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Baylor News Conference Quotes

March 23, 2014

 Head Coach Kim Mulkey

On what to expect from Cal Monday night:
"They're not the same team that made it to the Final Four last year, just like we're not the same team. They lost a lot of talent; we lost a lot of talent. They're very, very athletic. They rebound the ball extremely well. I think that we're going to have to do a tremendous job of keeping them in front of us and out of the paint. At the same time they've got an outstanding point guard and post play, and that's similar to what we are. We've got to defend much better than we did against Western Kentucky. You can't allow that many points against a good team. Cal is more of a conventional look like we are. We think we will match up better with them probably than we did with Western Kentucky."

On Nina Davis's big game Saturday:
"I'm not surprised at anything that Nina Davis does. After watching her for a month when the season started, I've told you many times that my concern was if she could get her shot off at that size and if she could defend inside at that size. Nina has done it against the best in the country. I wasn't surprised at all yesterday with what she did."

On getting the rust out in the first game to play better in the second:
"It's hard to gauge that from afar. TV can be misleading. I thought there were things that we did well yesterday. Looking at it from a television screen, the thing I was most critical of was our defense, but I'm not going to harp on it. We're going to move on. Survive and advance is the name of the game in the NCAA tournament. I looked up there a lot of times on that screen yesterday and there were a lot of freshmen out there with Odyssey Sims at critical situations in the game. That's only going to help us as they grow as players. I thought the crowd was good and it came across good on television as a good atmosphere. It was very loud. I'm just proud of all of them because we won. It's difficult not to be a part of it, but as I've said many times, those kids can coach themselves. I think these two (Odyssey Sims and Nina Davis) said it best after the game: good players and good teams should never acknowledge that the coach isn't over there. Go play. I think they did a great job of that."

On what it is like building a powerhouse women's basketball program:
"I think it's harder to maintain it than it is to build it in my opinion. I think that one of the things as a coach when you take over a program and are trying to build it, you better make sure you are in a part of the country that appreciates women's basketball and have fans in the stands. Baylor University and Waco, Texas, was the perfect place for me because we appreciate women's basketball. That was a big question mark in my mind when I left Louisiana Tech and had all those great crowds there for years. Will the fans show up and appreciate women's basketball? Sure, winning solves a lot of problems, but once you start winning and doing it on a consistent basis, I would then gauge my fan support. I don't follow any other program but my own, but that would be a sign of really arriving when you have good crowds night in and night out, regardless of the score and who you play."

Freshman forward Nina Davis

On what to expect from Cal:
"After watching them play I saw that they are very athletic. It'll be pretty much an aggressive game. They get up and down the court. I guess you could say they play more like us up and down throughout the game, so I think it'll be a good game."

On playing Cal at the post position:
"Like you said, yesterday we did get a lot of rebounds. I think tomorrow will be more of a challenge, because they're so athletic. We're going to have to be more technical and actually box out, not just try to jump them because they're athletic and can jump just like us."

Senior guard Odyssey Sims

On Cal's style of play:
"They run a lot. They rebound the ball extremely well. It's a team full of athletes. We're going to have to defend because they can attack you off the dribble so it'll be a great matchup tomorrow night."

On facing off against Brittany Boyd:
"I haven't really watched her play that much, but I know after watching her yesterday that she's a very good point guard. She leads their team, she's kind of the glue on their offense and keeps them going whether she scores or not. They need her to be out there. It'll be a great matchup and I'm looking forward to it."

Sophomore guard Niya Johnson

On her performance last night:
"It was kind of sluggish at first but we picked it up by having more energy and intensity yesterday. I didn't know I had nine assists and zero turnovers I just try to dish the ball to my teammates so they can get an easier shot and focus on not getting any turnovers."

On how to deal with Cal's press:
""[We need to] not be in such a rush, keep attacking, take care of the ball and use ball fakes."



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