Dec. 15, 2002
Arizona Head Coach Lute Olson Quotes:
"This was a very hard-fought basketball game. There was great defense on both ends, and trying to get good looks at the basket was a challenge for both teams. The rebounds were key for us because Texas is a very strong rebounding team. Texas is a very good team, and they have great depth much like we do."
"Down the stretch, Jason Gardner showed the kind of competitor he is, and there is no question who was in control at the end. He was able to play through a lot of holding and pushing. Rebounding is about desire, and Jason was our leader on the defensive glass. He had some big-time rebounds in traffic that were key at the end."
"Isaiah Fox's performance was key. Isaiah is so active, and he competes very hard on every play. I am very pleased with his continuing development, and he goes after everything every minute he is on the floor."
"Today's game was a big test for our freshmen, and they did a very nice job. Andre (Iguodala) and Hassan (Adams) gave us a solid game, combining for 17 points and 10 rebounds, and they were solid on the defensive end."
"It was good to have Salim (Stoudamire) back. He is still not in game condition, but we need to have him available for the three-point shot."
Arizona Player Quotes:
Senior Jason Gardner:
"I thought that Texas played a hard game. Overall, I credit our team for coming out and playing hard. They battled hard and hit the boards."
"He (T.J. Ford) is a great player and he played really hard, but I've got to give the most credit to my team for playing hard enough to get the win."
On shooting performance:
"Games like that will happen. There are games where the shot's not falling. But when you get the open shot, you've still got to take it."
"I didn't want to make it into a one-on-one matchup with T.J. Ford. I trusted my team to come through. He's their go-to player, I'm one of our go-to players. So people are going to expect that type of matchup."
"A lot of people were questioning our strength of schedule. But our schedule is fitting us well and Texas was a good test for us. Texas was very physical. The Big 12 is a very physical conference, but our guys did a good job of being tough, especially on the boards."
Sophomore Isaiah Fox:
"They are a very, big physical team that likes to rebound hard. Coach Olson talked a lot about rebounding this week so our team got tougher and got better at rebounding."
"Playing a real close game will help us down the stretch. That was the most physical game we've played this year. And last year, they were probably the most physical team we played. They are a real good team. They deserve their ranking and probably will go really deep in the tournament."
On Jason Gardner:
"That's our leader. Even though he may have missed a few shots, we're still going to go to him down the stretch."
Senior Rick Anderson:
"The team changes without Luke (Walton). He can do so much out there. We can rely on him (to do so many things). We need him - plain and simple. I wasn't at my best today. But I missed Luke out there. We've been playing together for five years. I feel like I didn't play up to my potential, but the team played great."
"He (Jason Gardner) stepped it up big time. That's what a senior's supposed to do. He's clutch. He might have missed some shots early. But it doesn't matter because he hit the ones down the stretch."
"You don't know who's coming in or out but we're getting used to it. I think it's great because it keeps guys playing hard."