CN: How about starting with some of your overall observations from Saturday's loss to the Cowboys?
Montgomery: The most obvious observation from Saturday was that Oklahoma State is a pretty good team. They have found a way to recruit the athletes with the speed needed to be a contender in the Big 12 South. After the game Saturday we also see that we are a long way from where we need to be on the offensive side of the ball.
CN: After the slide that happened last season in the Big 12 Conference, what must have happened in the locker room in Stillwater and what will need to happen this week to get ISU back on track for Texas A&M?
Montgomery: I would assume there wasn't too much said in the locker room after the game. The people that didn't play Big 12 caliber football on Saturday knew that they didn't and knew that they let the football team down. The coaches most likely addressed the fact that the way the team played will not lead to too many victories in the Big 12 and that they had a lot of work to do. The biggest item on the agenda this week will be to boost the confidence of a team whose ego took a big blow in Stillwater. This will be done by showing the players the positive parts of the game on tape and making them they believe that they can improve on what went wrong.
CN: Did the game remind you of a lot of some the Cyclones experienced last season? Why or why not?
Montgomery: This game did remind me of a lot of the hard losses we suffered last year. We saw glimpses of greatness that could help us win very many games this year overshadowed by turnovers and the lack of consistent offensive line play. The lack of offensive productivity and turnovers led to the defense spending way too much time on the field.
CN: What was your read on the quarterback position, and Bret Meyer who lost three fumbles during the afternoon?
Montgomery: The quarterback plays as well as the offensive teammates around him. Seeing how there weren't too many extraordinary performances on the offensive side, the quarterbacks didn't have too many chances to be good. This was a wide awakening to the Big 12 for Bret. He got a good taste of how fast the Big 12 defenders are compared to the rest of the country.
CN: Did you notice anything in particular Oklahoma State did to frustrate Meyer, be it in the defensive front or secondary?
Montgomery: I think that Okie State's cornerbacks were skilled enough to play our receivers one-on-one which allowed the defensive coordinator to blitz more defenders then we could protect. As it turned out, the extra defender was the one that was in Bret's face all day.
CN: In your mind, should Austin Flynn have received more playing time?
Montgomery: Once again, Austin made plays when he had chances and also held on to the ball. I think Mac should maybe give the tag team quarterbacks one more try and then choose one. I definitely believe that Austin deserved more playing time on Saturday, but that was Mac's decision and there is nothing we can do about it now.
CN: Did you notice any improvements along the offensive line in run blocking and pass blocking? Please elaborate.
Montgomery: During the first half I noticed better run blocking and Stevie was running harder and getting three to four yards a run. I think the pass blocking actually wasn't horrible, but the guys who came free made big plays. It may have seemed like there was horrible pass blocking, but they were bringing an extra man on most of their blitzes.
CN: Evaluate the job John Skladany's defense did against the nation's top rusher Vernand Morency.
Montgomery: Our defense did a great job this week, especially considering the fact that they were on the field for a large majority of the game. The defense contained Morency for the first half, but a player like that is going to get his carries and yards. As the second half wore on, Morency showed us the kind of player that he is. Our defense is playing great football this year, but they would gain a boost from spending less time on the field. This can be achieved by the offense sustaining drives and ultimately running the ball.
CN: How about the special teams?
Montgomery: If we hit the field goal on the first drive we set the tone for the game. And it gives our guys a little more confidence from the beginning. We definitely could stand to have Tony Yelk play this week. He will instill some confidence in that part of the game. This game was not a physical mismatch, it was a mismatch in confidence. These Cyclones think they may be able to play well but they have to know that they can play well in this conference.