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"They're just not in a very good mood to talk. I don't want them saying anything they shouldn't say. They're upset, embarrassed about the way they played. You don't have a 19-, 20-year old kid in front of a microphone when he's embarrassed." - Kevin Willard on closing the locker room.
Different opponent, same result. Seton Hall played tough for 22 minutes before being incapacitated by Big East leading Marquette last night, 67-46. Kevin Willard closed the locker room for the fourth time in his tenure at Seton Hall, making all the players unavailable to the media. Willard also skipped his usual post-game interview with Gary Cohen and Dave Popkin of 1250AM WMTR, who attempted to stall for the Seton Hall skipper, to no avail.
All of Kevin Willard's post-game quotes are courtesy of Jerry Carino, who covered the game last night:
"They did a great job of getting after us, beating us up a little bit, which we don't like."
"I have answers, I just have to wait until next year to deal with it."
What he told the players: "I said we've got to figure out a way to finish the last five games of the season better than we did tonight . . . obviously there are going to have to be a couple of changes made."
"The effect of all the injuries have really demoralized this team to the point where a 25-1 run happens and we don't have much fight in us. That's a little bit of being young and not having a whole lot of depth."
"We're bringing in a couple of guys that have a little more fight than a couple of guys on this team. We have to make a couple of changes . . . get the guys who are hurt healthy and go from there."
"I'm not really frustrated with them. I'm just frustrated overall. You've got Haralds Karlis playing power forward against Big East teams, that's my frustration point. That's where we're at right now. We just need to recruit guys who have a little bit more fight in them."
"I don't think it's the center spot. One of our biggest weaknesses, we don't have the horses at the four spot. When Brandon and Patrik were healthy, it was a different story. I give Haralds a lot of credit; he's out there giving it his all. But when you're battling teams like Marquette and Syracuse, it wears down on you. I think it's wearing down on us more mentally than physically. Physically, we're getting out-matched. It's tough to keep battling when you're so undersized."
On closing the locker room for the fourth time in his tenure and second time this season:
"They're just not in a very good mood to talk. I don't want them saying anything they shouldn't say. They're upset, embarrassed about the way they played. You don't have a 19-, 20-year old kid in front of a microphone when he's embarrassed. I think I'm pretty good with the locker room most of the time."
"Right now they're all having a little meeting and all going back to their dorms. Again, we have a very open media policy 99.9 percent of the time. You can ask me anything, I will answer. They will not talk today."
Interesting Stats & Notes:
- Marquette had a 47% OReb% at halftime. They had snared 8 offensive boards on 17 missed shots. Second chance city.
- .4. Two fouls were committed and two points were scored in the final .4 of the first half. Tom Maayan fouled Derrick Wilson -- with .4 to play and Buzz Williams already in the locker room -- who missed the front end of a 1-and-1. However, Marquette's Jamil Wilson fouled Aaron Geramipoor on the rebound of the free throw before the clock started. Geramipoor, a career 25.8% foul shooter, sunk both with .4 still on the clock and pumped his fist in the air. Bizarre.
- Seton Hall was held without a field goal for 9:26 and held scoreless for 6:40 in the second half. Da Drought?
- Marquette went on a game-clinching 25-1 run in the second half. Jugular.
- This is the fourth time Kevin Willard has closed the locker room after a game but just the first time at home. Protective.
- Seton Hall shot 15-51 from the field (29.4%) and 7-27 from 3PT (25.9%). Offensive game plan: YOLO.
- Going into Saturday's game at Louisville (<4% chance of winning), Seton Hall will be without a win in 30 days. Struggle city.