Marquette coach: "BYU not near as slow as you would think."
Recovered yet, BYU fans?
I arrived in Louisville a few hours ago -- the two-hour drive from Dayton went well -- and just listened to the Marquette news conference, where coach Buzz Williams talked about last night's BYU win and what the Golden Eagles will have to do Thursday to beat the Cougars.
Entertaining stuff. Williams is as engaging and personable as advertised, and he had nothing but praise for BYU coach Dave Rose. The two coaches are close friends.
"I have the utmost respect for who Dave is as a human being. The utmost," Williams said.
More on that later.
Hope you were able to catch our coverage of last night's historic game. Tribune columnist Kurt Kragthorpe recapped it in this fine piece that can be found online today
. Give it a look.
* Here's my game story,
which had to be totally rewritten about five minutes into the second half when it became evident the Cougars weren't going to roll over and die in the First Four game.
* Here's a notebook on the game and hoopla surrounding President Barack Obama's visit.
* And here's a sidebar about the Cougars' big comeback.
Back to Williams. He said Marquette's coaches and a few players watched the BYU-Iona game in a conference room at their hotel here in Louisville.
"I've never seen anything like it in my life," he said. "I was ready to see the game. I was tired of preparing for two teams. I wanted to see a lot of different things within the matchup.
"BYU's not near as slow as you would think, and it is hard, unless you watch Iona, to explain how fast they are. But BYU's offensive numbers are very comparable to Iona's from an efficiency standpoint, from an effectiveness standpoint. But I had never seen an NCAA Tournament game like that."
"I am watching Dave [Rose]. I don't think -- Dave doesn't use profanity, but I don't think he even thought about using profanity. Never saw him stand up and lose his mind."
Couple more comments from Williams:
On Dave Rose:
"I think he's got to be one of the top two or three most unheralded head coaches in the country. He has won 78 percent of his games, been coach of the year in the league three years in a row in the Mountain West, a league that I am familiar with. Been to the NCAA Tournament every single year [except his first], had coached the player of the year at BYU. Had that ever happened before? I mean, I just -- I stand at attention for who he is as a person and as a professional."
On Noah Hartsock:
"When I was an assistant at CSU, I recruited Noah. I think Noah is four years younger than me, I think. And his high school coach was texting me last night, [saying] do you remember Noah? I'm like, yeah, I remember Noah. I think he's the most effective one-two player in Division I.
"If you were to look at his effectiveness not in the paint and not behind the three-point line, I haven't seen a guy in a long time as effective as he is. He's not a post. He's not a perimeter player. He's a really good player. What he has meant to their team speaks for itself."
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