On senior night, No. 11 Florida State raced past Boston College 93-64, as 14 different players scored. Senior guard M.J. Walker was lights out from three-point territory, knocking down 6 threes and starting the game 5-of-6 from downtown. He finished with 18 points.
FSU (15-4, 11-3 ACC) continues their dominance at home, and will carry a 25-straight conference home winning-streak into the 2021-22 season.
After the win, Florida State head coach Leonard Hamilton, and redshirt seniors Will Miles and Harrison Prieto spoke with the media for post-game comments.
Leonard Hamilton’s comments:
Opening statement: “Obviously, I thought that this was a tremendous way to send our seniors off. I have never seen so many guys cheering for each and other and happy for the experience. Last night we had our last home team meeting, and the seniors had a chance to address their teammates and thank people for the experience. There must have been 25 or 30 people in there and everybody was crying. Every player that took the podium was crying. Sharing how much they have loved the experience they have had at Florida State. I thought that type of emotion was a reflection of how hard they played and how consistent they were for the full 40 minutes.”
More opening statement: “We have developed a culture that seems to be growing. I think that the unselfish spirit, the intensity, the effort that these guys are giving, is as a result of the brotherhood that they have formed and the Seminole spirit that they have developed. They have a lot of fond memories and this night will be one that they won’t forget. What we need to do know is this. We gotta enjoy this moment for another hour and 15 minutes, and then you’re gonna get to bed, because sometimes in life, you don’t have a chance to compete for one championship. A lot of people have never won a championship in checkers, marbles, ping pong, jumping rope. They have never won a championship in anything. We have the opportunity to compete for two. And back-to-back in the best conference ever assembled in the history of college basketball. So, we are excited about this opportunity. We are going to try to stay focused, be ready to go Saturday in South Bend.”
On M.J. Walker’s performance and unselfish play of the entire team: “There were so many signs of unselfish play, guys caring about each other. Wanting their brothers to enjoy the experience. I tried to put Tanor in the game, and he was begging me to put Quincy back in the game in his place, so he could get a basket in this experience. That is the kind of unselfish spirit these guys have developed. Their brotherhood is special, the culture that we develop represents the Seminole brand as well as anything I have experienced. It has been a fun ride for these guys for four years.”
On M.J. Walker and Scottie Barnes’ status: “I did not know if M.J. was gonna play. Scottie has tonsillitis, and he got antibiotics yesterday that helped him prepare himself to be able to play. M.J. has not practiced since before the Pittsburgh game, he has been recovering for that long period of time. I knew that Malik was not gonna play, but I really did not know that Scottie and M.J. were gonna play until the shootaround at 4:00. Scottie had been sick, he had tonsillitis that had become infected. M.J. was still nursing minor tendinitis. They both miraculously came around because they wanted to be a part of this night for the seniors. That speaks volumes about them.”
On Harrison Prieto’s big three late in the game: “It was a pick and pop play. And Harrison shoots that shot all the time. The season could not have ended on a better note, and I am so proud of the Green team. I am not sure that people realize the important that they play in what we do. Their voice is just as important as the leading scorer on the team. And they exercise it. That’s the culture, they’re treated like they’re the leading scorer, everybody is the same. That’s why this night was so special.”
On energy in Civic Center tonight: “I thought that players received that energy from the crowd, and the crowd got energy from the players. They had such a festive, fun attitude with effort and unselfish spirt, that they crowd got excited by them, and the players got excited by the crowd, and it was a good night for everybody.”
On Malik Osborne’s status and if he will be available versus Notre Dame: “We think that he will. He’s had a lot of swelling his ankle, it just has been hard to get the swelling out. We want to be at full strength to play for the championship.”
On Florida State’s home winning streak: “I just try to take it one day at a time, I try not to get too caught up in those things. It’s important, very important for our legacy. I just try to worry about that which I can control, and that’s every day of practice, every possession of practice, every possession of every game. Try to get these guys to buy-in to selling out to the little things, the details that has allowed us to be at this point. We want to put pressure on ourselves to worry about setting records, we just want to put pressure on ourselves giving all we have in all our heart and all our soul on a consistent basis.”
Harrison Prieto’s comments:
On his late three-pointer: “It was clean, as soon as it left my hand I was pretty sure it was going in…So I think for me its something that I do in practice all the time. You can go ask Mfiondu Kabengele about my NBA threes (chuckles), and he’ll tell you what happened tonight happened everyday in practice. So I don’t think anybody was surprised, but it was definitely a good feeling for me inside. I don’t know, last night in the Tuck and you get nail a three with clock winding down, felt pretty good.”
On the success of the Green Vipors and the team overall tonight: “Yeah we even said that before, after the first segment, ‘that couldn’t have gone better.’ And then the next segment at the end of the game when we got to close it out. I don’t think that could have gone better. That was really kind of fulfilling for all of us, after all our times here, because you guys and the fans at home don’t get to see what we do everyday, but what we did tonight is what we do everyday. Its fun to get to show everybody that, and you know, we can play a little bit. It was good.”
On Florida State basketball: “I said this recently, I think it speaks to two things. The culture that the coaches promote and expect out of their players here. And also the type of player that they recruit. I think our coaches recruit unbelievable people. Before they look at what kind of basketball player he is. I think that’s one of the biggest reasons why we are successful. There’s just good people that have been in this locker room the past 5 years. Really good people. I think back to Michael Ojo, Terance Mann, all of those guys, Trent Forrest. All of the guys on the team now. That has been the most important thing.”
Will Miles’ comments:
On the reaction from the crowd and the excitement of starting the game: “It was amazing. Normally, we’re in there the last three minutes so for us to get in there the first three minutes was just a whole different type of energy. We had Ray Evans in there with us too and he was getting some blocks and turning us up. They drove down, Harry swatted them out of bounds. The crowd was going nuts. It was amazing, tonight couldn’t have gone better for us.”
On his time at FSU on the team the past 5 years: “I mean, I think we honestly have kind of been just spoiled being in this program. I couldn’t imagine being at any other program. You can just look at their bench too and see thy don’t have that type of energy. But it’s the whole culture. It started out 18 strong, now its 19, its about to be 20 strong…Its amazing. The culture we’ve built, that coach Ham has built and that we have helped grow over the past 5 years, its unbelievable.”