Oct. 29, 2011
Box Score |
Head coach Mack Brown
Opening statement:I'm excited about the win. I thought this was probably as physical as we've been around here for a long time. To rush for 441 yards is exceptional. I thought that we did a better job throwing the ball tonight as well. We didn't have to throw it as much. We'll have to continue to grow in that area. The defense totally dominated the game. A few too many penalties, and there was a turnover or two. Other than that we didn't make the fourth-and-six inches on the goal line. We had the interception and got out of field goal range once. So those were the three mistakes that I remember offensively. Other than that I thought the guys played hard and played well. Unlike Iowa State, I thought they did finish the game this time and played much better in the third and fourth quarter than they did up there.
On recalling an offense ever having such few plays:I can't. I looked it up at halftime. You try to get a feel of what's happened in the first half before you see the stats. I think they had 13 plays for 10 yards at halftime. We had 58 plays, so we were actually worried about substituting our offense because they were so tired. I just thought the defense forced three-and-outs, and they had a couple of turnovers. Our kicking game did a good job. They've been really good at returns and I thought our kickoff coverage team was much better tonight. This is a win where I think everybody came out healthy enough. I think [WR] Jaxon [Shipley] will be okay. [DB] Leroy [Scott's] okay. They're checking him right now. So I've gotten good reports on both of those for early returns. Everybody gets to play, so it's such a great morale boost. It lets them understand that they can be good. They've still got a lot of work to do.
On freshmen RBs Joe Bergeron and Malcolm Brown having 100-yard games: We kept Joe in until he broke 100 [yards], because he was at 80 and we thought it would be fun for two freshman backs to have over 100 yards. I though Joe ran really well. We'll have to go back and look at the fumble and see how it was stripped. In fact, he said his thigh, or his knee hit it and he kicked through at some point. But I thought the offensive line did a great job. We put [OT] Luke Poehlmannin at tight end some tonight, and that really helped us. Here's a 300-pound guy at 6'6 or 6'7. We've been having some trouble knocking people around on the edges. From what I saw, because I knew he was in there and the play-calls, it looked like he did a great job. So I think he might have been a difference in some of those plays as well.
On what it means to have such a dominating win:I think it's really important. Especially when you lose the previous two games. You win four, you're starting to feel really good about yourself. Then you have the awful game at Oklahoma. You have chances at Oklahoma State. The guys are smart. They sit around and watch football all the time. I don't know the final score with Oklahoma and Kansas State was today, but it was a lot. And Oklahoma State dominated. So they've played two teams that may be as good as anybody in the country. That gives them some hope as they get ready to finish the season. The other thing that we felt like, we know these last five games are going to be tough, but we've got a chance in each one of them now. I'm not sure you could have said that at the beginning of the season.
On getting the ball more to WR Marquise Goodwin tonight:We usually as a staff discuss that a lot. We felt that people had tried to take Jaxon [Shipley] away the last couple of weeks. [WR] Mike [Davis] got the ball 10 times. Marquise runs it deep. He wasn't getting the ball enough. But [co-offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach] Bryan [Harsin] knew that. [Co-offensive coordinator/running backs coach] Major [Applewhite] knew that. We all knew that. We made a conscious effort tonight to make sure we got the ball in his hands more tonight. And from their standpoint, he's just now learning what to do. Because he came so late. He missed spring practice. He missed all summer, and he missed the preseason. So it's very unusual that he would even play. We felt like we had a speed advantage on the corners to Kansas. So that was another reason that we could get him the ball. In fact, I think he fell once when he might have scored.
On the defense's pressure on Kansas QB Jordan Webb:We put so much emphasis on sacks and penetration over the last two weeks because we weren't getting either. We also knew that Kansas was rushing the ball for over 200 yards per game. They were averaging over 405 yards per game I think, and 30 points. So we really were concerned that they would try to keep the ball and that we would not be able to get off the field defensively. So the guys really took the challenge. Just looking, I thought it was [DE] Jackson [Jeffcoat's] best game by far. I think he had two sacks. I know he was back there a lot and hit the quarterback on those ones.
On QB David Ash's performance:I thought our protection was much better. And David threw the ball to the right places. He didn't get enough air on the one. I thought the tight end was open for the touchdown, but it was an interception. He just didn't get enough air under it. But he will learn. I didn't think we handled the one-minute before the half really well, even though we got a field goal out of it. But we lost a bunch of yards on one hit and ran backwards and got out of field goal range. So there were still things that we feel like we can improve in that area. But he scrambled for the touchdown. He ran for a number of first downs tonight. He was successful on the option. He really throws the ball well when he's moving. And he made some third-down throws. So I thought that everything he did was tonight was better than we've seen him do.
On how it feels to win their first Big 12 game at home since 2009:Well, we didn't win anywhere last year. We just stunk. You can make those numbers fit anything they want to. Now we're 3-1 at home. We're obviously playing better at home this year than we did last year. But obviously we didn't beat out-of-conference teams at home much either.
On the defensive starters running out on the field for Kansas's last series:To their credit, at halftime, it was huge to them to get a shutout. It's hard to get a shutout in college football anywhere. But it's really hard in the Big 12 with how many points are scored. I think one of the earlier games this year the young guys went in and gave up gashes. We said we were going to put the young guys in. But they didn't much ask at the end. Those seniors were going to go back in there. I told them if they had gone in there and gotten hurt and stopped them, we would have been having a discussion. But it was okay. I was happy for them. They're really proud of themselves tonight.
On asking so much of PK/P Justin Tucker: We're asking a whole lot. We punted once and then kicked off a lot. We let [P/PK] William Russkick off the last two kickoffs. But we gave [Tucker] last week off. We asked him to do nothing. Except to tune up and make sure he got his energy back. He's got six tough weeks here in a row. He's just really good at what he does. He's very smart. He's athletic. He's tough, and he's by far the best we've got right now to do it.
On LB Demarco Cobbs's injury: He's got that cast on. So like [S] Christian [Scott], sometimes he gets it hit a little wrong. I don't think it hurts him anymore because the cast is on there. But it's sore. He made a great play the play before. So hopefully he's fine. I don't get the report until Sunday. I saw Leroy [Scott] walking down to the doctors. I think he just got dinged in the head. So I don't think that's going to be anything more than that. And Jaxon [Shipley] was walking around at the end. So I think those guys will be fine.
Co-offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach Bryan Harsin
On success in the running game tonight: There are still a lot of things that we’ll go back on film and correct. There always is in a game. I thought this game we made new mistakes. We’re always talking about correcting the ones from the week before, and we did that. I’m really proud of the guys, just the way they played the entire game. One of the things we talk about is going out there and playing with an edge, doing your job and finishing. I thought those guys did. I thought we came out early and those guys were firing and playing hard. I thought for the most part, guys were doing their jobs and we finished the game the way we wanted to. Obviously, the rushing was huge for us because we wanted to be able to run the ball. The O-line, RBs, wide receivers down the field, everybody was doing their job in order to do that, and that’s a credit to those guys. It was a bye week [last week], just emphasizing that, putting time in there and having focus to go out there and do that and play with that toughness in order to get that done.
On the play of WR Marquise Goodwin: Marquise is a guy that, along with what we’re doing inside, really complements us on the outside at the perimeter. [RB] D.J. Monroe was in a bunch of that as well. So just finding more ways to try to distribute the ball is what we were doing - getting the ball in our playmakers’ hands. The backs did a great job inside, which obviously is going to help us on the perimeter. So we were just trying to stay balanced with inside-outside type runs and ‘Quise did a nice job of that. [WR] Mike Davis and [TE] D.J. Grant did a good job leading on some of those.[RB] Cody [Johnson] as well. Those guys are out there springing those types of runs for him, and he’s just getting out there and letting those guys do work for him and utilizing his speed.
On the play of QB David Ash: He made some good decisions out there. There are still a couple things. We want to eliminate the sacks. A couple trips down there in the red zone, we need to finish those drives and that’s just something that we’re going to continue to work on and emphasize - obviously the turnover in the end zone and being that close. In that situation in an early down, if it’s not there, throw it away. It comes down to just the decision making, and those are opportunities you really want as a quarterback. You want to be able to make that throw, and he felt like he was open for a quick second there. But that’s when it gets tight. That’s another learning experience at the quarterback position. You go back on tape, and we have to continue to work on those and eliminate those types of plays. I thought he played pretty well. I thought he managed the game with some of the checks and audibles he had. He was seeing what he needed to see and got us out of some plays that could have been bad. Each week he continues to get better in those areas and now it’s just focusing on those interceptions, those sacks. We eliminate those, and we’re moving in the right direction. I think it’s just him getting there and playing more. Getting more confident. Understanding what we’re doing. Experiencing some of those things in previous games that have been issues and learning from them. Like I said, we’re going to make mistakes. We’re going to make new ones, and I thought he did that tonight. We’ll go back in this game and work on correcting those before we get to playing [Texas] Tech.
On the play of OT Luke Poehlmann at tight end: It worked out good just having him out there as an opportunity to get another big body out there on the edge. He’s a guy that has done a really nice job and deserves to be out there. I think he’s practiced hard. We’re trying to figure out how to get guys that are working hard into the game, and that was an opportunity to do that for him. I thought tonight, without watching film, that he did his job. He set the edge. He got us out there on the perimeter by just being physical and being a bigger guy there on the edge and, it helped the run game.
On the play of RB Joe Bergeron: I thought Joe did really well, just watching from up there. We ran a lot of inside zone with him and that seems to be something he does very well. He did a nice job of just setting the play up and getting to the cut-back on the back side and just getting vertical. And he ran hard. You see that in practice. Joe runs downhill, and he runs hard and he has great balance and that showed up tonight. I thought he finished the run well. I know he had one turnover, tried to pull back out of a tackle there and the ball came out. I’ll have to go back and look at that and why and get that corrected. Just his mentality. The way he ran watching him [from] up there. He ran with a purpose. That’s what we want. We want our guys running downhill, and I thought our backs, all of those guys, did that tonight. When there was a crease, we weren’t dancing around. We were getting vertica,l and we were lowering our shoulder and trying to run physical.
On the play of RBs Malcolm Brown and Fozzy Whittaker: Fozzy and Malcolm, those two guys early in the game were getting downhill and we were getting positive yards. We’re putting ourselves in manageable situations, and that’s what we want to do on third downs, or converting those third and shorts. Getting the first down and getting down in the red zone. Fozzy did a great job with some of our Wildcat package and getting positive yards in those situations. Those guys continue to be guys that are physical runners, are downhill guys, are really tone-setters for early in the game.
On the present quarterback scenario: Case [McCoy] came in tonight and did everything we asked him to do. He continues to do that in practice. The deal on the quarterbacks is that we’re developing two guys, and that’s what we have at the quarterback position. We have to continue to develop our quarterbacks. In practice. In games. In those opportunities, we have to continue to do that. Both those guys have done a nice job in meetings, in practice, in preparing themselves. They both deserve to play. S that’s just where we are. We’re developing those guys. Case came in there and was two-for-two throwing the ball, and that’s just where we are right now.
On setting the tone in the first drive: You want to get a fast start. You want to come out there when you have the ball in your hands at the beginning of a game and go score. It’s good to get that momentum for your entire team. I know on the other side, when that defense gets a three-and-out, you feel great on offense. That’s our job. They’re going to give us the ball, and we need to go down and score and get that mojo going for the entire team. Let the defense go out there and do their job, and we just have to help each other out and play off each other. I thought we did tha,t and I think those guys look forward to doing that and driving down the field and making that happen and giving us some confidence.
Defensive coordinator/linebackers coach Manny Diaz
On overall defensive line play: We were seeing the improvement in the last couple weeks. We had mainly been playing passing teams, and last week we just hadn’t seen that kind of running yet. It was nice to see our guys being disruptive and making plays on the ball.
On worries about Kansas before the game: We had a lot of respect for their running game, but there were three things going into the game to focus on. A - their running game which we were able to stop. B - being there on third down which we were, and C - our offense. We just watch the game as fans for 40 minutes of the game.
On putting starters back in on the last series: They are a prideful bunch, and it meant a lot to them to keep that zero on the board. I was happy with their ability to stop them.
On anything new to coach this week: We may have a scrimmage tomorrow (laughs). Like I said, the credit goes to the offense.
RB Foswhitt Whittaker
On the success of the running game: Starting off the game early, Kansas came out firing on all cylinders. Those yards that we had to get were hard fought. Our plan was to wear them down over the course of the game and as you could see at the end, those holes started getting bigger and bigger. The O-line was just working their tails off. We have to give credit to them because they were the ones who made the holes and made it possible for us to rush for 441 yards.
On beating a Big 12 team: You never can take a win for granted. Just going off of our team bonding that we’ve been having this whole year, and just the way that we responded to this game coming off the bye week and not having won the past two games, it feels good. You can’t take it for granted, and we’re all excited and happy and we’re going to celebrate in the locker room with our teammates.
LB Keenan Robinson
On the overall defense: That is it right there. That is football for us. If we make it seem one-sided and kind of move the ball [on offense] and when they pass it we are there to rush them. We played full defense tonight, and that has been what we wanted to do since the beginning of the season.
On the defensive line and making tackles for losses: Tonight we were just playing each run. They split a few runs and that was because of the one play on us that the guys were working on the scout team. But the thing is we have to cross the ball out there and see where to rush them. We did a great job keeping on the ball. That is how you win games on defense.
RB Malcolm Brown
On dominating the run game: That was our game plan for the week. We focused on it a little bit more this week. The offensive line did a great job of getting the push and we kept on pounding the rock.
On RB Joe Bergeron’s breakout game: Joe is doing great. We always knew that every single one of our backs can do anything. We showed that tonight. Joe did a really good job. Nothing slowed down when he got into the game. It was a great game for all of us.
RB Joe Bergeron
On the offensive line: I have a lot of faith in the line. They have been working hard for two weeks, and I knew that we were going to come out and dominate.
On his mindset coming into the game: I was working hard. I’ve been getting a lot of mental reps. I was just waiting for my turn and waiting for my number to be called. When it did, I showed what I had.
DE Jackson Jeffcoat
On the defensive domination: It was big. It is very special when you can do something like that. We were talking to some of the older guys, and they were saying that they’ve never done anything like this. It’s special, and we can build from it.
On getting his first sack of the season: It felt great. I finally got that first one so I am going to keep on going after them.
QB David Ash
On how he has grown as a player: I’m learning to get the ball out quick and take what they give you without forcing anything. I struggled with that early on, trying to force things when they aren’t there. Now I have to learn to just take whatever they give me and keep improving in that area.
Head coach Turner Gill
Opening statement: Tough ballgame all the way around. Tough on our offense. Wasn’t expecting us to be totally shut down as far as moving the ball concerns, but you’ve got to give a lot of credit to their defense. They are very good. Their defensive front handled our offensive front, and that’s kind of the bottom line. I would rather of not had our defense on the field so much, but I liked how they played hard. They showed a lot of heart. Obviously the scoreboard was pretty lopsided, but it’s good to see that fight in our defensive guys. We forced some turnovers and had a good goal line stand. We just got to keep working. We need our coaches to get better, and we need to get better for next week.
LB Steven Johnson
On whether a game like this wears his team down: It does a little bit. I mean, I’m a person of a lot of faith, so there’s not a day where I’m going to give up. I’m going to keep going. Hopefully these things turn around because we still have four games ahead of us. We’re trying to establish the season. Me, personally, I’m not going to quit and my teammates aren’t.
On the defense playing so much in the first half: I know the first maybe two series they had the ball. I felt like the defense, we came out just a little bit flat and then we started to pick it up. We were on the field often, but that’s just how the game went. You can’t blame the offense for anything. I guess Texas, they had a good defense. They played well and, you know, Texas’ offense played well, as well. Being on the field [so] much, I mean, just getting more opportunities to just stop them, we forced a couple of turnovers and we went in at halftime feeling pretty good. Twenty-six at half time? I mean we felt like we were still in the game. There was nothing crazy that they were doing. It was just a football game. It was a boxing match. We felt like we were good as a defense going into the second half and then, it’s just one of those things.
S Bradley McDougald
On whether a game like this wears his team down: I mean, it can, but coach is going to keep doing a great job just keeping us close together. I know guys on the defensive side and offensive side are going to continue trying to be better. It’s the only thing we can do. If we fold, things can only get worse.
QB Jordan Webb
On tonight’s disappointing loss: It was really frustrating. I mean, we couldn’t get anything going. We have to tip our hats to Texas. They’re a good team. We didn’t play very well today.
On whether Texas’ defense was physical up front: Yeah, but we [have] just got to play better.
On whether Texas seemed to know what was coming offensively: No, it just comes down to us executing, really.
On whether it was difficult for his offense to find a rhythm: Yeah, it was definitely difficult to find a rhythm. Nothing was working that we were doing. No one really got into a rhythm. Just all-around, we didn’t play a good game, myself included.
On Kansas’ offense tonight versus the season overall: I mean, we kind of have been answering the bell throughout the season pretty well. We just couldn’t get going tonight, really.
On whether his offense is still progressing: Yeah, I still believe were moving in the right direction.Tonight we played a really good team. We didn’t play well. Whenever that happens, you’re not going to have a good game. We’ve just got to get back to practice tomorrow and come out with some energy.