The only thing I remember about Lehigh was the school’s football team that lost to Eastern Kentucky 30-7 in the 1979 I-AA championship game. Now, 33 years later, we now know they have a basketball team that pulled off one of the biggest upsets in the history of the NCAA Tournament wityh a 75-70 victory over second-seeded Duke. In addition, future Southeastern Conference member Missouri, also a second seed, lost 86-84 to Norfolk State.
As we head into the third round of the Big Dance, here are a few quotes to fill your day as we await Kentucky’s game against Iowa State tonight at the KFC Yum! Center in Louisville.
C.J. McCollum: “Duke is a tremendous team, and we didn’t want to rub anything into their faces or anything like that. We got a lot of respect for them. And at the end of the day, it’s just another game for us. But we want to continue to be humble and win like we have been here before.”
Jordan Hamilton: “To add to that, we kind of came into this game expecting to win and that’s kind of how we wanted to show it after we did achieve our goal. So I mean, give Duke a lot of credit; they’re a great team. But we really believed in ourselves in this game.”
Mackey McKnight: “It’s a dream come true. Right when we won the game and the clock hit zero, I just started crying and just thanking my friends and my brother for watching us and blessing us. I told the team thank you for being another family for me and accepting me into their brotherhood and being my new brothers.”
Coach Brett Reeed: “I sit here today humbled, humbled by the opportunity to share this experience with wonderful student‑athletes, individuals who have invested so much of their time into their academic pursuits, building character, being unified as a team, and ultimately fighting through a great deal of adversity through an entire season to grow and learn together, ultimately to use this opportunity in the game of basketball to hopefully not only make meaningful memories, which I think they had tonight, but also to continue to grow and build and certainly help them as they continue to progress beyond basketball.”
Coach Mike Krzyzewski: “The game is a great game. I’ve been in it for 37 years and it takes you to incredible highs. And it also takes you to incredible lows. And tonight’s one of those lows. But it wasn’t just our doing, they played that well. They played that well. And again my hat’s off to them. You just have to give them a lot of credit for hanging in there. And there was some game pressure on them when we came back, and they seemed to always have an answer and they were very bold. They were very bold the entire game. I thought that we started the game tentative, and at different times we just seemed very tentative on the offensive end. They were bold throughout and bold won.”
Quoting Norfolk State:
Coach Anthony Evans: “That was one of the most intense basketball games that I have ever been a part of, I have a tremendous amount of respect for Missouri, for their coaching staff, it was a great opportunity for us, our guys fought hard, all hats off, very, very proud of them.”
Kyle O’Quinn: “We always go into the game with a sense of confidence, we in the game and we came to win it, I never thought there was an upset alert, until that buzzer went off, I mean Phil Pressey got a great shot at the end, anything was up, the ball could have bounced a different way and we could have been on the other side, but thank God we’re on this side right now so, at the end of the game that’s what I thought would happen.”
Coach Frank Haith: “I’m very disappointed as everybody in that locker room was. You know, I hurt for those seniors, because they put so much into this and they had high expectations, as we came into this season. But let’s understand one thing, they have had a hell of a year, a great year. They won 30 ballgames – all‑time winningest senior class in the history of Mizzou basketball, and I’m proud of them. We are disappointed we were not able to continue in this tournament but I’m very proud of these young men.”