MBI QUOTES – Charlotte 54, Boise State 42

Charlotte Coach Ron Sanchez – “Like always, I’m thankful for the win and obviously we need to do better. Right now we’ll celebrate and identify things we need to work on. We had a level of connection defensively that was evident in the first half. As a whole we contested shots and did some of the non-obvious little things well. We contested, we blocked out, we tried to limit them in transition.” (On center Ali Khalifa): “I think he’s kind of a unicorn. There aren’t many guys his size that can do some things. We can talk about all the things he can’t do but he has a special talent and his ability to see a target. He’s kind of like a quarterback who just sees the route and can lead guys into baskets.”

Charlotte guard Brice Williams – “We were just so connected on defense. We came out with a mindset to force them into bad shots, tough shots. That’s what we came out here and did and we really set the tone in the first four minutes.” (On the second-half mindset): “Coach said the score is 0-0. Don’t let up, win that first four and set the tone again. If we score and they don’t score, and we keep getting stops then we win the game. We don’t care how many points we score, it’s all about defense.”

Boise State Coach Leon Rice – “Charlotte came out tougher than us tonight with a lot more resolve. We missed some shots and let it affect everything we did. It was really a soft mentality by us and I’m disappointed in that because we’re about toughness and competitors. I’m still figuring this team as far as I’m going to play and who needs to play and I saw some guys bring some toughness in the second half. We’re a work in progress obviously. Credit Charlotte, they’re a good defensive team with good principles. We certainly contributed to that. We’ll see what we’re made of and I know these guys are a lot tougher than what they showed.”