Oklahoma head coach Lon Kruger on the overtime loss: “It’s a tough loss, sure, but a really good basketball game. I thought guys on both teams played their hearts out. It was a big-time battle from start to finish. Guys on both teams made a lot of big-time plays. Defense was having a tough time getting stops. I’m proud of our guys. Disappointed in not finishing it, but we got beat by a really good Oklahoma State ball club. We’ll grow from this. We’ve got to keep making progress. There’s a lot of the season left, and we’ll keep getting better. I’m proud of our guys. They’ll bounce back from this.”
Oklahoma State head coach Travis Ford on his team’s offense and defense against Oklahoma: “I was very upset with a lot of shots that we were taking. We got in the bonus very early in both halves, and we started settling for jumpshots. In the first half, I thought we did way too much one-on-one with no ball movement.
At halftime all we talked about was ball movement and attack. We improved offensively, but we couldn’t stop them. It was crazy. As you saw, we change defenses every three or four possessions to see what was going to work. But give Oklahoma credit. I have a lot of respect for their basketball team, and had before the year started. They create matchup problems for everybody, and definitely for us.”
Kruger on Romero Osby in the last possession of regulation: “[Romero] had done such a good job carrying us down the stretch there in the second half. We were trying to get him isolated there and give him some options. Oklahoma State did a good job of covering it. He was terrific as he’s been all season.”
Ford on defending Steven Pledger and Sam Grooms:“Pledger went on about a three-minute tear where he was just making everything. Marcus [Smart] asked to guard him. He took that as a personal challenge, and he did a great job. Then the matchup with Markel [Brown] and Grooms was pretty good. He kept letting him drive. He thought he had four fouls, but at the time he did not, he had three. He was playing very hesitant.
“[Romero] Osby is hard to stop. He’s such a mismatch problem. They do a good job of countering with him, and getting Pledger a stop. Give credit to them, but give credit to our guys for making plays. We had big steals, a big blocked shot by Marcus, a big and-one by Le’Bryan Nash. You can’t single out any one guy on our team because so many guys made big plays.”
Oklahoma senior forward Romero Osby on the game going into overtime: “We came into it with high spirits. We thought we still had an opportunity to win the game. We weren’t down because we had been up most of the game or anything like that. That’s the case with some teams, but we just tried to keep it together and stay poised. We knew we had an opportunity to win it.”
Oklahoma State junior guard Markel Brown on what sparked the Cowboys: “It was probably the OU loss [in Norman] we had earlier this season. After we lost that game, we had some early morning practices, looked ourselves in the mirror, and we knew we were better than that, so we just took another approach. We were going to be an aggressive team and a very hard-working team and we needed to use that to our ability. We worked on some different things and it’s coming together for us.”
Osby on his burst in the second half: “There was one play where I drove down the baseline and made a bucket, and that kind of got me going a little bit. In the first half, I was really just focused on defensive rebounding. I took some tough shots and didn’t make them, but I kind of got into a groove in the second half. There were a couple of nice rebounds and passes that got me started.”
Oklahoma State freshman guard Marcus Smart on trying to defend OU senior Steven Pledger: “We lost him a couple times, a player like that has the ultimate range, he heated up. I told coach, ‘Let me take him, everybody else guard their man and I’ll make sure he doesn’t score’. I took pride in that and that was my primary plan to not let him score there at the end.”
Smart on redemption from road loss in Norman “That game wasn’t a good game for me, I got into foul trouble early and the rest of the game I was frustrated and wasn’t able to be there for my team. I felt bad and that’s all I was thinking about this week was this game today and OU. I just needed to come out and prove I was a better player, play right and I wasn’t going to let them frustrate me this time.”
Oklahoma senior guard Sam Grooms on the loss: “It hurts to come out of here without the win. At the same time though, we learned a lot of things as a team that can help us grow in the future. That’s what we’re looking forward to. We have to go forward into the next game and through the rest of the season. We’ll work hard for next week.”
Oklahoma State sophomore guard/forward Le’Bryan Nash on his performance in the second half: “I just decided that I needed to stay in the game. I got two fouls early and didn’t get to play much in the first half, so I just tried to stay in the game and help this team win games. I try to contribute as much as I can and help win. That’s the biggest thing for all of us is just to win. It doesn’t matter if it’s pretty as long as we win it.”
Kruger on Selection Sunday being 28 days away: “We’re not at all concerned about it. If Selection (Sunday) was today, I might have some feelings about that. I’d feel pretty good about it. Our guys have done a great job. But we have a lot of games left, and a lot of work to do, and we’ll approach it like we always need one more. We’ll work on getting better.”