"Big Dance" Interviews: Bucknell Postseason Teleconference
Center Mike Muscala
On his two buzzer-beaters: "Both of the buzzer beaters I made in January (against Richmond and Holy Cross) were due to great help from my teammates who gave me great screens and passes. I would not call myself a "clutch" player, as I have missed some free throws this year."
On the NCAA Tournament: "I am not sure how much pressure there will be in the NCAA Tournament until I step onto the court, but I am excited to be going to D.C. We all trust in each other and know that we need to play together in order to win."
On Bucknell's play of late: "I do think that we are one of the hottest teams in the country (won 23 of their last 25 games), but the loss to Army in January helped us get re-focused so I am excited to see what we can do this week. Our defense has helped us win a lot of games this year."
On their preseason expectations: "Our expectations this year were to win a conference championship, which we were able to achieve."
On what he looks to do on the floor: "I just try to do the little things: holding seals in the post, not let the ball get stolen, etc. I just take what the defense gives me and try to play good defense as well myself."
On Bucknell's offense: "We know we have a ton of options on offense even if we have different game plans for each game."
On how they'll handle the experience: "We will savor every minute of it because it is a dream come true, but we are also here to win games."
Head coach Dave Paulsen
On his team: "We are really excited to represent Bucknell and the Patriot League. I have never had a more coachable group in my 17 years as a coach than this group. We were ecstatic when they announced our name on the selection show...until we saw that we would be playing Connecticut! We have a team that will not beat itself and is hard to score on. We also have a strong assist-to-turnover ratio and are among the nation's leaders in free throw percentage."
On Connecticut: "When I look at the tapes of Connecticut I get nightmares! With travel, logistics, tickets and media I have not had a lot of time to watch the Huskies, but they are playing at a really high level and have one of the best players in the country in Kemba Walker."
On what his experience at Williams College taught him: "After winning the Division II national title in 2003 at Williams, the thing I learned about winning postseason games is that you have to recruit good players."
On what he and his staff look to emphasize: "We continue to stress to our guys that you have to take your defensive intensity and focus up a notch while also relaxing on the offensive end, which is a lot easier said than done."
On his experience with Michigan in the 1990 NCAA Tournament: "I remember Jeff Fryer making a ton of threes for LMU when they beat our Michigan team in the 1990 tourney (149-115). It was an absolute annihilation.