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Coach Williams' postgame comments
after Kansas 80, Missouri 70
courtesy of Jack Alden

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"You'd lke to win to finish off the weekend (100th anniversary celebration) and make everybody feel it was a fantastic weekend. I jokingly, but truthfully, told the people last night that I had two goals this weekend. One was for them to have a great time, and the second thing was for us to win. And if I had to choose, I was sorry about their feelings. But that's exactly the way it ended up. I wanted it to be a great weekend, but really for those 14 kids in the locker room, I wanted them to get the big win and to feel that they could show the legends and all the lettermen here that they can still play, and that Kansas basketball is still something that's good to watch.

"We score the first two baskets of the second half to go up 19, and then I think we got a little lazy and thought it was going to be easy. And at that point Missouri really came at us. Then we had a couple of spurts where we take it back to 11 or 13, something like that, and they they came at us again and cut it to three. We got a big hoop inside by Raef, and the very next possession C.B. steals the inbounds pass, and I think those were the two biggest plays. They go down and they score again, and then we run the shot clock down and run a play for Billy. He had really struggled, but Billy came off Raef's screen and had a good shot, made a great fake, and then made the basket.

"Lester was a big lift for us, to say the least. I told T.J. that somewhere over the weekend he had given his brain to one of the lettermen, because he left it somewhere. He didn't have it out on the court. We put Lester in and Lester gave us a big lift, blocked some shots, scored two hoops for us inside. T.J. didn't have one of his better days. You could tell when the guy goes in there and tries to drive in amongst three people and tries to make a layup and he's worried about charging, and you've got Ryan Robertson over there wide open. But they're college kids, and that's the fun part of coaching. They're going to make mistakes and you got to stick with them. Billy wasn't doing very well and turned it over right in front of our bench, yet I came back with him and put a little pressure on him, and he made the shot at that point, too.

"In the first half Raef was our offense. He was having to make tough shots because we weren't very patient. If he hadn't made some dificult shots in the first half, it wouldn't have been that margin at all. Then in the second half they did a little better job on him, and we still didn't make many shots.

"The whole key in the second half was Missouri just made a great run. John Woods, I think when he saw Kenny Gregory out there on him on defense, his eyes lit up. Then were we got Billy back in, he did the same thing. He probably scored 15 or 16 the second half. And then Monty (Hardge) was a problem for us because we didn't get around and front him very well. And then we ran off from the perimeter guys and went in there and fouled Monty a couple of times, and one time he did throw it out and somebody made a three. Raef has got to do a better job and front the guy in the low post, and then when he does get it, he's got to make him score over him instead of fouling him.

"(Norm Stewart) said some nice things before the game. He said to me, 'This has to be a fantastic weekend.' And I believe he's like that. He's the kind of guy the Kansas people like to get on, and at times it's probably deserved. But I have a great deal of respect for him and what he's done, and his club has gotten better and better. And I think it's one of the top clubs in our league. They got off to a rough start in league play and lost some on the road, but if they get a breakthrough on the road, they've got four great wins against ranked opponents, and I think we'll see them in the tournament.

"I contacted Larry (Brown), dropped him a note in his Christmas carrd and also called him last week, and told him I thought it was important that he be here. I really appreciated him coming. I know he didn't come just for me by any means, but I really appreciated hm coming here, and I know his kids were really happy to see him.

"As long as Roy Williams is the coach, everybody who's ever played here is going to be a part of the family, and I want them to feel that it's their program, and feel great when we win and feel bad when we lose, because it's theirs."

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