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College basketball coach gives inspiring speech to opposing team after win

Missouri men's basketball coach Cuonzo Martin went into the opposing locker room and complimented the Stephen F. Austin players after a Missouri victory.

by Scott Stump / / Source: TODAY

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Head coach Cuonzo Martin followed a hard-fought victory by his Missouri men's basketball team on Wednesday by delivering an inspiring speech - to the losing team.

Martin made a point to go into the visiting locker room after an 82-81 win over Stephen F. Austin to tell the Lumberjacks' players how tough a team they were.

Martin said it was the first time in his 18-year coaching career he'd felt compelled to visit another team's locker room after a game.

"I know you’re mad and upset guys, but you shouldn’t be mad because you’re a talented team," Martin said. “One thing I always tell our players, guys, is it doesn’t matter (what’s on) the front of the jersey. You all got just as much talent as we’ve got man.

"I don’t tell you that to make you feel good...I tell you real talk, man. I’ve never done this in my career. You all are a hell of a team, (you have a) hell of a coach."

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Martin's team has faced its own adversity after losing freshman Michael Porter Jr., one of the best players in the country, to a season-ending injury last month. Stephen F. Austin called Martin "the epitome of class" in a tweet featuring the video of his speech.

Here's hoping the two teams meet again during March Madness!

Follow TODAY.com writer Scott Stump on Twitter.

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