Nov. 12, 2011
On playing without Fozzy Whittaker: It's tough. He's our leader. He's our guy on offense. When you have the other two out anyway, we were going to lean heavily on Fozzy and Jeremy Hills today. I'm not going to put an injured player out there. Fozzy's done so well and had such a great year, we hate to see him get hurt.
On moving forward: I think we have to get home and grade this video and see who played well and see why we didn't move the ball better on offense and go back and start over on Monday.
On not capitalizing on chances to come back: We had some shots. The wind was huge. We overthrew one to Marquise [Goodwin] in the first quarter. If you noticed, just about all the points were scored into the wind except for the blocked punt. So when we didn't score but three in the first and they got theirs right after that, and then [wheb] we didn't score in the third, we knew we were in trouble.
On having multiple injuries during the game: It's a game about injuries. It's a game about numbers. We just said injuries can't be an excuse, even though they piled up today at more than I think I've ever seen at one position. We still have to do our best to win the game.
On Missouri leaving the Big 12: Gary's a good coach, and they'll go a good job. I hate to see them leave because I thought regionally they're a team that fits our conference. They've been in the Big Eight. They've been the Big 12, so I thought they fit here."
On the personal foul penalty in the first half: You know, it's just a call. The refs make calls. The next play was my fault because they scored so I don't fault the ref. I don't fault anybody. I fault myself because if not for me they wouldn't have scored. You win some, you lose some as far as calls. We lost that one, but that didn't give them the touchdown. We gave them the touchdown so it's on us as a defense."
On Fozzy Whittaker's injury: I told him I loved him, and I was sad for him. I wish the best for him, and I prayed for him as soon as I saw him go down. He's a fighter. He'll keep fighting and be alright.
On the mindset of the defense today: I mean, just like I've been saying all year, we're just here to set up the offense. Just keep backing them up. Like you saw on the blocked punt. We fought hard on the goal line to set the offense up for another opportunity to score.
On the defense: They only had two plays that determined the game. That long pass over the middle and that long run. You have to eliminate big plays to win games and that leads to touchdowns.
On moving the ball without their three top running backs: It's definitely a challenge. And we have to work on that in practice. When somebody goes down, the next guy has to be ready to step up. That's where leadership comes in. That's where you have to grow up and man up. You just go out there, execute and play. No matter what. No matter who's in there.
On quarterbacks: The quarterbacks showed leadership as they always do. We just couldn't get the ball moving like we wanted to. We have to go back to the drawing board and get it going for Kansas State."
On the play of the defensive line: It starts there, and our perimeter defense did not give up any big plays. They got a couple early third down throws on that one drive and they got the field goal, but nothing other than that for the remainder of the day. But our defense did a really good job of leveraging the football.
On RB Kendial Lawrence stepping up after RB Henry Josey went down: Obviously you have to feel really badly for Henry. He's getting an MRI right now as we speak. I do know now that it is serious. Now you got to have Kendial Lawrence fill in and De'Vion Moore's got to do that. That's just the spot we're at right now and hopefully he'll heal up pretty quick.
On the play of both teams' special teams: They got two points and we got three. We won that one. The disappointing thing was we didn't scoop the ball up and score. We just got a little too nervous back there, and we had a chance. That takes care of everything at the one-yard line at the point of attack three times and we said, "Let's go for it maybe." But I thought three points would make a difference in a three-score game. But I don't remember the last time we had a punt block. You've gotta give them credit. But our defense continuously in that second half went out there and played really, really well. When that happens, that changes the way we play offense. We can play more conservative, it can be a field position game or a kicking game, and we'll make sure to try to utilize as much time as we can.
On focusing for the remainder of the season: It's so mental. You can talk about injuries, but the bottom line is the mental part of sport and competition is what it's all about. We played a great football team today and were fortunate enough to beat them. We're going to play well next week. There's so much out there now. This really shines light here, and it's my job as the head coach to make sure we take advantage of this.