Northern Iowa Head Coach Ben Jacobson – “I was really impressed by the way our guys played. We practiced well the last 10 days, I thought we were going a lot of different directions for four or five weeks, a lot to do with having the new guys we have in our roster and in the gym generally speaking.
“This is the best we have practiced or played. I was really impressed with the way we were able to defend tonight. That was one of the things we talked about, how we were going to keep Arizona State out of the transition game, keep them off the foul line and you still have to defend the 3-point line. That’s a lot, that’s a big challenge and our guys did well in that area.”
(On defending ASU’s Tra Holder) “He’s so good at getting between guys, if he sees room he’s going to go and once he goes it’s too hard to run in and stop him. Or you run in and you’re leaving the 3-point shooters so our positioning was real important. There weren’t openings for him to see.”
(On Jeremy Morgan) “The best part of his game is his versatility. Sometimes when that’s the word used by your coach or what people see, they go ‘OK, he must not be great at any thing. He’s pretty good at a lot of things. The word ‘versatility’ is high praise for Jeremy and the reason it works is because he’s unselfish.”
Northern Iowa guard Jeremy Morgan – “I’m just going out there and trying to do everything I can for the team. Whether that’s getting the ball to somebody that’s wide open or going to get an extra possession on offense or knocking down an open 3, just trying to do everything I can to help the team win.
“Everybody on this team’s a good player. When you’ve got guys coming into the game off the bench that can shoot the ball like everybody can makes the job easier for us. It spaces the floor for Bennett (Koch) out there and I’ve got guys I can find on that 3-point line and I know they’re going to knock it down. That’s a big part of our team.”
Northern Iowa guard Spencer Haldeman – “I was a little nervous coming out but last year really helped me, my redshirt year, learning what to do in certain situations behind Bo (Matt Bohannon) and Wes (Washpun) and Paul (Jesperson) and those guys. They taught me a lot so I kind of knew what to expect speed of the game wise, the physicality of the game. Just coming out being prepared doing my job on the team.
“If I’m open, I’m going to shoot it. It’s good to get that first one out of the way. It gives me a little more confidence with my whole game. My coach always talks about having confidence on what you do.”
Arizona State Head Coach Bobby Hurley – “It was obviously a disappointing effort for us. It was out of character from how we’ve been playing and practicing. We didn’t move the ball well at all and credit to Northern Iowa and how they shared the ball and shotmaking. Morgan’s terrific a really good all-around player. Carlson had a great game and they got strong contributions out of the bench.
“They moved the ball around well and the ball was popping out there. We didn’t match that. We turned it over too many times from guys I didn’t expect to turn it over. We were rushing too much, we were trying to get it all on one drive and we weren’t letting possessions breathe and trying to share the ball better.
“You just hope that you fight a little harder, that you compete a little better when things aren’t going your way. We made a couple of runs early in the second half but they pushed it back. We just didn’t respond. I thought our defense let us as the second half wore on. Some of their shots may have demoralized our defense some.”