ASU-Cal Post-Game Quotes

BERKELEY, Calif. - Head Coach Dennis Erickson and his players discuss the team's 24-14 loss to Cal.

Dennis Erickson

on the difficulty of coming back from a 17-0 hole on the road

"It really was (hard to come back). We talked about this before the game; we talked about this last night. They (Cal) have been very opportunistic as a football team. They've come out and got turnovers, and got ahead of teams…so we fall behind 17-0 and that obviously puts you in a hole. I thought our guys in the second half, particularly defensively, really fought and played their rear ends off. We came back and made some plays. We got a chance, offensively we got the football three, four times (towards) the end of the game…all we had to do is to get within seven (points) to give ourselves a chance to win. We miss a field goal, we get a sack…"

"Right now offensively we're just not good enough to have to depend on throwing the ball all the time. I thought we ran the ball, at times, successfully. And then you're down 17-0…I was proud at how hard we played. That's easy to say after you get beat. But you guys saw it. You saw how hard we played on defense…we dug ourselves a hole and tried to claw out of it, but it was pretty deep."

on sticking to the run more like he (Erickson) said, but getting just two, three yards a carry which makes it hard with ending up with many third and long situations

"That's exactly right. That's what it's all about with us. We've got to get to third and manageable situations with this offensive team right now, with the inexperience we have. At times we got to that, for example the touchdown to Kyle (Williams), was on 3rd and 5…but when you're in 3rd and 10, 3rd and 11 you got some problems. That's what happened to us."

"There were times, as I looked at the running game, where we were blocked it pretty well and the back didn't (follow the block) as he should of. I'll look at all that (film) tomorrow. We got to continue to do this. We got to be able to commit to the running game and see what we can do in the next seven games."

on the difficulty of running the ball against Cal

"I thought Cal tackled really well. There were a few times where we ran Keegan on the corner out there and they came up and made a good play. You got to give them credit too; they're a good defensive football team. We are where we are, we are all disappointed and we just have to battle through it."

on playing a lot of young guys and that fact contributing to the 17-0 hole

"On my god, it's like being in a nursery school…we turned the ball over the last thing you want to do is (commit) turnovers and they score…we played a good team on the road and we had a chance at the end."

on why Cal's running back Shave Vereen seemed to be uncovered so much in the first half

"Anytime that happens that's gap control, somebody missing a gap. We corrected that at halftime and the defense made good adjustments. If we continue to play like that on defense we'll win games. We just have to keep on doing it."

Rudy Carpenter

on the offense continually being at a disadvantage working from 3rd and long situations today

"I have to watch the film, but I should take full responsibility for this loss. I turned the ball over twice. I don't know what the numbers are, but I didn't complete a lot of passes. We missed a lot opportunities. At times we played very well, but we just couldn't take advantage of it. Like I said, being the quarterback and the first to make the decisions I got to take responsibility for not performing well offensively."

"We're in third and extra long…it's tough. They can just sit back and play zone and we have to throw underneath them and there's not a lot of holes. We're just not making big plays either." on what happened on his second interception of the game

"Actually I thought he (Kyle Williams) was wide open. I didn't see the corner come back into it. I thought it was a touchdown right when I threw it…but that wasn't even a big deal. It was as good as a punt, if not better. But obviously the first (interception) is tough. They scored points (off the interception) and our defense did a great job."

on what happened on his first interception of the game

"He (the corner) just jumped the route and made a good play. That's one of our plays that we like to go to and they knew that. I tried to throw it low to put it on (Chris McGaha), but obviously (the corner) made a good play."

given all the skill players the team has back from last season, why is the team struggling so much on offense?

"It's so hard to answer. I have to watch the film. I felt after the Georgia game I watched it and I'm like ‘I don't know what to do.' Obviously we tried to run it more this week…we're just not playing the way we should and that obviously starts with me."

Troy Nolan

on giving up two touchdowns while defending a short field following a turnover

"It does make it harder especially when you go on the road. You can't turn over the ball on the road. We fell behind and they got the momentum." on starting to play well after being down 17-0

"We did play a heck of a game in the second half. It took us a while, but we got used to them, and we shut them down in the second half."

on where Cal ranks offensively compared to other teams ASU played this year

"I think they rank up there with some of the teams we played this season. But they had a lot of trickery in their offense and it was (hard) to get it down in the first half. We stopped them in the second half and had a lot of three and outs."

on what he takes away from this game

"I know we fought hard on both sides of the ball. Defense - we played a heck of a game. Offense - we played a pretty good game. (We) had opportunities on offense we didn't capitalize on. But we played a hard, very physical game."

on people assuming that ASU will now lose at their next game at USC

"Obviously we are going to be the underdogs at USC. But knowing my team we won't let down. We are going to go and play a hard fought game. We have our intention of winning every game in the Pac-10. We're ready for it. We just have to play as one."

Lawrence Guy

on the play of the defense

"We were good in the second half. Had a little trouble in the first half. But after the first half we played better."

on his play in the second half where he was getting more penetration and registering tackles for loss

"I started understanding the linemen, figuring out where they were going and where I had to be…the movement of the line and how they were playing…it's gonna be a learning process for me. I'm trying to get better faster…everybody (referring to the young players) is learning right now."

on switching the defensive tackle from defensive end, after expressing his desire to play at end when he got to ASU

"I had to get mind set back to (defensive) tackle, but I'm straight."

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