Texas Southern coach Mike Davis, who coached at Indiana from 2000 to 2006, brought his team to Bloomington on Monday for a meeting with IU in the Hoosiers Showcase.
Indiana prevailed, 83-64 and afterward, Davis addressed the media in the Assembly Hall press room.
Watch the press conference below:
Quotes are available after the jump.
How was the return to Assembly Hall tonight?
First of all, it was the first time I’ve lost a game here where I’m not sad. It’s great to be back. I wanted to bring my family back. Indiana has shown so much love for me. I am where I am today because of Indiana basketball. Coming out and getting a standing ovation, I really owe them a standing ovation for what they’ve done for me and my family.
How strange was it to be in the visitors’ locker room and on that side of Assembly Hall?
I’ve never visited the visitors’ locker room before, and last night was the first time for that. It was strange, but it exciting. I wanted my players to be able to witness Assembly Hall, one of the best venues in the country. To be able to say you’ve played at Assembly Hall is really good. Indiana has a really good team. They can really shoot the basketball. It was a lot of fun being back.
We’re you able to soak in anything or were you just focused on the game?
When we were flying in I just couldn’t wait. Flying here and landing in Indianapolis and getting on the bus and coming here brought back a lot of great memories. You know, we went to the Final Four, we won our conference, just thinking about all my past players. I owe Indiana way more then anything. Just so excited to be back. For us to come here and play, it’s not about us winning or losing, it’s about us getting better. I wish I could stay a couple of extra days.
What did you think of Robert Johnson?
Johnson is a very good player. I don’t recruit that level anymore, but he’s very good, scoring 17 first half points. Indiana can really shoot the basketball. They really test you defensively.
You guys didn’t quit, even with a short-handed team. You’ve got to be proud of that.
I’m really proud of them. Even though we weren’t full strength, we we’re definitely underdogs for sure. As I keep telling my basketball team, in our first 16 games we only have one home game. So we have 15 games on the road and every single night until we go into our conference we will be the underdogs. That’s a great position to be in. When you walk into an arena knowing you’re underdogs, you can see how long you can fight and how long you can keep your concentration. Tonight I think we fought a little harder. We took one step further as a basketball team.
You talked about how much you looked forward to coming here, did it register at all with your players what it means to play here?
I had one player ask me last week, “Coach, I didn’t know you coached at Indiana?”. I’m like, “Where’ve you been for the last 20 years”. I can’t say it enough, I wanted to come back and when this opportunity presented itself, it was a no-brainer. I wanted to have a better team. It wasn’t about winning or losing the game, it was just about me being back here with my family.
Players reaction to seeing Assembly Hall:
Well you know how it is. When you walk into Assembly Hall it’s kind of mind blowing. You walk in and you see all the banners and you’re standing there looking at them. My players said, “Coach, where’s your banner?”. It was good for the team to experience.