Game Quotes: Colorado 27, Oklahoma 24

Athletics Communications
By Athletics Communications
University of Oklahoma
SEPTEMBER 29, 2007
Opening Comments:
“I knew they had a great defense, they really played well and we knew that coming in (Colorado) was one of the best defenses we faced last year. They just really outplayed us. We got up 24-7 and then they outplayed us in a big time way the rest of the game. I give my compliments to them, they hung in there and made the plays. They executed the last quarter and a half a lot better than we did. They outplayed us and out-coached us in the second half. They fought their way to a heck of a win.”

On the Upset:
“It’s never a shock when you’re the one who is competing. We understood we needed to play well to win and we didn’t. We made some really poor penalties and we didn’t play very smart, we turned the ball over there late. You just can’t have those things happen. The really poor, foolish things we did just killed us. We’re not a very smart team right now.”

On Turnovers:
“It definitely doesn’t help when you do one play and turn it over, stop them, and then do one play and turn it over again. You’re out there the whole time. We’re not very smart at how we conduct ourselves. We made some poor choices and it is disappointing. We emphasize and talk about it all the time but guys need to listen.”

On Colorado’s Running Game:
“They executed and played better than we did. We had a lot of missed tackles and they blocked better than we defended. They made the holes and their running backs found them and ran through some things and made people miss them and made their plays.”

On QB Cody Hawkins:
“I thought he did a great job. What you appreciate about him is that we had some interceptions and some big plays on him and he hung in there and made his plays in the second half to help his team win.”

On SS Daniel Dykes Interception (6:37 4th quarter):
“I thought that the turning point was the one down the middle when (Juaquin Iglesias) was wide open and it just goes off his fingers. With that, we would’ve had a big play and it would’ve put us in scoring position again but then (Colorado) gets it. That, to me, was when all the momentum switched and we never got it back.”

On Mistakes:
“We need to do more offensively and we can’t have the dumb penalties we had on defense and we can’t turn the football over. Anytime you turn the football over like this, away from home, you have a hard time winning.”

On Oklahoma’s Secondary:
“At times they scrambled and found some guys. I thought we also defended a few balls. We got our hands on some and we intercepted some but in the end (Cody Hawkins) made some plays in the second half and we obviously could have covered better in some situations.”

On His Thoughts at Halftime:
“You just have to keep playing. I don’t know if there was a change in intensity or not and there can’t be. We got a good lead at 24-7 and knew there was a lot of football left to play. We didn’t play very well from that point on and we need to do better than that.”

On Next Week vs. Texas:
“We’ve already talked about Texas. We talked about some things we didn’t do very well today and what we need to get done for next week so that we can have a chance for the rest of the year.”
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On what went wrong:
“We weren’t really clicking like we have been. We need to keep doing what we’ve been doing and come out ready like we need to. We have to come out every game like our record is 0-0. All credit goes to Colorado for this game, though. They came out and played a great game.”

On WR Malcolm Kelly having zero receptions:
“Malcolm is a great player, he makes great plays; we need to get him the ball so he can make plays for us. We didn’t do that today.”

On Colorado's Ryan Walters' interception:
“Me and Sam (Bradford) weren’t really on the same page. The safety ran off and I was open in the middle of the field. He tried to lead me on the pass but I settled down. We have to work on that in practice and make it better.”

On bouncing back from the loss:
“We have to bounce back from the loss like good teams do, great teams do. We think we’re a great team. “

On the slow start:
“I think it carried over from last week, we were flat coming out against Tulsa. We have to come out firing and keep it going.”
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On WR Malcolm Kelly having zero receptions:
“Colorado did a good job of covering him up. Anytime we had a chance to throw to him one on one we take it but we didn’t get that chance today.”

On Colorado's Ryan Walters' interception:
“The interception was my fault I have to put the ball in front of (WR) Juaquin (Iglesias).”

On where the team goes from here:
“We have to show up every week, play hard every week; this is the Big 12 so you have to come ready to play. We have a big game against Texas next week so hopefully we can bounce back. I think I missed some throws today. We got to come through and make big plays though.”

On readjusting goals as a team:
“The Big 12 South, we can still come out and win that. If we want to achieve the goals we set at the beginning of season we have to come out and play hard and play to the best of our ability every week.”
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On the slow start:
“The offense just wasn’t clicking like how we usually come out there and play.”

On the possibility of the team looking ahead:
“We approach every week the same way, we have a regular routine, we’re going to have to come out and execute. We have Texas next week but it doesn’t mean anything that it is Texas, we’ll just keep doing our routine and play well next week.”
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On CU's third and fourth down conversions in the first half:
“I think they could have got whatever they wanted. We can only watch the film and understand what’s going on and understand what happened to us and make sure it doesn’t happen again.”

On the defense being worn out:
“We were on the field a lot but we have to be tougher than that. We were away from home and naturally things are going to happen that aren’t going to be in our favor. We have to be tougher than that.”
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On still being able to achieve goals:
“We achieved every goal that we have. No one snuck up on us, we beat ourselves today.”

On Colorado's passing game:
“They didn’t do anything we hadn’t seen, we have to come out and do better. We came out and looking at the back field, not playing our keys, not buying into what coach wanted us to do.”

On the Texas game next week:
“We have to come in and have a great week of preparation for Texas and try to get a win.”
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On what went wrong today:
“We allowed them to run on us. They opened up their running game on us, not that it wore us down. We knew what they were going to throw at us, we just didn’t stop it like we should have.”

On the loss:
“As hard as it is, we have to put it behind us, its only one game. We still have the whole season in front of us. We have to take it one game at a time."
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On still being able to achieve goals:
“There is a lot of the season left. I don’t think the BCS goal is gone.”

On being on the field for much of the second half:
“There is no such thing as too many plays, that’s what you condition for, in the off-season and during the season for so that’s no excuse.”

On CU's fourth down conversions:
“It’s something that the defense can’t allow. We have to put our foot down on that and to get off the field.”

On Colorado's running game:
“They were able to run it, they ran the ball well. We gave them a lot of opportunities and opened up the passing game a little bit. They did a good job up front; we just weren’t able to stop them. We have to get that corrected and we’re going to put our foot down.”

On the loss:
“It’s a tough loss. You know we don’t expect to lose any games so this is something where we have to rebound Monday and come out ready to play. A loss is a loss.”

On Oklahoma's defense:
“If you get the opportunity to make a big play we have to make it. That’s something where on third and long and fourth down as a defense we have to make the play.”
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Opening statements:
“We turned the ball over a couple of times there and put our defense at a disadvantage. We have to figure out this turnover thing and we were fortunate that our defense got some turnovers. Our guys were where they needed to be. All week I told them we were going to win this game. I’ve been doing this for 25 years and you know when your team is ready. You know when they are poised. I was really pleased when it looked like things were getting away from us and our guys just kept coming. Oklahoma is very good on defense and coach (Mark) Helfrich and (Jeff) Grimes did a good job of chipping away in the running game. It’s like taking out concrete—you just have to keep pounding away. We made some plays in the passing game and Chase McBride made some good plays in the return game and, yes, he is a former walk-on now. It’s good to get him on scholarship.”

On Getting Too Excited Over The Win:
Not necessarily. I have just been doing this a long time. You have to stay the course. We have to be able to get back in here tomorrow and look at what we did wrong and what we did right and get better. You have to be mature enough as a staff, and as a team, to get back in here and say, ‘We did these things well, and these things not so well.’ We just need to keep pushing forward.”

On What This Win Means To The Program:
I think last year we let the Georgia game slip away from us and that could have helped us in some other situations last year. But, clearly, it’s good for your fans, your recruits and your alums to see you be able to play like that. It gives everybody confidence and I think that is big because it’s our expectation as a program to be at a national championship caliber and that means that we have to be able to compete with those programs. You cannot just keep coming close—you have to be able to seal the deal. And, I think that’s a little proof in the pudding for everybody.”

On Being Down 24-7:
“Again, if you look at it we had a couple of tipped balls that led to 14 points. We felt like we had some things going offensively. You’re not going to run up and down the field on these guys—they’re too good. But, we felt like we could get some things on them. We felt like we could get a little rhythm going. A game always turns on one or two plays and we were fortunate that we got a few turnovers and that helped us. Oklahoma took advantage of the turnovers early and we took advantage of them late. “

On Halftime Adjustments:
On defense, we didn’t make a lot of changes. There were a few plays when we would miss a line ourselves and we had the right adjustment in, but our guys were not necessarily getting to the right spot. We tweaked a couple of things, but it was not really a wholesale deal.”

On Oklahoma:
“Oklahoma is a very good football team and like I said before, they don’t have any weaknesses. But, we know what we’re capable of doing and if we do what we’re supposed to do, we can play with anybody. The games that we’ve had so far, the loss had nothing to do with the other team. Obviously, getting them at home and an early morning start was good for our football team.

On Cody Hawkins’ Play:
I got a big squeeze out of him. There were some things he missed, but there were some things he made. He is my son, but I love all these guys the same. I don’t look out there saying, ‘look at the plays my kid is making.’ I’m looking at, if he’s making the right read or getting rid of the ball and throwing it to the right guy. He’s been in a lot of big games and he’s been around this thing for a long time. I think he was happy, but he wasn’t surprised.”

On Hugh Charles:
We really believe that he has the capability of becoming an All-Big 12 type of running back. However, we’re also trying to get him to be a Walter Payton-type guy and bring it. He obviously has speed and power and he made some plays for us.”

On Patrick Williams And Wide Receiver Corps:
We were really trying to get him (Patrick Williams) to believe in himself and we thought maybe we need to back off on him a little bit and not force the action and he responded by helping Cody (Hawkins) out on a couple plays. If you’re going to be great you have to have people come in and step up and fill roles and be happy to do it. As long as they can all focus in that direction, we’ve got a chance to be pretty good."
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General comments:
“Getting the win and doing what we came here to do was what really felt good.  We came in prepared and just went out and did what we needed to do. We knew coming in, it was going to be a crazy game, we new the crowd was going to be a factor and we had to make some changes. We changed up the snap count and just did a couple other things differently.  It was a dogfight all day and in the end we came out with a win.”

On his thoughts before the final field goal:
“I hope he makes it, I hope he makes it, I hope he makes it. We have a lot of faith in Kevin, he’s a great kicker, and unfortunately he missed that first one. But he came right over to the sidelines and I told him ‘We’re going to need you to kick the game winner. I wasn’t sure it was going to happen, but it sure did. And he came through when we needed him. I’m still a little excited, and I need to breathe.”

On beating Oklahoma:
“It means a lot. A lot of my friends in Boise got after them last year, and I was a little upset that I didn’t get a piece of Oklahoma. Jordon [Dizon] told me to give him some of that Boise State mojo, and I said to heck with that, lets get some Colorado mojo. I think that’s kind of what we’re starting to get going around here. I know Stoops is a great coach and he has his guys prepared each week. You don’t win games like that when you overlook opponents. They were well prepared coming in and they had a good game plan. Luckily, things went our way when we really needed them to. We knew we were going to have a chance to when. And when the ball went through the goal posts at the very end I was ecstatic.”

On his thoughts after OU's special teams' turnover:
“We knew we were going to get the ball back in a great situation. We knew we had to punch it in and our offense was fired up and ready to go. Again, our special teams played awesome today and they really contributed to the win.”

On believing the team could win:
“Every single guy on the team did. There wasn’t anybody inside the locker room who thought we were going to lose that game. If you just watch film, they are a great football team. But if you look at how they’re actually playing, we can def match up, and def have a chance to win. Everybody’s kind of been making fun of us for the ‘could-of, would-of, should-of’ but finally we did go out and we ‘should-of and we didda [did it]’.”

On getting a signature win:
“The era is definently not over, because we have a long season and a lot of games. A lot of people have been talking about getting a signature win, and I don’t know if this is it yet, it’s a huge win for the program. Just for the people’s opinion on the potential we have on this football team. I’m really excited for what we’ve done and where we’re going. Obviously we’d like to be 5-0 right now, but that isn’t the case. We have to prepare for the Bears and right on down the line to keep coming out the rest of the season and keep working hard.”

On the celebration after the game:
“My helmet got jacked, and Stephone Robinson took one in the eye. There were people all over the place; I’ve been to some crazy concerts and that was worse than all of them. I thought it was very exciting to see the students get in to it like they were. The guys on our team, we respect Oklahoma very much, but we definently weren’t scared.”
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On the team's defensive performance:
“Stopping their running game was the focus of our game plan.  All game the defensive lineand the secondary played great, they played great all day.  Our critics really criticize our secondary, but what now? What now?  They proved that they are a strong secondary and that the players back there can play with anyone in the country.”

On creating second half turnovers:
“We looked over at the sidelines and all of our coaches were telling us to get the ball back, then when we did get the ball back we ran off the field telling them we got the ball back.  I have to take my hat off to our defense, my teammates really played great today.”

On the team's improvement:
“Trust me, we won the game but we have a lot of mistakes we have to fix before we go down to Baylor.  We can’t let this win go to our head, we have to come out and keep preparing like we’ve been preparing and continue to work hard all week.”

On what this win means to the team:
“It’s confidence, all confidence.  When you have the trust that our coaches and players have with each other it enables us to do a lot of special things.  We’ve been sitting on the edge and this game was the push we needed to go in the direction we want to go in.”

On the size of Oklahoma's offensive line:
“No, their size wasn’t that big of a factor for us. (Head Strength Coach Jeff Pitman) Pit does a good job keeping us ready when it comes time for games. I’ve seen bigger offensive lines. Texas is probably the best that I’ve seen so I’m not intimidated by size. I just go out and try to make as many plays as I can.”
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On his late game punt return:
“I just knew if we got in field goal range, Kevin (Eberhart) would make it. Fortunately, I was able to break a big one and the offense did the rest. It was a middle return and I just tried to wait for a hole to open up. While I was returning it, Byron (Ellis) pancaked his defender and I saw a hole and I was able to get some good yards. ”

On the kick catch interference call:
“I don’t really like doing that fair-catch stuff. It’s not really my style. But, I knew that I needed to and I always put the team first and we were able to get a penalty out of it.”
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On the game-winning kick:
“I feel great. It is an amazing win for our team. I’ve been up here a long time and this is the greatest win we’ve had while I’ve been here, in my opinion. I also think it’s been too long since we’ve had a win like this.”

On the missed field goal earlier in the game:
“You know, I thought it was good, but that’s not what the officials called. Luckily, I got a second chance and was able to redeem myself. I need to quit missing my early opportunities, but I really want to give it up to Chase and the offense—they really stepped it up in the second half and did their thing.”

On replacing Mason Crosby:
“I never really felt that I had a monkey on my back. Mason was a great player here, the best I’ve played with. I just try to come out and have fun and help the team in any way I can.”



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