Everything Rick Barnes said about Tennessee’s win over Vanderbilt

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    Vols head basketball coach Rick Barnes met with the media on Wednesday night following No. 25 Tennessee’s 70-58 win over Vanderbilt.

    Barnes discussed Scottie Pippen Jr. and Dylan Disu not playing for Vandy, the Commodores’ success from the three-point line, Keon Johnson’s six turnovers, on Keon Johnson’s six turnovers, why Olivier Nkamhoua didn’t play in the second half and much more. Here’s everything Barnes had to say:

    On when he found out Scottie Pippen Jr. and Dylan Disu weren’t playing:

    “Well, we didn’t know until we got here and they were out there in sweats and rebounding the ball for their teammates. Not a whole lot in terms of switching. I think you have to give Jerry Stackhouse a ton of credit. He does so many good things offensively. They spread us out. They made some threes. They made some tough ones. We turned the ball over just way too much. We have to stop turning the ball over. It’s probably a good thing they didn’t have those two guys with the way we were turning the ball over. My hat goes off to them because their players fought really hard tonight. Our guys did. But we just can’t continue to turn the ball over at that kind of rate.”

    On Vanderbilt’s success from the three-point line:

    “It was simple. We knew they were going to spread us out. We knew they would have to shoot a bunch of threes. It was important that you guarded your own man and not give them angles. We had three breakdowns where guys helped off shooters when they should not have. To me, on the defensive end, that is like a turnover or mental mistake. Those things can’t happen. But it just happens out of instinct when a guy doesn’t stay in front of the ball because it is in our DNA to try and help somebody. Then a couple times I thought guys just didn’t guard the ball. Shot fakes, leaving their feet. That is something we worked on for two days, staying down and not leaving our feet. Overall, my only thing other than that is I know we turned the ball over a lot. That is too many opportunities to score the ball. We missed some shots that we have to make, close-in, close-range shots. We have to continue working to be more consistent on the offensive end.”

    On Keon Johnson having six turnovers:

    “I think he is trying to do too much. I think he has got to move the ball. I think he has got to get back to playing to his strengths. He is just trying to do too much. He has to understand where his bread is buttered. Defensively is where he has to get back to playing. He got blown by a couple times and that shouldn’t happen. He needs to get back to rebounding the ball. He has got to stop turning it over. That goes back to just simply trying to do too much.”

    On the performance of Victor Bailey Jr. in the last couple of games:

    “He has got to be better defensively. He has a tendency not to guard and push up on the ball. We think he could be a really good on-the-ball defender. Offensively, I still think he has to keep going downhill with the ball. He had a chance tonight, a couple times he just stopped himself on a few curl actions when he could have kept going with it. I think he, for the most part, is letting it come to him and not trying to do too much, letting other guys play and create some opportunities where he can spot up to shoot it. We have to get more guys playing to their strengths.”

    On why Olivier Nkamhoua didn’t play in the second half:

    “Just the way the game flowing. We were trying to get in a rhythm. When they played small ball, we were trying to match them. The whole game was based on who we thought were the best matchups.”

    On Jaden Springer bouncing back from his poor performance against Kentucky:

    “I thought he really tried to do a good job. I thought he played the point more tonight than he has in a long time. I think that was a good adjustment for him to do that. But the fact that he fought back. In the last couple minutes, you know, I thought the pass he threw to Fulky wasn’t a wise decision. The one he threw to Keon was a great play. That’s, again, where he’s continuing to learn point guard, learning the game and managing it. Overall I thought he worked hard defensively, I thought he worked hard offensively trying to get guys involved. A little bit too much, honestly. I think he was trying so hard to get the ball into the post area. He held onto it a little bit longer. But again, for him trying to play the point more, I thought it was really good for him. And the way he bounced back was obviously good.”

    On how frustrating the turnovers are at this point in the season:

    “It’s really frustrating because they’re uncalled for. I think it goes back to again being locked in. Knowing what you’re good, doing what you do, don’t try to do it all by yourself. Play together as a team. You think about that, we cut those in half tonight, it maybe gives us a chance to score. I mean, that’s why we’re so inconsistent with our offense. I mean, think about it. You turn the ball over 17 times. As you said, so many of those had nothing to do with them. It was just us. Those are the ones, it’s one of the most frustrating things as a coach you have to deal with. Guys just don’t value the ball.”