Texas Tech game quotes
On needing a fast start: Our offense tonight was hitting on all cylinders. We obviously felt like we needed to come in and keep the football, try to have some balance between the run and the pass and the guys did a great job with that tonight.
On RB Jamaal Charles: They took Jamaal in right at halftime, right after he had 165 yards and I don't know what for really. They had him x-rayed and they let him come back out and play some. We felt like probably because he was stiff that when he fumbled the ball when he came back in we should probably keep him out and let Vondrell (McGee) handle the rest of it.
On OL Tony Hills: Tony obviously went out and Chris Hall moved out and Buck Burnette played the rest of the game there. We felt like (offensive line coach) Mac McWhorter did an amazing job of replacing a center and a starting tackle, the two seniors that he had over the last two ball games and still move the ball like we did.
On QB Colt McCoy: I felt that Colt played as well as I have ever seen him. He was tough and really good at running the ball. I am proud of his leadership, and we felt like in the Texas Tech game you have got to out score them because they are going to score their points. If you get a hot quarterback like Graham Harrell was tonight and like he was against us in the first half last year, it's really hard to stop because he didn't miss, so give them credit for what they did and give our kids credit for winning the game.
On their identity as a running team: I obviously think that you win more football games when you run it. And I think we are still in a position where we have maybe lost one or two games when we have out-rushed the other team, but the rest of the time we have won. It beats the other team down and it helps you in the fourth quarter. The fourth quarter against Nebraska kind of flipped it for us and shows the importance of the stats that I showed you guys on Monday with the fourth quarter runs. They are so important and I don't know what they were tonight, but it just took over the game and it gives you better pass protection. Colt (McCoy) is doing such a good job with his feet while we are throwing the ball, but we do have some identity now on offense and I've enjoyed the last three weeks.
On focusing on starting fast: We actually told them to quit worrying about it, and maybe they were trying to hard and they were too uptight some. Maybe we talked about it too much, we wanted them to relax tonight and have some fun, enjoy the last game for the seniors at home and enjoy the Texas Tech game because it is always such a great game for us. They knew a lot of the guys on the other team, so it looked like they just came out and had more fun.
On being aggressive in the red-zone: It is part of the game plan every year. We try to be more aggressive and we wanted to go for fourth downs past the 50. You feel like you don't want field goals, you want touchdowns. We faked the field goal because we felt like we had to be aggressive and we knew they were going to get their points. We didn't feel like a field goal would have changed anything and we also felt like if we kicked a field goal and had it blocked and they ran it back for a touchdown. So we felt like the clock would stop anyway after the fourth down so we might as well throw it and get a shot to score and if not, we leave the ball down at the 10 or 15-yard line.
On the young offensive line: (Buck Burnette and Michael Huey) played eight or 10 plays last week and did a good job but we had 92 plays tonight and 40 minutes of time of possession, so we were really concerned with those guys getting tired and at the same time we had so much momentum offensively. We're probably going to have to play all those guys more in two weeks.
On the team's identity: The attitude is better, the confidence is better and the swagger is back. The last quarter against Nebraska, the last quarter at Oklahoma State and this game we felt like we're playing as a good football team again and I told them that. We still have a lot we think we can fix so we're still not where we need to be, but we look like we've got a clue now. And we also have recovered more onside kicks than anybody in the history of college football, so I'm not worried about those anymore.
On RB Jamaal Charles: I thought he took over the game with the offensive line to start with. He was making seven, eight, 10 yards every time he touched the ball, and I'm really, really proud of him.
On the resiliency of this team: I credit our coaches and our kids who are really good and have a lot of character. They keep working and allow our coaches to coach them hard to get better and not get down on themselves and quit, and that's what tonight was about. Tonight was about coming out and playing well. We didn't play as well in last year's senior game. I think we've won 9-of-10 (senior games) and last year's game was really disappointing. We wanted to play hard tonight and we wanted to have fun tonight.
OFFENSIVE COORDINATOR GREG DAVIS
On establishing the run early: We felt like because of the way they played we could have some success in running the ball we'd run some time (off the clock), and I think we were successful doing that.
On the offensive performance: The line did a great job. We lost Tony Hills early and we had to take Chris Hall and make him left tackle and put Buck Burnette in (at center). And then Jamaal (Charles) was playing unbelievable and then something happened with his heel, so Vondrell (McGee) came in and did a heck of a job. Colt (McCoy) stepped up and just played tremendously. It was a total team effort.
On the offensive line: I think a big part of (their success) is that the offensive line has now had some snaps together. Even though we're still piecing it all together, they've had more snaps and they've seen more different things now. Colt (McCoy) got us in some good situations in the run game so that helps, but I think the biggest thing is that they've had more snaps together.
On going with the run over the pass in the first half: It was about the overall team game plan of what we were thinking, and it was also the structure of the way (Texas Tech) lined up. We felt like we could get some front-side draws in. We were able to do that more in the first half than in the second half and then the zone play really came up big again in various formations.
On Colt McCoy's running abilities: Anytime you have a quarterback that can make plays on schedule, which Colt has done a great job of, and can extend plays and do things positively in the run game, it's a big bonus because that guy is not accounted for in the pass game when nobody is dropping.
On converting on fourth down: We let the clock run down and we took a timeout and we just felt like if we didn't make it, we would leave (Texas Tech) with a long field. We thought they would come after us, which they did, and the (offensive) line did a great job picking it up and Colt (McCoy) made a great throw.
CO-DEFENSIVE COORDINATOR DUANE AKINA
On the defensive performance: I thought we were playing solid. We got off the field on the fourth down and that was a real positive high. It was just a disappointment how these last few drives finished, and we just need to really address that and see why.
On being physical: I felt like we came out and were physical and played well. We tried to be aggressive and blitz quite a bit and then we shifted gears and tried to slow it down and go hang out on some zones and make (Texas Tech) check it down. But I felt like we were very physical and we struck early.
On if he was surprised when Texas Tech converted on 4th-and-15: No I think the way our offense was playing (Coach Mike Leach) had to take an aggressive approach. We were anticipating them to do that, and I think he had to turn it into a touchdown game for them.
QB COLT MCCOY
On the run game: I thought Jamaal (Charles) ran great in the beginning, and the whole game he was finding the holes. Vondrell (McGee) came in when Jamaal was down and kept us in it. You've got to give credit to the offensive line though. We wanted to come out early and run the ball and they did a great job. It kind of wore (Texas Tech's defense) down and we were able to stay on the field. And I thought we did well with our game plan.
On the offensive performance: We were able to run the ball really effectively and I think that tremendously helped our offense. It was a great team effort. We knew coming into the ballgame we were going to have to score a lot of points. We still did some things that hurt us, but for the most part, I felt like Coach (Greg) Davis called a great game and we executed.
On running 92 plays: That's a lot, and for me and Jamaal (Charles) and those guys it's not that bad, but up front, the offensive line was having to switch in and out and get some guys in there. And some young guys really stepped up and played, especially when Tony (Hills) went down, guys stepped in there and played hard. The offensive line is unbelievable and Coach (Mac) McWhorter has them ready every week, and they played really well today.
On the second half: In the second half, we just said we wanted to come out and score. We went on a long drive, I'm not sure how many minutes it was, and once we did that, I felt like I pretty much knew what (Texas Tech) was doing defensively and we could make things work. We were running the ball and passing the ball, and it was all working together, so I didn't feel like there was a turning point in the game. But I felt like overall, we were able to move the ball every time we had it, and that's a pretty good feeling. And you know you need to do that against a team like Texas Tech.
On Texas Tech: You can't really ever think a game is in your hands against those guys. They're really competitive, they throw the ball around and you never know what's going to happen.
RB JAMAAL CHARLES
On the offense feeding off each other: The offense was doing a great job today. The offense was moving the ball up the field, we were scoring and we were having fun. Coach (Mack) Brown told us to go out there and have fun. He knew (Texas Tech) was going to put up a lot of points, so he just wanted us to show what we can do, too.
On the bounces finally going his way: Yes, sir. I'm just happy with what our team did today. The back-up running backs came in and played good. Chris (Ogbonnaya) and Vondrell (McGee) did an amazing job. Our offensive line and the back-up offensive line did a good job. Today (things went my way) kind of. I got the fumbles back and kept grinding off of that.
WR QUAN COSBY
On Colt McCoy's second TD run: That was huge. He's been making plays all year long with his feet and he is very deceptive. He's such a great passer that you forget the big runs he's had, and that was just another one in the book.
On the sky kick in the second quarter: It was a situation where we scored and they were moving the ball pretty well at that time as well. To get that and then score again was huge for our team and huge for our momentum, especially with being at home.
On the team peaking: We're just going out there and trying to execute. We've done some great things each game all year, but it's just a matter of doing it consistently. We were just a little more consistent today. We still have a ways to go but tonight was definitely a step forward.
DT FRANK OKAM
On the defense giving up 43 points: Texas Tech's system is a great system. If you don't play well against the pass, you are probably going to get scored on a lot. They have a lot of great playmakers, and [WR Michael] Crabtree is a heck of a player and Graham Harrell is doing a great job getting the ball to his playmakers. But this was our fifth win in a row and that's very important to us and we have to keep the momentum going.
On if there is still a lot of work to be done on defense: The main objective is at the end of the game is to have more points than the other team and that is our main goal. Obviously you want to do things better, but Texas Tech is a team that has a system and they do a good job with their system, especially tonight. We'll face a more run-heavy offense against Texas A&M and hopefully we'll be ready for that.
OT ADAM ULATOSKI
On the running the ball so often: That's what lineman live for is to run the ball all game, and running the ball is a lot more fun than passing every play. I think we knew we were going to run the ball and our play-action worked well and everything gelled.
On the patchwork offensive line: In practice, we rotate in with the first group and we pray that people don't go down but we prepare for it. Buck [Burnette] has been getting snaps and he stepped up big time tonight and he did a good job. Chris Hall played tackle tonight and it was great.
On the 92 plays on offense: It was tiring, but it was fun also. We wanted to go back out there and it was exciting every time.
S MARCUS GRIFFIN
On the swagger of the team: Our main goal is to win each and every week and to focus on that week. We came away with a big win tonight and now we have a week off to get ready for Texas A&M.
On looking forward to playing Texas A&M: I'm just looking forward on trying to get the 10th win of the season. It was a little bit disappointing sending our seniors off like we did last year, but this year we sent our seniors off in a good way with a big win. Hopefully we can get another big win and our 10th win.
RB CHRIS OGBONNAYA
DE BRIAN ORAKPO
On the offense being able to keep Texas Tech off the field: Keeping them off the field and keeping that clock rolling was beneficial for us. We got a little cold at the end for some reason. I don't know what it was. Our offense did a great job just moving the ball and getting first downs keeping the clock rolling so we could get the win.
On Colt McCoy's spin move to get into the end zone: I saw that and it was funny because Vondrell (McGee) kind of pushed him to the end zone, but it was great play by him.
On if the team is thinking BCS: Right now we're thinking A&M. A&M is a rivalry for us and they beat us last year in a clutch situation. It was 12-7 and it could have gone either way, but they made more plays in the end. We have been looking forward to this game for a long time to get back at these guys.
On if the team is peaking: I sense we are peaking offensively, and defensively we just have to learn to get off the field. That is our main thing. We make great plays, but then for some reason they get a first down off huge yardage. We just have to keep trying to grow as a defense and I believe if we keep playing on both cylinders we will be a great team to contend against.
DT FRANK OKAM
On the team coming together: I have really been impressed with how much we have come together since the two setbacks. I think to go on five straight, it a great thing and we're using that momentum to keep it rolling. Just making plays when they need to be made is a credit to our secondary guys, our linebacker guys, and our d-line guys just making plays when they need to do it. Our offense has been showing off these past few weeks.
CB BRANDON FOSTER
On if he looks at the stats: As long as we win, it doesn't matter. If they put up a million yards and we win it doesn't matter. It's not about yards, it's about points.
On the emotions in the locker room: We had Tony Hills go down and that was just so sad to see that, but we got the win for him and our seniors so it was great. Last year, our seniors didn't get to go out with a win so it was good to change that.
On making tackles today: We had been having that problem for the past couple of weeks, so it was good to change that. We still missed a few in some situational times that we shouldn't have, but overall we tackled well.
WR NATE JONES
On Colt McCoy: I think he did a great job. He ran the ball well again, he made some guys miss and he also looks like he ran over a guy when I watched the replay. He just hung in there and kept fighting. That is what this offense is capable of doing, just being explosive like we were today.
On how he rates the offense: I think we did a tremendous job. We were hitting on all cylinders in the first half. We just kept pounding the ball with Jamaal in the first half and when you have back like that running the ball hard like he was and if he breaks and gets one-on-one with a safety or a corner, I think he can beat them and keep doing what he's doing.
On the upcoming Texas A&M game: First of all we have to get focused and get ready to look at film starting tomorrow. We just have to learn from our mistakes from last year and just try to make sure we don't do them again. We have to be prepared to go down to a hostile environment and get a win.
On what Kasey Studdard told the team before the game: He just told us that last year on his senior day it was disappointing and he told all the underclassman to not let the seniors go out like he did. That is one thing that the underclassman did for us. Jamaal came out and did a tremendous job for us and so did Colt. On the defensive side, they held Tech to less points than us and that's the thing with Tech, you have to outscore them and that's what we did.
LT CHRIS HALL
On the energy it takes to run 92 plays: On the field, there's a lot of energy. Colt was really encouraging us, really pressing us on, because for a big guy, it gets a little tiring. The energy we had today, and the enthusiasm of the crowd really fueled everybody. When you get in the fourth quarter, the tired stuff just goes out the window, because we have to close out the game.
On the Texas offensive coaching staff: Coach Davis is in my opinion as fine as they come for offensive coordinators. He did a great job, as well as Coach Brown, Coach McWhorter, Coach Rucker, Coach Kennedy, Coach Chambers, all the coaches did a great job tonight.
On the identity of the offensive line: These types of high-scoring, grind-it-out games are a real gut-check for the offensive line. Just going into it, you know you've got to put it on your shoulders. You have to get up this week. I think tonight, there was a real gelling. Adam (Ulatoski)'s doing a great job leading us out there. Tonight we played together, It was good.
On finishing long drives: There's a factor of fatigue, but once you get down close to that red-zone, everybody starts saying, 'Guys, we've got to finish, we've got to put it in, let's go, let's step it up.' The crowd starts cheering, and you just get that surge, that energy.
DT DEREK LOKEY
On finishing his last home game: Frank (Okam) and I were standing there, and we sang ("The Eyes of Texas"). I know I got a little emotional during the song, and had a few tears running down. Cleve (Bryant) reminded us if we wanted to take a lap we could, so I went got the flag from the cheerleaders, grabbed Frank and we just took a stroll around the stadium one last time just to show everybody the appreciation of the time we've had here at Texas. This is such a beautiful place, we've been treated so well here and we wouldn't trade our experience here for anything. To go out there in front of these wonderful fans in Austin, Texas one last time was huge for us and we really enjoyed it.
On the identity of the team: If I had to sum it up in one word, I'd say resilient. Tonight we were able to get up on them and stay up on them, but I don't think until the very end there it was a sealed deal. They were able to keep scoring, and our offense was able to score more. We made turnovers when we had to. We haven't gone out and dominated people this year, and we haven't played our best game yet this year. We've been able to win nine games, through heart and determination. I couldn't be prouder of this team.
On his familiarity with Texas Tech QB Graham Harrell: Graham Harrell and I played each other three times in high school, so we have a previous relationship. We did some friendly talking out there, it adds a little bit to the game and it's fun as long as it's not excessive.
C BUCK BURNETTE
On the play of the young offensive players: We're really excited. There's a bunch of young guys that have really stepped up and have been able to make an impact in some of the games. We're really excited about that. Our chemistry as an offensive line and as an offense has really come a long way. We're excited about playing Texas A&M and the bowl game and wherever else (the season) takes us.
On former Texas offensive lineman Kasey Studdard's pregame speech: He just came in there and talked about how emotional it was for his class to lose their last game here at home, and how he still thinks about that in the pros. He just reminded us that you don't want that bad taste in your mouth going out.
On the 17-play third quarter scoring drive: You get going on one of those drives and you don't have a choice. There's a breaking point, where you can either finish or you can let go and punt. We got to a point where we had to finish and we scored. Our time of possession was just as important as our points, so that was really key being able to control the ball.
HEAD COACH MIKE LEACH
QB GRAHAM HARRELL