baylor. The timing of when we won the national championship. The timing of the Heisman trophy and men's basketball doing well and women's basketball. I think that you can talk that it started with me but it really started with the university. You have to have the resources. You have to have the administration understand sports and understand the doors it opens to the world. And in return, it opens to our ability to recruit students to Baylor. And we have been very fortunate. I think I'm now in my third president. And I've only been there 12 years, but we've been very fortunate that the leaders we have had at Baylor understand and value not just athletics but women's basketball and women's sports in general. Our softball team made it to the World Series last year. My daughter was part of that. I was in the stands. Soccer made it to the first NCAA tournament. You know I'm leaving a lot of teams and coaches out, but do your homework. It's not what Kim Mulkey has done at Baylor. I'm just too modest to even think I was hired to build a winning program. And that's all I've tried to do, is try to win and make Baylor proud and Baylor alums proud. And I think we are doing our part."

On if winning creates a "monster" that could come back to haunt:
"The first national championship -- actually probably before that, I think some of my quotes during that time I was saying we may be creating a monster we can't feed...okay. We may not win a national championship this year and someone will write an article that we're failures. So what? You know we go to try and win a basketball game and we hope that we put our university in a position that they're proud. In athletics there are disappointing moments. We were disappointed last year. But life goes on, and we regroup. And I just want Brittney Griner and Odyssey Sims really more so than any other player in our locker room, because I would venture to say every other player in our locker room has won some kind of championship, as in a state championship and a Big 12 championship. So they have won at the respective highest level, high school championships. Brittney and Odyssey have never won even a state championship and I just want them to feel what it feels like. And the joy I get from winning, it's not a joy that ever gets old for me but, I don't say this arrogantly, I've done it. My joy now is to watch Baylor fans and watch Baylor people get excited and feel like we are running with the big dogs. And they have never had that before. And I take great pride in that."

On getting every team's best shot because of being No. 1 team:
"Well I'll go over scouting reporting. We did that last night. We'll do more of that in practice today. I don't know if I have to ever repeat that. I think that they know because we have played 35 basketball games. It's amazing to me maybe how resilient we are in understanding that there are going to be lots of teams that play their best game against you and you've still been able to keep a perfect record. I don't know if I ever have to use that as motivation. There's so much social media out there where these kids read things that I don't know about until they bring it to my attention. We'll go out and we'll work on things that we they think they will do and things we will do and go play."

On if she gets to enjoy March Madness and watch any basketball:
"Well, I watch basketball. I pretty much...we have our routine. You guys know me well enough to know we are pretty regimented in what we do and time is important. The bus drivers are even learning that. When we're not focusing on basketball right now, I'm watching basketball and I watched the men's game the other night. I'm screaming at the TV and giving my suggestions to Scott and by god he finally listened. And I just knew we had that repor through the television. I just watch basketball. It's a fun time of year. The disappointing thing for me right now is I'm not home watching Kramer play baseball. He's had some games and he's needed his mom there cause they got drilled in one game and I'm not there. I don't like that. I don't like not being there. So that's the hard part right now is that I've always had my kids with me or I've been at their games but during the playoffs I can't work my schedule to be there. Otherwise I'm in the room and working out in the mornings and watching ball games...I know that's what ya'll are doing right? Ya'll watching just as much as I am right? Tell the truth."

On being in Bowling Green, Ohio and impressions thus far:
"Well I've never been to Bowling Green, Ohio. far is Cleveland? I've been to Cleveland, but I've never been to Bowling Green. First of all, I'd like to say like we say in the South that the hospitality has been awesome. I think this is the first time Bowling Green has hosted an NCAA women's tournament and sometimes you have little glitches and things that don't go well. But I think they have done extremely well from the parking to the instructions to where you go and just pleasantness and greeting people. And that's been impressive. I thought the crowd yesterday obviously was an Ohio State crowd but it was sold out. The building I haven't seen the building other than to get off the bus, walk the hallway and go to the locker room and floor. So I don't know how it's laid out or anything but I am impressed to the extent it's ran very smoothly."

On Baylor men's basketball team:
"Oh, I'll tell you. It's good. It's all good. I'm not questioning any coaching. I am Scott Drew's biggest fan and you all need to write good articles about him. His sister played ball in this state, did she not? His family is a wonderful, wonderful family and it's a remarkable story how they raised their three children because they are the most optimistic positive people you will ever be around. After losses and things that are happening in their life...Scott is a zone coach and I'm a man-to-man coach. And the cutest thing, well not cute, it's cute now. But he's playing more man-to-man now and I'm loving it. But the other night I was screaming you need to go to a zone. You need to go to a zone and keep em' out of the paint. And he did and it won the game for him. I was telling one of his assistants actually this morning I said "okay, I said was so proud of ya'll for making a change right there to a zzzone." I got that word out of my mouth. But it really did. It won the game for them."

  Junior Forward Brittney Griner

On Florida:
"It was a physical game. They crash the boards and like to get out and run. It was a good game."

On all the buzz surrounding Baylor's athletic program:
"It's a great time to be a Bear right now. Great to be on campus, everybody is excited. The community is, fellow classmates, just really exciting time to be at Baylor.

On Sunday's win over UC Santa Barbara:
"No, it was a good game, it was good for our bench, everybody got playing time, starters got rest and it was a good game you know. It's in the past now and let's focus on this next game and get prepared for it."

  Junior Forward Destiny Williams

On getting everyone's best shot:
"For us we want everyone's best shot. It only helps personally to be a better team and help us with things we need to work on. Being number one doesn't really mean anything, it's an honor and we'll take it along the way. But we just have to go out there. At the end of the day we're blessed for all the wins and we're blessed for all the accolades but focused for our bigger mission."

On being close to home and having family be able to watch her play:
"It's a blessing pretty much all I can say. It's not often I get to have family members come and support me being so far away from home. So I've taken up all the tickets I can from my teammates and using them wisely and just having fun with them while I can. Coach Mulkey is doing a great job of giving us extra time with our family members. She knows how it is she's a mother herself so it's great."

On how focus has been intensified during NCAA Tournament:
"As you see we came ready to play Sunday. We were anxious to play since last week and now we're anxious for the next game because we love basketball and we're trying to reach that ultimate goal and it seems like it's going by slowly but as a team we're taking it day by day and not rushing things. We're working on little things and we're really excited."

On Florida and their confidence:
"Florida has good post players, they're supposed to be confident, as well as Baylor having a lot of post players that are good. So, we just go out and do our best and to contain their post players to as few rebounds and points as possible and try to distract them with our defense and hopefully that will hurt their offense. But we have a 6'8" post player and she's going to do what she has to do to help us come out with that win."



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