Here is what Houston coach Kelvin Sampson said after his team’s 74-59 win over Ohio State Sunday night that sends it into Friday night’s Midwest Region semifinal matchup with Kentucky in Kansas City at about 10 p.m. EST after Auburn and North Carolina play in the first game. The winners will play for a Final Four berth on Sunday.
“I thought our best player tonight was our senior point guard, Galen Robinson. Has nothing to do with his points. The most overrated thing sometimes is evaluating someone based on how many points he scores. I seen a lot of guys play horrible and score a bunch of points. I’ve seen some guys that play great, score hardly. Brison Gresham tonight is by far our best big guy. I’m sure he scored. I can’t remember. Three for three, three for four. It was his defense.
“Holding Kaleb Wesson had 7 shot attempts, 6 of them 3s. That means we won that battle. If we got him taking 3s, that’s a good thing for us. I just thought that our guys executed defensively what we wanted to do. After about the 8, 9 minutes into the game — we weren’t letting them get too comfortable. We can’t let you get comfortable. Ball movement was excellent.
“Galen just competed hard. Corey — Corey doesn’t have to shoot the ball well to play well. These two guys, they’re just warriors, tough kids. That’s our program. Our program is built on competing and playing with a chip and never losing that chip. That’s important. I tell the kids all the time once they leave our program and they go out into life, “Don’t ever lose your chip, man.” That’s important to live your live with it because that gives you a competitive edge.
“I was ready proud of our team tonight.
“As far as Galen, he’s been here four years. He’s won a hundred and — how many games? 108, 109? So he doesn’t know anything but winning. Corey has been here two years, and two years his team has won 60 games. The bad days, the dark days, don’t apply to our kids. They don’t know anything but winning.
“Galen has been here four years. He’s won 22, 21, 27, now 33. When you talk about 30 years ago, Galen is 21 years old.
“I remember it, but I wasn’t here so — that’s great for the old guys, you know. Makes them proud, makes them happy. But we’re living in the present. We’re not living in the past.”