Sept. 12, 2010
Head coach Mack Brown
I think - with a quick look - we had two plays we lost yardage again like last week. We still sputtered some. We didn’t finish drives consistently. We dropped a touchdown pass. We’ve still got some things we can improve [upon]. I do think we’re getting some identity now and we didn’t have a lot last week. I’m proud of Malcolm Williams stepping up and making some plays. I’m proud of Mike Davis. I thought that both Fozzy [Whittaker] and Cody Johnson made some difficult runs. We did a good job with them. Again, I thought Garrett got better.
Defensively, we played hard, we played tough. We couldn’t get the quarterback on the ground. The guy is really slippery. We called corner blitzes three different times and couldn’t knock him out and maybe gotten a fumble. We couldn’t get him on the ground. He did a tremendous job. He threw some balls up for us and we just didn’t get our hands on them. We had too many penalties on defense that were not only huge penalties, but they stopped third down stops and gave them first downs and let them stay on the field in the third quarter much longer than we hoped. Defensively, we also did not come up with a turnover this week, and that’s something we’ve got to do.
I felt like overall in the kicking game that we did a good job. The kickoffs out of the end zone help us. The kickoff coverage was good all but once. There was one out to the 34 [yard line] when they had their fake reverse. Our punt return and punt game was good. They didn’t have any yards in return. We had a lot of yards in return. Christian Scott and Blake [Gideon] nearly blocked one again. We just can’t seem to get our hands on them. We were right there for them. Our kickoff return, I thought, was average. I thought other than that, the kicking game was good.
We didn’t do a lot of things to make the score get out of hand, but I thought we played a really good, solid football game. You’ve got to give Wyoming credit. I thought they played hard like they did up there last year. It was a very similar game.
On the way the team responded being down 7-6: Coming right back and scoring immediately, I thought it jump started us. Then to stop them and score again offensively, I thought it was really a good sign. We told them all week and in pregame that this would be a game where we’d start seeing their personality come out. They needed to be more competitive and get more excited about things. I thought they did all that tonight.
On Mike Davis: Mike had seven catches for over 100 yards or something. He’s real fast. He caught the ball. Last week he played a lot. The ball just didn’t come to him. We didn’t throw very much. Tonight the ball was in his hands. John Chiles hurt his groin a little bit, so he had to come out of the game. Marquise [Goodwin] got hurt on his little reverse and he had to come out of the game. We were thin there right before the end of the half when all of this started happening. They probably saw how those two young ones played and got well. They came back in the fourth quarter and played better. Mike Davis is going to be a good player. We’re glad to see Darius White getting more opportunities as well.
On the team’s improvement from last week: I saw a lot of improvement. They had more fun tonight. I thought they were more into the game instead of kind of standing around watching as a bunch of freshmen would do. It seemed that Jackson Jeffcoat was out there a lot and making plays. I know Will [Muschamp] was on him a lot. That means he was doing some good things. We told the freshmen that they were no longer freshmen. They had to start being older and playing like they’re varsity guys because they are. Now that the two out-of-conference games are out of the way, we’ll have to play much better against [Texas] Tech. We think that there are pieces now, that if we put them together, we’ve got a chance to play good.
On not scoring a lot of points early: We’d like to score 50. I’m more worried about the end than the start. I think we did score [on] the first drive, so that’s better. That stat about scoring first is huge for us. I’m not sure why, but it’s huge. So that was better. We have to give Justin Tucker credit. He kicked off better tonight and he made his field goals. He had two. They were right down the middle and they were strong. He got them off quick. I think that what we’ve been trying to do, and what the offense therefore is trying to do is figure out who we are. Last week we wanted to make a point to run the ball. Tonight we wanted to be more balanced. I thought really and truly that happened. Wyoming came in with the way we ran it last week and stacked everybody inside. They were playing inside techniques. Greg [Davis] was trying to be stubborn early and we just decided to go ahead and be who we want to be and be more wide open and be more balanced. That’s why we picked up the second quarter.
On RB Fozzy Whittaker’s touchdown run: It was a great run. It was a counter play and he broke a lot of tackles. It was a 38-yard run or something like that. I thought Fozzy ran well throughout the game. He’s earning more playing time. I was really proud of Cody [Johnson] at the end. Cody moved the pile like we expect him to. Hopefully he came out with his ankle fine. We’ve got to look at how you play them. The two [Whittaker and Tre’ Newton] are more like each other, and then Cody is so different than the other two that we need to figure out does Cody start the game or is he better at the end when the tacklers are a little more tired? He moved the pile well in the fourth quarter.
On playing Texas Tech in Lubbock: Lubbock is a good place to play. It’s a fun place to play. We’ve played there six times and we’ve won three. They’re aware that it’s been a tougher place for us to play. We’ve played them six times at home and we’ve won all six. They’ll be excited about Lubbock and they’ll understand that challenge. That’s one of the things we challenged them about tonight is that they needed to get into the game and be excited about it from the beginning to the end, because next week we’ll have to play better than we have in the first two games to win.
On the inside wide receiver position: It’s such a key spot, because it’s a mismatch on linebackers and safeties inside. Mike [Davis] is tall. He’s fast. He’s got great hands. In fact, I don’t think he dropped a ball. I think everything that was to him he caught. He made something happen after the catch. We were really conscious of blocking downfield, so that will be interesting to see if they did better in that area in this game. We’re also very conscious about running backs making yards after contact, because we haven’t done that as well in the last two years as we need to. I thought that was better tonight. We’re very conscious of the same thing with the wide receivers. I thought that Garrett [Gilbert] made some plays with his feet which helped us tonight also.
On what identity he saw from the team: I thought that when they got behind, they didn’t like it. They jumped back and wanted to get back on top of them immediately. I thought they did that with confidence. I thought they got a three-and-out to start the second half and then drove right down and scored, which is what they know we need to do to be successful. The scores right before the half, the stops, the scores right after the half tell me that they know how to win. We still haven’t really just put somebody away in the third and fourth quarter like I’d like. That’s something that will come in time.
Offensive coordinator Greg Davis
On what the offense can do to create more point production: We just have to finish the drives. In both of the first ball games, if I am not mistaken, in the first time out, we have had 11 drives that resulted in field goals, so we just have to do a better job of converting on third down situations to finish those drives out.
On WR Mike Davis: Mike played like he has practiced. He has the ability to get open. He has the ability to find open spots. He has the ability to run out the catch, which he showed together. Without looking at all the blocking and all of the other things, his production obviously stands out.
On whether there is a “feeling out” process with this offense: Certainly over the last two years, we knew going into the ballgame exactly how we were going to play and the direction that we were going to go. We are still in a process. We were not under center as much tonight as we were. We told the players going in that we were going to work more from the gun, but we still wanted to be able to run the ball. Fozzy [Whittaker] cuts in and gives you a spot. Cody [Johnson] ran tonight the way he ran in camp, so we are still trying to find out how all of the roles are going to be defined. The big thing is that we just have to be more consistent. I see flashes of things that are really exciting, but the inconsistency is the thing that we have to work on before we head into conference next week.
On the end of the first half: I thought there were spots at the end of the first half that were really huge. Looking up and there’s 5:50 to go, and you’re down seven to six, and we went down and scored. We were able to get the ball back, and Mike Davis converted some, so it gives your entire offense a boost. Then we came out and had a couple of third down conversions to start the third quarter and went down and scored.
On the inside receiver spot: It’s a critical spot, and it’s obviously what Jordan [Shipley] played. There’s a lot of freedom with that spot. The last third down throw to Mike [Davis] was an option route where Garrett [Gilbert] has to see if he’s going to pivot, if he’s taking it out, and there’s a feel to that spot, and Mike did a good job with it tonight.
On the play QB Garrett Gilbert made before RB Fozzy Whittaker’s big run: They brought a weak corner blitz, and our line did a good job. We had an option not to call off the front side and Garrett felt pressure and spun to his right. It was a huge play. It was one of those off schedule plays that, offensively, you need. You need to make a few first downs . Either the quarterback leaves the pocket or he bides time. You never know how many times that leads to points, and obviously, that one did. It was a huge play by Garrett, getting out of the pocket, keeping his eyes open and being a passer as long as he could.
On how well the team roles are defined at this point: There are still some things that we need to evaluate. We’ll go back and look at it. We do know this, in a season this long, we need all [the players]. We do want to crystallize a little bit of what everyone does best. That’s what we’ll continue to work on.
Defensive coordinator Will Muschamp
On Wyoming QB Austyn Carta-Samuels: He is a very good athlete. He’s got a great sense in the pocket. We’ve got to finish those plays, though. You have to give him some credit. He made some nice plays, but too many opportunities where we’re on the ball, running with the quarterback—we did an outstanding job as far as our pressure package in getting our guys free run with the quarterback. We’ve got to make those plays.
DE Sam Acho
On containing Wyoming QB Austyn Carta-Samuels: Samuels is a great quarterback. He has some legs, so we had to do our best to contain him and keep him from running around. He broke free once or twice on us, but for the most part we did a good job. There were a couple times where we missed some big plays.
CB Curtis Brown
On if expectations are met after the first two games: I felt we played well, but there is much more improvement that we need to do.
On how the team played together: We did much better as a team than last week. I feel like we took care of business. Obviously, we still have some things to get through, that is just the way it is through the weeks. I feel pretty good about this performance. We’ll go back tomorrow and look at the film and correct what needs to be corrected.
On what needs to be fixed: The things are fixable. We could have done more, but overall it was a solid game by the defense. We gave up some plays, but with football, you just have to make sure you have it fixed by next week.
On how the team is progressing: This is just the second game, we still have a long season ahead. But we will build up, and we’re already getting better each practice.
On the importance of this week: It is getting to Conference, so we have to tighten up. Today was just a stepping stone.
On the offense providing a spark: We feed off of each other. I was surprised with all the players that stepped up on offense. But we’re a team, we all have to pull together when it is needed.
WR Mike Davis
On his 45-yard touchdown catch as a game-changer: It’s a good experience for me. I made a good catch, sprinted outside and saw daylight and had to go get it. I want to thank Garrett [Gilbert] for the pass and looking there because it was open. The line had good protection, he got it off, and I scored a touchdown. I saw daylight, I saw all the fans, and I just had to make them smile, make them happy.
On playing a more active role in the game than the previous week: I really wasn’t disappointed about it. I was just going to practice, working hard, working on blocking for the other guys and getting the other receivers open. Patience is the key for me; I’m just waiting and whatever comes my way, I’m going to catch it and contribute to the team the best way I can.
On adapting to the inside wide receiver position: I’ve been watching [Jordan] Shipley and seeing how he played the spot. A lot of great receivers came through Texas and I’ve been watching them. I also learned from [James] Kirkendall, [Malcolm] Williams, John Chiles and DeSean Hales, and they’ve taught me a lot. I’m just steadily learning and hope to be keep getting better as a receiver.
QB Garrett Gilbert
On WR Mike Davis: Mike is a guy who came in during the summer, and he was very eager to learn the offense. He was jumping in there during 7 on 7, and he is a very smart guy. He did a great job tonight running after plays and then making the catch.
On the offense overall: I felt like on offense that we were able to move the ball pretty well, and I felt we were able to get into a rhythm as the first half went on and into the third quarter. I felt like offensively we were able to find what we wanted to as the game went on.
On what sparked the team at the end of the first half: We were able to get a couple of plays off of the motion in the first half. Mike Davis ran a great route, and obviously made a great play afterwards with the ball, so I think that play and Fozzy’s run was a spark for us.
On what helped the team: I think just finding our rhythm as an offense at the end of that half, helped us just kind of relax and start just playing with passion, emotion, and just having some fun out there.
OL Michael Huey
On adjustments the team made after going down 7-6: There is not going to be any negativity. Everyone is lifting each other up, telling each other we can do it, that we’re going to be the best, we can do this, and we can pull through.
On blocking in long running plays: Usually when I get my block done, I like to go downfield and find another guy. Tonight I saw Fozzy [Whittaker] get a little break so I ran and hit another linebacker and just try to help him out.
RB Cody Johnson
On if he would like to be the running back that starts or finishes: It really doesn’t matter. As long as we’re winning games and get to go back to where we were last year, I’m fine. I will accept my role as it comes.
On his health: I practiced Tuesday and all week. The ankle has its times. But rehab and things like that make the ankle feel better, and it will eventually be 100% again.
On his late touchdown score: The offensive line blocked it perfectly. A person with both legs hurt could have gotten in there, it was easy and that’s what they do.
DE Eddie Jones
On the defense’s performance overall: I think we did well. We just have to continue to work to get better, so we can be a better defense.
On the pressure on the quarterback: Our defensive backs were able to hold them in coverage and keep them locked down, so we’re able to get a lot of pressure. If we can get a lot of pressure, we hope they can make plays on the back end. Coach Muschamp put in a good defensive scheme, so we knew where he was going to roll out, which way to flush out, and when he wanted to stay in the pocket. So we just tried to hold him and contain him, where he would come underneath and someone in the middle could make a play.
On DE Jackson Jeffcoat’s performance: Jeffcoat did real well tonight. He is stepping up and becoming a good player. He just needs to keep working like he is.
On the importance of the second-half shutout: We always try to pitch a shutout. We went out and that was our goal. We came back out after halftime and we wanted to shut them out and that’s what we went out and did.
On the identity of the team: It’s coming together slowly but surely. Every day we go back to work, we put one step more towards that identity.
On Big 12 play coming this weekend: It’s coming early. We’re going to enjoy this win tonight. We’ll be back at work tomorrow for Tech.
On how the team improved from last game: The team keeps pushing one another, continuing to fuel that fire that we have, continuing to play as a team, as a defense, and overall having that intensity overall.
DT Kheeston Randall
On the offense having a long drive before the half: That’s big for us because the more they’re on the field the more rest we get on defense, and we’re going to be fresh. It’s going to help us improve going into next game against [Texas] Tech, which is going to be a big game.
On the team having more fun: We came out with a relaxed attitude, just going out, trying to have fun and act like it was practice, pretty much. We practice hard so we just transferred it over to the game.
On playing an elusive quarterback: That was fun. He was a good player, a sophomore. We just have to have balanced rushing lanes and that’s all you have to do to stop that, but he still had a few good runs and we’re going to fix that going into the next game.
On the team having an identity: Yeah, we have one. I think we all have different personalities. We just like being around each other, [I guess] the attitude is fun.
LB Keenan Robinson
On improvements made between the first and second weeks of the season: We played hard last week, but the enthusiasm and having fun wasn’t the same as it was this week. This week we made sure that we had fun every play out there and played together and everyone was on the same page, and we just went out there and acted like we were kids again.
On his thoughts when the team went down 7-6: Last year when we played them, it was a close game and I knew that we were capable of taking it away on defense and eventually we would put up points on the other side of the ball. So nothing really went through my mind. Playing Texas defense was all we had to do.
On this game being a good warm-up for next week’s Big 12 game: I feel like it was good just because Tech does some similar things, such as the five-wide. So I feel like it was a good warm up just because we are going to see some of the same things we saw this week in this game next week in Lubbock.
On how it feels to win the home opener: It feels great. Every time we come in the stadium we want to make sure we win and make sure we make the [our fans] happy.
RB Fozzy Whittaker
On splitting two defenders on that run: It seemed like whenever I got hit by both of them I guess they both canceled out and that’s how I was able to stay up. Like I said, all the credit goes to the [offensive] line. I wouldn’t have been able to make it that far had they not did their job.
On playing to a higher standard tonight: I feel like we did. We are just enjoying this win while we can. Wyoming played hard but we just came out with the win so we’re enjoying it tonight and getting ready for Texas Tech.
On feeling comfortable running more plays out of shotgun: I can do both - either way. However they call it, it doesn’t matter. I just know the [offensive] line is going to do their job and I just put my trust all in them.
On his thoughts when looking at the scoreboard and seeing his team down: It was one of those things where they just had scored and I said, ‘Offense, we have to go answer the bell.’ That’s the same mentality that everybody on the offense took and I feel like we did that.
Head coach Dave Christensen
On the events of this week following the death of freshman Ruben Narcisse: Everyone is well aware that we lost a player this week. We had Ruben’s initials on our helmet tonight so we honored him with that which we will do for the remaining of the time that he would have been with us. It was a very difficult week. We will have a service for him on Monday in Laramie and some of us will attend another ceremony on Friday in Miami.
On the team’s response: They responded extremely well. It was hard to game plan the rest of Monday. They did a great job with preparation and I thought they practiced hard all week. They were very competitive which they have been all year. And they came out tonight and gave a tremendous effort.
On Texas’ reception to Wyoming this week: All I have to say is that the people of Texas have been sensational with our tragedy this week. They couldn’t have been better. I was greeted at the locker room on Friday by the President of the university and the Athletic Director and I have never experienced anything like that in my life. I just want to tell the people that we really appreciate how kind they were to us and everything they did for us.
RB Alvester Alexander
On the emotions considering the past week: The coaches are always inspiring us and telling us to come in and try and get a big upset and shock the nation, and that is what we all have in our minds. To come in and play as hard as we could no matter what happened.
On the back-to-back touchdowns: We just have to toughen up, get at it again and no matter what happens you have to be prepared for it.
On this Texas team compared to last year: It was still a tremendous team and we knew coming in to expect to play a big ball game. They are ranked and we knew already they were going to be a good team so there was no difference from last year.
SS Shamiel Gary
On accomplishing playing for Ruben: I think I did alright, and the whole point was to represent Ruben and let everyone know that he is not forgotten. I feel like I played alright, and I could have played a little better.
On back-to-back touchdowns and missed tackles: It was missed tackles. It was frustrating and I pride myself on tackling and I remember that play because I missed the tackle. We missed a couple tackles so we need to come back and get to working again.
On this year against Texas compared to last: I don’t think we really played different. I think as a defense we played pretty much the same, just missed tackles and that is what it really came down to. That is the big difference between this game and last year’s game.
CB Marcell Gipson
On the frustrating play and missing tackles: We were in a deep zone and he bit in. And it was not just that - there were a lot of things that happened before and why he was so open and I have to make that tackle. There is no excuse for that and it was frustrating, but I got that next play.
On the back-to-back touchdowns: That’s football. It happens sometimes and I usually bounce back from it. I think we did OK until the end of the game. They got the momentum and they took advantage of it.
On this game compared to last meeting: I think our defense overall is better, to be honest, and we still lost. So I can’t even compare this to last year. But we still lost both years, so we didn’t do much better.