UPDATED 6:45 p.m. ET: The original report USA Today Sports published included Keller's words out of context from the question he was asked, which was about whether he felt his team was under-seeded in the tournament. Keller's full post-game interview is available via Stephen F. Austin's official athletics website, with the full question and response below.
Q. Do you guys feel like you really were able -- Texas Tech is a 3 seed. You were really able to play with them and maybe were under seeded?
KYLE KELLER: I don't know. There's 68 teams in the tournament seeding that to me doesn't have anything to do with it. I coached the No. 1 seed in the tournament. We didn't make the Final Four. So to me seeds don't matter.
When the game starts, the game starts. And that's what we try to convince our kids. Our kids didn't -- they got to play against some dudes they knew. Ty knew some guys on their team. And the millenials today, they don't even watch college basketball. A lot of our guys didn't even know who those cats were because they don't watch the game. They're on their phone and doing that kind of stuff. I hate to say it, but as much as you or I or anybody in here watches the games, they don't. Or the NBA. They might watch the slam-dunk contest in February on TNT or whatever, but that's about the extent of it.
See below for original story.
Stephen F. Austin gave Texas Tech a run for its money in the NCAA Tournament's Round of 64 Thursday evening. Keenan Evans, a second-team All-American, took over in the final minutes, though, and the No. 3 seed advanced.
After the game, the Lumberjacks’ head coach made some interesting comments.
“The Millennials today, they don’t even watch college basketball,” said coach Kyle Keller, according to Josh Peter of USA Today Sports. “A lot of our guys didn’t even know who those cats (Texas Tech players) were because they don’t watch the game. They’re on their phone and doing that kind of stuff.
“I hate to say it, but as much as you or I or anybody in here watches the games, they don’t. Or the NBA. They might watch the slam-dunk contest in February on TNT or whatever, but that’s about the extent of it.”
Blame Millennials? Always a good option. Keller was not done.
“If I don’t read it and study it and learn and try to figure these kids out, I have no chance to coach,” he added. “Because the way I was taught as a child was, ‘Hey, you are going to eat what is on your plate if not, you’re going to sit here.’ I had to sit at the kitchen table one Saturday afternoon because I didn’t want to eat green beans or salmon patties."
“So we have a lot of green beans on our team meals, and I tell that story to our guys. But you have to adjust. You’d better learn to give, and some take with these kids, I think.”
Stephen F. Austin won the Southland Conference championship to advance to the tournament.