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Rick Pitino Discusses The Boston College Win

Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports

Video available here

Opening Statement

I watched a broadcast of the Virginia/BC game, and BC had them on the roped. After the game, Tony Bennett told the TV crew that Boston College was the toughest prep they'd had this year. Then after watching six tapes of Boston College, I totally agreed.

I don't say this because I recruited Jimmy or -- I'm not patronizing him in any way -- this young man's going to be a tremendous coach. His offensive scheme is off the charts. They do things offensively that great teams don't do. They isolate you well, they know who to go at, they slip screens; they are a nightmare to guard. Fortunately for us, we played great offense also.

We left the Duke game and everybody was concerned about our shooting woes. Since then we've made a concentrated effort on getting paint touches before we shoot the ball, and they've done a good job of that.

On the recent play of Chris and Terry

They've had good years all season, but I think since conference play they've been spectacular -- in class by themselves. Every bucket that you need when they come back in the game, they come back and make a lay-up, make a three. A tremendous tandem, certainly. You know they played a lot of zone tonight. We hadn't seen much 3-2 from them, and they played us 3-2 instead of 2-3. But they're playing great basketball. Doing it in the clutch.

On the officiating and seeming upset after Montrezl's 2nd foul

I wasn't upset with the officiating tonight. I don't get upset with the whistle, if you notice I hardly ever yell at officials because if I was on a job and had someone yelling at me the whole game, I couldn't coach. I just thought that in two games our best players got taken out of the game. Tonight, Montrezl fouled. If that's the referee's interpretation of the rule then it was a foul. But in two other games -- Chris Jones got taken out of the game and then you look at the tape and -- they all agree with me, by the way, when you send them the tape and they look at the tape, but they're still out of the game.

On Boston College's second half comeback

Well what happens is, if you play a matchup zone, they put five guys out there who can all beat you off the bounce and even their five guy can shoot. So they can put five guys on the perimeter, and you're in trouble now. The good thing is, until the end when we didn't block out well enough, we didn't foul that much. And that's imperative.

On guys feeding off the confident play of Chris Jones

Well it's interesting because they seem to feed off each other, these two. Last year Russ Smith was the star, and neither one of them was sure what Russ was going to do -- neither was I. I had no idea what Russ was going to do. Russ was a tremendous player for us, but these two guys know each other, and they know what they're gonna do and they feed off of each other. Like, if Chris is dogging somebody full court, he'll say to Terry, "you run the one, I'll run the two."

They're playing a lot of minutes. That's the most impressive thing about their performance is how many minutes they're playing.

On the significance of coming back to Boston

Well I was thinking about it as I was on the bus, and I was telling all the assistant coaches, "this is where I lived, and this is BU, and this is where I would run the Charles River." You know, I used to run the Charles River every morning, I think it was about a 5-mile loop, and Jim Calhoun would be running the other way. Five out of seven days we would cross -- and remember this is BU/Northeastern, even though it doesn't get the exposure of Louisville/Kentucky, it's fierce -- as soon as we would see each other we would both put our heads down and we never said hello for all that time. Today we're great friends.

I've got great memories here. I wish things would have turned out better for me in the end, but I've got great memories. My children were raised here and BU was very good to me, and the Celtics were very good to me.

On the Super Bowl and Pete Carroll being called "the Rick Pitino of the Patriots"

Well I love Pete Carroll, but I'm a Patriots fan. I always text back and forth with Bill. I love Tom Brady, love the Pats. I think it's going to be a great game. I think they've got a tremendous owner, one of the best owners in all of sports. I had the pleasure of meeting him a couple of years ago on the way to the championship and spent about 20 minutes with him in the locker room. He talked always about being a great American. He was just a neat guy to meet. But I think it's going to be a great game, and it's going to be very exciting.

On if this was his first time back in Boston since coaching the Celtics

The last time I was back in Boston was to give a speech. The time before that I went to Lesley Visser's wedding. That was a lot of fun.

So you haven't coached here since the Celtics

I don't think so. I'm not sure. In the Big East -- Boston College left the Big East, so no.

On if he's been talking to Brad Stevens

Yeah. You know it's tough, when I took over they had just won 14, 15 games, and he's taking over the same type situation. Except he has a lot of patience, and I had very little.

Way before he came here, I said to my AD and staff, when I retire, go after that guy. He was at Butler at the time. I said, whatever it costs, go get him. He's going to do a fabulous job because it's not going to get to him, the losing. He understands the journey. He's going to do a great job. They play competitive, and they're going to get better and better. He's a terrific defensive coach, even though his offense is great. Danny knows what to do, and he knows what to do going down the road.

They got themselves what I thought was one of the top three coaches at any level. I told Tom Jurich, just go after that guy the day I retire.