Iowa State vs. UNI Quotebook

Here is a complete transcription with comments from Iowa State players and coaches following Saturday night's 17-10 victory over Northern Iowa to open the 2003 season.

Dan McCarney:

"We saw a tremendous effort by Mark Farley, his staff and players. It's no surprise to me that they came in here a very physical team and motivated team. I looked at them in pre-game warmup and they looked like a different team than two years ago. That's not an excuse."

"I'm proud we won the game. The one touchdown they had, they had a one-yard touchdown drive for the night. So we did some good things defensively."

"I thought Austin Flynn did a lot of good things for a first-time starter. The one interception that he threw was a deflected pass. He ran for a touchdown and threw for another. He should be a much better quarterback next week than he was tonight, just from learning and getting experience."

"We were very inconsistent overall on offense, but at times we were close and had chances to make big plays. Defensively, we got no takeaways or turnovers. It was a great job of UNI holding onto it and a poor job by us forcing turnovers. They just kept hanging in there and hanging in there. I'm proud of my kids to come back and win the game."

"You learn just from playing. There were lots of blitzes and we had a lot of looks. It's no surprise to us. It was some of the stuff we saw last year against Oklahoma with Seneca (Wallace) at quarterback. They brought it from all over the place. He made some plays at times against that look. But we have to do a much better job offensively. Seventeen points is just unacceptable, no matter how many freshmen were in the lineup. We have to make more plays and sustain more drives."

"It was OK at best. You take your best player out of there, you're not going to be as good. At times we were OK. Michael Wagner ran hard and I thought Stevie Hicks was a little tentative. He got his first playing time tonight. Overall, we were OK at best. We'll review the tape. I think we have a chance to still be a real fine football team, even if we didn't look that way on a lot of snaps."

"We don't know. Tyson's got a problem with asthma, so it's delaying them getting into the X-Ray. We haven't gotten a report, but my guess is that it's serious. He was in a lot of pain on the field. Whether he's out for the season, two games, surgery, no surgery it's too early to tell. I don't know. If it is serious, at least he does have a redshirt and would be able to come back the next year. It breaks your heart. My thoughts and prayers are with him."

"Part of that was protection problems. They brought a lot of stunts, people and looks. Their defensive speed was a lot better than two years ago. So scrambling was the only thing he could do at times. They outnumbered us by one and that was the only thing he could do. You did see that he has elusiveness and the ability to run with the football. He will be a much better player because he has that experience."

"Johnny Smith still has a knee and it's week to week. Hopefully he'll be back in the next couple weeks. He had that in two-a-days. We think Anthony Forrest is going to be academically ineligible. He's still working through some things and has been with us in camp. We found out in the last couple days he may come up short. We'll probably know for sure in the next couple days."

"I thought that throw was a beautiful play. It was a play action pass and about as good as it gets. I thought that throw and the throw that was drops are about as good as a quarterback will make. It should have been caught. He's real capable. You saw some accuracy with his throws tonight, and good leadership skills. He'll get better each week."

Stevie Hicks:

"I don't think I did too well. I have a lot of work I need to do and need to get better each week. I need to go out there and play better."

Nick Leaders:

"We came in at halftime and knew we couldn't let them score again. We have a young offense and didn't know how they were going to do. It's the defense's job to keep them without a point. We played pretty well, but still made a few mistakes. We still have a lot to do."

"Towards the end of the game when it was coming down to it, we knew we were going to have to get a turnover or do something big. But getting that fourth-down stop was big."

Michael Wagner:

"There were a lot of new faces out there. This was our first game and we had some jitters out there. Don't take anything away from UNI, they played a great game and are a great team. They came at us with everything they had."

"I tried to do what I could to help the team get a W. I was reading my keys and did what I could to get the running game going."

"We probably weren't gelling well together. This was our first time out there as an offense. Us being new, there were a lot of new faces out there. There are going to be communication problems at times and guys won't be on the same page, but now we have this first game behind us."

Austin Flynn:

"Our team offense needs to get a lot better, but you have to give a lot of credit to Northern Iowa. If we're down or up, we need to get the job done and I think our offense did that."

"This was my first game out there and I was pretty excited and nervous with a few butterflies. But I felt good out there and was confident. I thought I played OK. It was a learning experience for me. We'll definitely improve as an offense."

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