Dan McCarney Big 12 Teleconference

ISU head coach Dan McCarney spoke with media across the nation on Monday mornings Big 12 teleconference.

A very tough loss for the Cyclones here Saturday, very disappointing. We knew Baylor was coming in with a darn good football team; they've been playing that way throughout the early part of the season. Guy Morriss as I said last week has done a tremendous job at Baylor and his team is playing with a lot of confidence and they earned the win and they deserved to win.


We've got to take better care of the football; we fumbled on the one yard line going in, we fumbled on the 19 yard line; very uncharacteristic or our program through the years. If people beat you they beat you, but don't beat yourself and Baylor made the plays we didn't and they deserved to win the football game.


A very big challenge again here we go in the Big 12 anther outstanding football team. Gary Pinkel's done an outstanding job at Missouri. Their offense is just dynamic, sixth in the country in rush offense, seventh in total. They're putting up over 500 yards offensively scoring almost 38 points a game. So Brad Smith is a young man that I don't know if all my years in the Big 12 I've respected a player or a young man more coaching against a player in our league than Brad Smith. He is just really, really special.


It's going to be a major challenge for us, a lot of season left, a lot to play for. Very, very important game for us this week. We're hoping to correct our mistakes and come back and play better football this week.


On the recruiting of Jason Harris


It came down to Iowa State and North Carolina; those were his final two choices. Chris Ash my secondary coach did a real good job of building a relationship with Jason and his family. Either way he was going a long ways from home. I think Jason and his family felt very good about our program and we were going to take good care of him and we could be a second family for him and a home away from home. He made the decision to come with us and we're sure glad he did.


On if he was going to play offense all along…


We talked to him all along to be a running back and we needed some more help back there and we didn't know if he'd be ready or not. We sure didn't know we'd have injuries at running back. I was real proud of Jason on Saturday, he did some good things when he was in the game and he'll continue to get more playing time as the season goes on.


On whether he'll carry more on Saturday…


I think he'll get more playing time. He deserves it, he earned it and when we did give him the opportunity Saturday as you saw he did some very positive things. So we look to see Jason playing more and more as the season goes on.


On how Baylor has changed since last year…


I think Guy's done a real good job of recruiting and developing players in the time that he's been there. They're team speed is better I think this year. I was just very, very impressed with Shawn Bell, he didn't play in our game down there last year and the plays he made, the way he lead that team and Baylor's playing good defense. There's no doubt about it they're playing good defense and they're an improved football team and we got away with a last second/last series win down in Waco. We have great respect for their program and obviously they're an improved football team this season.


There is no fluke to them being 4-1 they're a good football team.


On Missouri's tight ends…


They're outstanding I've read Gary talk about the freshman [Chase] Coffman and boy he looks every bit of that. He doesn't look like anything that I've seen as a freshman before. He's outstanding, his talent, he's a huge target, great hands, catches the easy one, catches the hard one. He just looks to be very physical beyond his age of 18 years old, he's special.


They're doing a great job obviously; this is an unbelievable challenge for our defense because they're hitting on all cylinders offensively. They're putting up an unbelievable amount of points and yards and first downs with Brad Smith back there running it, very rarely is there a turnover.


I don't know if I've been around a tougher quarterback or seen a tougher one through the yeas than Brad Smith. I've said that every year I coach against him, but when you stop and think about all the hits and tackles he's taken in his career and he just doesn't seem to miss a beat, miss a play. He is just one of the real dynamic players in college football.


On whether or not Bret Meyer is comparable to Brad Smith…


He's learning that; he's a different type player I think. He's not as big and strong right now as Brad Smith is but he's just a sophomore he's getting better and it sure is nice to know going practice and going into game day that we've got a sophomore quarterback like Bret Meyer that will continue to improve as his career moves on.


On if any of the players were questionable on the reviews…


No, it was definitely a fumble ad we've got to do a much better job protecting the football. You don't want to turn it over no matter where you are on the field, but of all places the one yard line going in. You knock that in and get the extra point and we're up 20-10, but we didn't do that. Baylor knocked the ball out and they deserved to win the football game. We've got six turnovers in the redzone in five football games and that's just unacceptable and inexcusable and that's not been our style, that's not been our program, that's not who we've been. Normally we just take great care of the football and that's something we're addressing offensively and we've to get corrected real fast.


On if he's happy with what they've done on pass rushing…


You're never satisfied. I coached the defensive line for 16 years so we're always looking for more pressure, more sacks, and people don't sit back there in the pocket and hold the ball all day long anymore. There's so much timing involved and they get rid of it and on a lot of snaps you don't have much time to pass rush. You've got to get there quick and fast and be effective, real quick on your pass rush move because quarterbacks aren't going to hold the ball very long. It's not all sacks, it's disrupts, it's pressure, it's trying to get him out of there. It's tough to do that on game day when you've got a guy like Brad Smith who doesn't hold the ball very long and his accuracy as a passer has really, really improved.

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