Sept. 21, 2009
QB Colt McCoy
On having the flu: I don't think it affected me much mentally. I feel like I was mentally prepared for the game. The first half I just had no energy and I felt weak. I felt drained. I would come back to the sidelines and my arms and legs would be shaking. I just didn't have any energy. I came in at halftime and ate a bunch, drank a lot of fluids and got recharged for the second half. I thought I played really well. I don't think I missed a ball in the second half. I don't know why I got the flu, but I was able to overcome it in the second half and play pretty well.
On game day pressures: You can't expect to go out there and play perfect every week. I feel like we're playing great; we're 3-0. That's the most important thing for me. If I complete one pass a game, but we win that's what everybody remembers. History remembers the wins. There are a lot of ways that we can improve on offense. We need to start playing more consistent and play four quarters. I think all across the board for me personally and for everybody, the defense is playing lights out, and really helping us. When we came in at halftime we said, "Hey, look, we need to give the defense something to play for. They held Tech to three points in the first half. That's unbelievable. We need to give them some encouragement and something positive that they can build off of." We came out and played well in the second half. We know how good we can be, we just have to continue to work, prepare and be more consistent.
On offensive frustrations: Those are times of frustrations when the defensive gets a turnover and you have a short field and you don't convert. Those things are going to happen in games and as a quarterback those things are frustrating, but you're the guy that everybody looks to. You have to go to the sidelines and say, "Hey, you know what? That was a great protection. You guys picked up the blitz, it was perfect, but we just mishandled the ball. Keep your head up, stay in the game, stay focused and we'll be all right." That's just something you have to do as a quarterback and a leader.
On John Chiles: You can get the ball in his hands and he's able to make plays; little slip screens and things like that. He's really good and effective, and he's getting better every week.
On things he can work on: I really feel like I'm playing good football right now. We had two tipped balls, and interceptions. Interceptions are probably the most frustrating things. Out of the ones that have happened this year, I've thrown one that I could have controlled, and the others were just tough. The offensive line is playing great. I haven't gotten hit by my responsibility all year; having my eyes right and understanding my protection and hot balls - I feel like I'm really on top of it. I have to continue to work and not slack. Overall, we just need to play better. After looking at the film, we did some good things in the first half. It's 11 guys pulling together and doing the right thing on the same play. We have one guy miss a block, or pull the wrong way, and it really kills us and gets us off the field at third down. Consistency is key. If we had been playing perfectly for three games there wouldn't be that much to play for from here on out. We understand there's a lot of room for improvement and that's why we're happy and excited to get on the field again.
On team improvement: Well, we definitely want to be better than we were last year. We played well, but there were a lot of things that we made mistakes on. It's a credit to their defense; they move around, you don't know if they're playing zone or man, they're never in the same spot before the snap as they are when the ball is snapped. They're a confusing defense that tries to get somebody free every snap. I think we're definitely going to have to run the ball to get them out of the stuff they do early on, and then just play consistent. I think that will be the theme for us this week.
On Tre' Newton: We have some running backs that are banged up a little bit. They all can run the ball effectively and do good things, but Tre' seems to be doing really well right now; he's making plays. I feel comfortable with him back there for sure.
OG Charlie Tanner
On the offense: At the start of any game, especially in front of a record crowd of 102,000 people, everybody comes out all fired up with their adrenaline high. You have to give Tech credit. They came out and played a great game against us. For ourselves, the main thing we need to do is get back in the film room and take what we did this past week and improve upon it. As long as we're getting better each week and working on being more consistent, we're going to have success in the future.
On Colt McCoy: Nobody feels good when they have the flu, but he was there at every practice and worked out hard. He stayed in the film room and studied and studied, and knew he had to do a little extra because he didn't feel good. I look up to that. I like having him behind me, because I know that he's going to do whatever it takes to win. As far as the younger guys, he's somebody who they can look up to as well.
On this week's game: I watched the game on TV last year, because I was hurt, but I've heard a lot about them. I heard it was a crazy atmosphere up there. Their defense is really good. I watched some film on them this morning and they really have the aspect of confusion. We really have to watch where their backers are, watch if they're in three or four down and just be really buttoned up.
On offensive improvements: As the offensive line, our number one goal is to protect Colt. Besides that, we have to be able to run the ball. As long as we can do that effectively, it's going to help with a lot of things like game control, running the clock down and it's also going to open up the pass. Colt's such a great quarterback, and if we can open up the pass and give him enough time to go through his routes, he's going to pick any defense apart and that's the great part about Colt.
C Chris Hall
On what he remembers from playing UTEP last season: It was crazy in El Paso. What an awesome atmosphere. That stadium nestled in those mountains and people sitting up on the ridges. It was a really, really cool atmosphere to play in.
On every game being a big game: Every game that we're going to see is going to be a big one. Everybody's going to bring their best effort, and so are we. That's what we expect this week out of UTEP, that's what we're going to bring too. That'll be the same throughout the rest of the year.
On QB Colt McCoy's attitude during games: Colt, he always stays positive during every game. Whether we're up, down, wherever the momentum seems to be turning, he's always up. That just shows how calm, cool and collected he can be in every situation. That was really a boost for us. When we had that interception, he's right there saying we had to keep fighting, keep putting forth the nice effort, and things are going to break open.
On RB Tre' Newton: Tre' is a great guy. As far as character and being a team player, he's a great, great fit for our team. He played a great game. He's a great guy to block for. I feel like all our backs do a great job, and Tre' has just produced.
On if it matters to him who is running the ball: From my perspective, and I think from our coaches perspective as well, we just want to see productive numbers and W's. From an offensive line perspective, whether we use 10 guys or five, we just want W's. Whoever and however many give us the best chance to accomplish that, that's what we're for.
WR Jordan Shipley
On what the offense needs to improve on in the first half: I think we've just got to execute in the first half better. I think it is third downs, we've got to find a way to convert in the first half. We played decent. We've got to tweak a few things and make some plays on third downs and I think we'll be fine.
On how good this team is so far: It's hard to say. I think we've got a great group of guys out there. The line's playing really well, obviously Colt's playing well, the running backs are running well. I think we've got a chance to be pretty special. It's hard to tell after just a few games where you are compared to where you want to be. I think we've got a chance to be pretty good.
On the running game: It's great for us as an offense to have a running game that you feel good about. Tre' is running the ball really well, and I think a lot of the credit goes to the offensive line opening those holes for him. Whenever the running game is working, it opens up the passing game. It's definitely good for our offense whenever we can run the ball.
On the play of WR Dan Buckner in the flex position: Dan's looked really good at that spot since he started working there in the spring, all summer long and into camp. I think he's developed a feel for that spot. He's catching the ball great and running great routes. We're all really excited about what Dan's doing there.
On the attitude of the team: The thing about this team, we love playing football so much it does not matter who is out there. We love playing the game. That's the great thing about this team and the way coach Brown approaches every game. It's almost like everybody has a sense that the next game might be the last game we ever play, so we've got to play as hard as we can every single time we're out there. I think we'll come out and do ready to play this weekend.
OT Adam Ulatoski
On RB Tre' Newton's performance Saturday night: It was exciting to see him play on Saturday and we're excited he's playing so well for us.
On what Newton does well: He just runs really hard, and I think everyone sees that. He lowers his shoulder and he drives his feet.
On UTEP: They do a whole lot of things on defense. They blitz a lot, they blitz from all over, they slant and twist their line. We're just going to have to be really buttoned up and really focused on what we have to do.
On QB Colt McCoy's leadership after his interceptions on Saturday: Colt's his biggest critic. He was just saying we needed to keep on going, keep on fighting, and we were going to get this going. Colt's a great leader and he's leading this team to a 3-0 start right now. We're really excited about that.
DE/LB Sergio Kindle
On what the team did to prepare for Texas Tech this year: Basically what I did this year is looked at last year's film and criticized myself on how I did based on the number of rushes I did and how I performed and the technique I used. I got tired last year. This year it was a big deal as a team to try to play fast because we knew they were going to have a fast tempo. I felt like if we got in shape, then we'd be able to run with them longer than we did last year. We played well because of it.
On sacking Taylor Potts on Saturday night: He sat back there a half-second longer than the last two quarterbacks (for ULM and Wyoming) and I finally got there. (The offensive tackle) is a great blocker, I was just able to get past him this time and I finally got one.
On if he was getting frustrated with his lack of sacks: I wouldn't say so. I feel like if I'm close enough to affect the angle the quarterback is throwing the ball, that is big.
On how the defense performed against Texas Tech: I think our defensive speed looked a lot faster this game than we did in the previous two. It's a building process getting into actual football shape. It's starting to look good. It's starting to all come together for us. We're starting to read offenses a little better than we did the other two games. It should only get better from here.
On UTEP: Those guys were a high-powered offense. They had 400 yards on us and we were a pretty good defense last year. They got over 100 yards (rushing) on us and that's the first thing that we try to take away, stopping the run. They got 145 yards on us, and regardless of whether we won the game or not, that's still a loss in our books. We've got to stop the run, and if you make a team one-dimensional, it will be an easier game for you.
On preparing with the same intensity for every opponent: You have to be prepared for every team every week. It just so happened that we got Tech early. Regardless of if it's a conference game or not, we've got to play them like they're OU. We prepare for every team like we're in the Big 12 championship or the national championship. That's the type of game it is to us. We don't prepare less or more for any team.
WR John Chiles
On how the switch to wide receiver has gone: It's been a learning experience. Each and every day I get a little bit more comfortable. The more I do it, the more comes to me. Getting with Colt (McCoy), coach (Greg) Davis, coach (Bobby) Kennedy, they've been great helping me with the switch.
On his focus at receiver: My main focus is to try to make as many plays as I possibly can. We've got guys like (Jordan) Shipley who is our number one receiver, and he basically opens it up for James (Kirkendoll) and Malcolm (Williams) and myself to make plays.
On QB Colt McCoy's leadership: He just tells us to keep our heads up. We've just got to get in a rhythm. That's been the focus of the last couple games, to get everybody on the same page at the same time.
On what the wild Horn package does to a defense: Probably just a wildcard, something that mixes everything up. I just give the defense something to look at, something for them to focus on in practice.
On the success of the wild Horn versus the Q-package last year: Last year when I came into the game the defense keyed in on me once I was in. Me being on the field more often, it doesn't tip off what we're about to do. It gives me a better opportunity to make plays.
On his eagerness to unveil the wild Horn against Texas Tech: The more we do it, the more we practice it, the more excited I get about it each week. The entire week I kept thinking about it, just kind of imaging what I was going to do once it happened. I was really excited about it.
DT Lamarr Houston
On Sergio Kindle's sack: Yeah, it was one of the hardest sacks I've seen in a while. I've seen that same exact hit two years ago with Brian Orakpo.
On how the defense limited Texas Tech: I think we just do what is expected of everybody. It was a team effort on Saturday really, the offense kept us in the game at times and I felt like we kept the offense in the game at times. We did what we were supposed to do and I feel like it was a team effort.
On being compared to other teams: I really don't compare us to anybody, what I do is just look at the game plan this week and see how we can execute it. We'll see how well we can execute it this week, and if we grade out, we do well, that's what we want, if we don't, then let's fix it and make improvements for next week. That's all I really focus on.
On what the team is going to be focused on: We are going to try and work on the run. This team is a heavy run team, you know they pass the ball some but this team is a running team. Last year they had 100-plus yards rushing on us and we've got to get that fixed. So you know, we've got to get our run game and work on getting off of blocks and picks and things like that.
On the importance of getting pressure from up the middle: I think it's important because when pressure does come from the edge the quarterback needs to step up in the pocket and if there is no pocket then that helps us even more with the DBs out there covering and the defensive ends coming off the edge. I think it's pretty important to get pressure up the middle.
On Texas Tech's offense: You've got to give credit to Tech. They're a good offense. They went in at halftime, fixed their problems and came out and played football. They're a high-powered offense, and that's what you expect from them. There are some things we could have fixed on defense, here and there, but we'll get them fixed.
LB Roddrick Muckelroy
On how Texas played as a unit: I think we played pretty good as a unit. We came together this weekend, tried to put it all out on the field and just executed; executed the things we had to do.
On what UTEP brought to the table last year: Last year they brought 400-something yards. I think they rushed for like 150, so you know it is a pretty good team coming in. We've got to get ready for them. Like I said they had 400 yards on us last year and we had a pretty good defense last year so we've got to be ready.
On the play of Earl Thomas: Earl was all over the field making plays. He got an interception, his first this year. Earl, he's a great player, he was all over the field making plays and having fun.
On whether this was the best game he's played: When I talked to coach Muschamp he told me that that was the best game I've played and I was just out there having fun and trying to make plays.
On what it was that made it one of his best games: I was out there making plays. I had a couple of hits on the quarterback. I think I had one pass breakup. I was really just out there making plays, and when coach Muschamp came up to me, and that's what he told me, that's one of the best games I've ever played.
On whether it is easier to focus on the game plan: We are going to have all types of routes. Once we sit down and watch a little bit more film tonight, we'll see what type of combinations and routes they'll run and we're just going to get started tomorrow.
On surviving and getting the win: Like coach Brown said, it's all about survival. We've just got to prepare because you never know who's going to come to the game ready, so you've got to prepare hard all week and put your best on the field on Saturday.