Brad Brownell credits Virginia, says Tigers' individual weaknesses exposed

'When you don't play well there's a reason for it. Your individual skills that are weak are exposed.'

Clemson Basketball - Brad Brownell

Photo by Mark Crammer

Clemson Basketball - Brad Brownell

Coming off a defeat like the one the Tigers suffered Thursday night at Charlottesville, first you tip your hat to the opponent and then you take a hard look at yourself.

Brad Brownell did both in his comments following Clemson's 78-41 shellacking at the hands of Virginia.

"First, I want to congratulate Tony (Bennett) and his staff and players on a terrific game. Those guys were not only ready to play, but when they got off to the great start they didn't let up at all on either end," Brownell said. "You learn from the mistakes because when you don't play well there's a reason for it. Your individual skills that are weak are exposed.

"Philosophically we have to look at some of the things we did in the game and make some adjustments, certainly if we play Virginia again. You don't necessarily burn it, but you're never as good as you think you are but you are never as bad as you think you are either."

Both Brownell and Bennett cited Virginia's post defense as a decisive element in the game. Devin Booker took just three shots and went to the free throw line only once, while Milton Jennings, who scored 21 points the last time the teams met, was just 1-of-7 from the floor. The Tigers' two big men combined for nine turnovers.

"(Akil) Mitchell had a lot of help, but they did a great job," Brownell said. "They double teamed off a lot of people and helped a lot off the backside. Their defense was much better than the first game against us."

"Akil did a good job," said Bennett. "I was obviously concerned because Akil was going to be our only true matchup for Booker."

Bennett said the Cavaliers tried to make Jennings work for his open looks at the basket.

"He was 5-of-8 from three the last game we played," Bennett said. "Two of those were off the glass. He's a player that is very talented and he can really get going. We just wanted to make him earn those looks.

"We were quite honestly a little more concerned with Booker. They took it to us in the second half down there and shot 10-of-13. We really wanted to make his catches tough. We just had a couple little adjustments that I think helped us this time around."

Brownell said Virginia's offense fed off its defense, and vice-versa.

"I also think when you're up and making shots then you have a little more juice in your step and more energy on both ends," Brownell said. "To their credit, they didn't let down on either end at all. They played like a team on a mission today."

"Obviously, we moved the ball," Bennett said. "They really played so well together. The ball moved and there were good cuts at the rim. Obviously we shot it well. All that really came together nicely."

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Comments » 1

ewhite#232824 writes:

I think this kind of thrashing by a slightly above average team is more than embarassing. If I played for this team I'd skip any Friday classes I may have. This is just not acceptable for a Clemson team. Too much like the women's team.

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