Football

Postgame Quotes From Ohio State at Northwestern

Oct. 6, 2013

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No. 3/4 Ohio State 40 (6-0, 2-0 B1G) at No. 15/16 Northwestern 30 (4-1, 0-1 B1G)
Ryan Field - Evanston, Ill.
Oct. 5, 2013
Attendance: 47,130

Ohio State Coach Head Coach Urban Meyer
Opening statement...
"What a football game against a guy that I have a great respect for. I'm very close with him. I just remember growing up and there's a perception of Northwestern and I think there still is sometimes. I know when they [won] the bowl game last year, just studying this group because I knew we were going to play them, that all in all they've got a great coach. They don't make mistakes, but they've got very, very good players, borderline great players in some positions and a scheme that is hard to defend."

About the flow of the game...
"The [Ohio State] head coach and the offense really put the [Ohio State] defense in some bad positions. You know we went for a fake punt; I felt like we needed to swing up the momentum at the end of the first half to try and get down there. I thought we were having trouble stopping them. That was an error though. An error by me. Then the offense with the turnovers just in short field, you can't do that. Usually you don't win those games, but in the second half the sign of a good team is where the offense picked up the slack when the defense was giving up some yards. So obviously a lot of things to fix, but a win against a top 20 team on the road in a rough environment. I'm proud of our guys."

On the first half...
"I thought in the first half there were short drives and bad play by the offense. We had one turnover, a fake punt, we were just flat-out giving them the ball or we'd hold them to a field goal. But you know what, that's who we are. We're going to run a fake punt again. I tell our players that all the time. We're an aggressive team. We do what we got to do to go win games and if that happens we go out and stop them, and they actually did so good team win."

On Carlos Hyde and Braxton Miller...
"[OSU RB] Jordan Hall has got a little knee issue that we're dealing with right now and I didn't know how bad. I didn't think we'd not have him this weekend. And so [Hyde's] the horse right now and I think he's a great player. And it shows you how much I trust the kid to be able to do that. It was kind of him and Braxton Miller just trying to run that clock out and I thought Braxton played fairly well too."

On being behind most of the game...
"Anytime you go on a 12-round, 15 -round fight with someone and you come out the other end it just builds toughness and we're a tough team. We toughed out a win."

Ohio State RB Carlos Hyde
On the team's ability to win the game in the second half...
"In the locker room, I told the offense that that's not us. We score points, not kick field goals. Everybody got their mind right in that second half. Coach told me that we were going to start riding me. I get excited when they tell me that."

On carrying the ball 26 times...
"I'm amazed that I was able to carry the ball that many times. That was the first time I've gotten that many carries. I'm excited, and I'm thankful. I'm looking forward to our next opponent."

On wanting the game on his shoulders...
"I wanted it bad. I like when games come down to the fourth quarter, and Coach will put the ball in my hands. He started off in the beginning of the game putting the ball in my hands. I was just trying to catch a rhythm, and I caught a rhythm. The offensive line was doing a great job with their run blocking and they just made it easy for me."


Northwestern Head Coach Pat Fitzgerald
Opening statement...
"All the goals to my right are still ahead of us. I think we showed everyone in this conference room and the country these young men can play and we just have to coach them better. There are no moral victories; our guys will come back next week. It is about the bottom and middle of our pyramid of what we believe in. It is about trust and character. It is about coming back and responding to things when they get tough. It is about sticking together and believing in yourself and each other. Obviously a disappointed locker room, but [we have] great leadership and we'll bounce back and have a challenge a week from now."

On improving the team's performance...
"We're going to coach our guys to execute better. To make the plays when they present themselves; turn the ball over, score touchdowns, not field goals in the red zone. We have to tackle better and when we are right there to make the plays we have to be aggressive and do a terrific job as a coaching staff to give our guys the best opportunity."

On the energy on campus this weekend...
"Our students are having a blast. They have a darn good football team to root for. We are going to need them; we have a bunch of big games coming up. As we continue to work our tails off we are going to need our students every step of the way. They have been phenomenal the past I-don't-know-how-many years. The reason why [ESPN] College GameDay was here is because of them. We have a football team on the rise and this is just a momentary lapse and I think the country really got a chance to see what we are all about."

On what he learned about the team tonight...
"There is no doubt that we will fight and we will battle. I think that it was an ebb-and-flow game. I thought that we had momentum for a while and lost it, battled, got it back. We are driving down the field to go win the game and I made a tough call, I thought they spotted the ball where [Kain Colter] fumbled the ball, that is why I challenged the play. And obviously 4,328 replays from all the cameras in there, nobody else saw it. I tried to make a play for our guys. I thought our guys battled their tails off and gave us everything to have the opportunity to win. I think the score was a little bit misleading for our defense. They got a touchdown scored on them by our offense and get a blocked punt. Our defense did a good job tonight from one of the most prolific offenses in the country. We have to be better against the rush, I know that. We won the turnover battle. "

Northwestern Quarterback Kain Colter
On NU passing the ball more in the second half...
"I wouldn't say we abandoned the run. I'd say they tried to play man a little bit more and loaded up the box. In that situation, we've got to have guys get open and chuck the ball around. I guess it just kind of depended on how they were playing. I guess we were still able to run the ball a little more in the second half, but we saw an opening in the pass and we tried to take it."

On his fourth-and-1 quarterback sneak...
"Obviously the center-quarterback exchange wasn't perfect. I guess everything was hectic. I tried to pick it up and get as many yards as I could. I thought I got at least a yard or whatever it was. I didn't see the replay and can't really tell you that."

On the disappointment of the loss...
"You lose some, you win some. I know every guy that stepped on the field put everything he had on the field, left nothing out there. So, we're going to walk out of here feeling good. Of course you're going to look back and wish you had different plays, but that's football and all you can control is your effort and attitude. Put in a lot of effort and had a good attitude and it was close. It was a heavyweight fight. You win some you lose some.

On going back on the road next week...
"We love playing on the road. We love having that mentality, us against the world. So, we're excited. We need to get on a roll here in Big Ten play, so looking forward to it."

Northwestern LB Damien Proby
On RB Carlos Hyde's performance and on missing defensive lineman Sean McEvilly...
"Sean is a dynamic athlete as we all are very well aware of. We had guys that stepped up to the plate. In terms of slowing Carlos down, he's a very explosive running back with a very explosive and experienced line in front of him. We did our best today. We're at the level where we need to improve on it, but we're not going to be doubting ourselves after this one."

On Carlos Hyde picking up a lot of yards after contact...
"He's a big running back, all of 235, 240, whatever he's listed as. We know that its something we have to improve on going forward into Big Ten play, running backs will be of that stature."

On the attitude in the locker room...
"Our players went out there with the right attitude. We didn't play this game for the media. We played this game for ourselves and we wanted to prove something to ourselves. That's something we still need to do, but we definitely took a step in the right direction that we wanted to. So this wasn't a media game. It was a game that we wanted to get for our program, for us and collectively for the guys we have in our rooms, in our dorms that we see every day."

On defending Braxton Miller and forcing turnovers...
"We just capitalized on the opportunities that he presented for us. We saw on film that he can hold the ball a little loosely on film. It's something that our coaches pointed out. We had two weeks to prepare for him. But he's a dynamic athlete. We know that. Our entire job and motto is to get the ball inside and in front at all times. So we tried to contain him as much as possible and not let him get a big gap in space so he can make those touchdown plays."


 

 

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