Dan McCarney Teleconference Highlights

Iowa State coach Dan McCarney spoke with the conference media Monday morning via teleconference after his Cyclones climbed four spots in the AP poll after sending Nebraska out of the rankings. are some of the highlights.

Dan McCarney's opening comments:

"We're very excited with our victory on Saturday. We're proud to be 5-1 right now and 2-0 in the Big 12. It's a good time for an open week. We came out of the Nebraska game a little banged up. We lost Luke Vander Sanden, who had broken a bone in one leg earlier this season and had surgery, then turned right around and broke his fibula in the other leg on Saturday. He's going to have surgery tomorrow. Then we have some other guys a little banged up. But I think the rest of the team should be ready for the next game with Texas Tech."

"We beat a very fine Nebraska team. It was an excellent team win and team effort on a national stage. We've got some unbelievable challenges ahead over the next seven games. Five of those are teams were in bowl games and two are in the top three in the country right now. But we're proud of where we are right now and need to continue to improve."

On fear of losing momentum during bye week:

"We sure don't want that. That's something we've talked about a lot as a staff. We've had some open weeks in past seasons. We're playing real good football for the most part in all phases right now. That's always a concern. I have to look at it as a head coach that we've got a 13-game regular season and you're body and mind can only take so many collisions and hits through a long season."

"The timing is right. We have played six games already. It's still September and we've already played that many, with seven more to go. I think the open week is a real good time. Just seeing the players after the game, there's no question it's a good time for an off week."

on plans for football team this week:

"We're going to give them some time off. We'll see them today and go through the Nebraska game tape, go through our awards and evaluations. But they're not going to practice today or tomorrow. Then we'll get back and get some practice work in here Wednesday, Thursday and Friday."

on what he did after big victory on Saturday:

"Like always, I don't plan anything. About the time you do is when you usually end up with a major disappointment on game day. I just gradually made my way back home and there was a lot of people there. ESPN was there to do an interview. It was just a lot of people. It was nice to have friends and family over there, as well as a lot of people that I'd never even met or seen before. I think they heard it was an open party."

more on ISU's defensive performance against Nebraska:

"We had great respect for their rush offense. They were seventh in the country at 255 yards a game coming in. It was one of the better defensive efforts we've had since we've been here. It was led by a freshman Nick Leaders, our true freshman nose guard who had eight tackles, four tackles for loss and a couple sacks. He was just unbelievable. That's a young man that's 18 years old and has only played six games of college football."

"We had a lot of guys play well. Our entire defense stayed on their feet. We tackled well and didn't give them a lot of yards after contact. The five turnovers were just huge in the outcome of that game."

on utilizing bye week in recruiting:

"We've done a lot of preliminary work for the recruiting part of it. I had seven guys hit the road yesterday after we got through with our meetings. Then the coordinators and myself will run the show here on campus and evaluate our game. We'll get started on Texas Tech, one of the top teams in the Big 12 and one of the great quarterbacks in the country."

"We'll still spend a lot of time with the players, but that's not going to be all practice time. Sunday is our normal day off and I'm giving them Monday and Tuesday away from football other than meetings."

on big weekend that was in-state:

"We live in our own little football world and you don't get to hear and see some of those things, but it sounds like there was a lot of positive recognition for both football programs, Iowa State and Iowa. It's nice. I'm an Iowa native and am proud of being from this state. Kirk Ferentz has an excellent team and it didn't surprise me that they went out and beat Penn State. It's nice to see that some more people around the country recognize when we play good football in the state of Iowa."

"We have both put ourselves in a position so far this season to have good, solid years. I hope that it will continue. As I've told Kirk many times and called him yesterday that I hope the Hawkeyes will have a lot of success, too, along with Iowa State."

on Big 12 pitting ISU against Oklahoma, Texas back to back:

"I didn't call anybody and send any ‘Thank You' notes. It worked through Bruce Van De Velde and he pretty much just told me that that's the way the scheduling is going to be set up this year and that's the way it goes. There isn't anything we can do about it. We've known about it for a long time, starting with the Florida State game. We've tried to prepare that way, whether it's our practices, meetings or game planning. It's an unbelievably challenging schedule this year, but so far we're holding up OK."

on how players have, will handle victory over Huskers:

"We haven't enjoyed a lot of success for a long time around here, but have won 21 of our last 30 games. We're getting better and have a good program, but have a long ways to go. When we get through with the team meeting this afternoon, they'll sure understand we have a long ways to go and made a lot of mistakes. We turned the ball over three times, got a punt blocked and had some major breakdowns. So there are a lot of things to work on."

"I am just very impressed with these kids' level of maturity for a team that has 40 of the top 48 players underclassmen. It's not a senior-dominated team. But so far they've played with a lot of confidence and maturity. We need to make sure they understand that's what got us here."

on how other programs could take note of administration's patience with him in past:

"Every situation can be very different. The history, tradition, lack of it, the facilities, town and proximity to recruits and lots of numbers, high schools and players—there are a lot of things involved with it. In this situation, I was allowed time to continue to build what we had started. Behind the scenes, the athletic director and president saw the right things being done many times over. They knew that if they hung together and let us keep doing our thing here in the program, that we were going to have a chance to succeed."

"It's a good example out there for other administrators, because there are a lot of coaches in the country that may not get all of the time that I've gotten. I hate to see that. I really do. If you've got the right people and right staff in place, patience sometimes is a great virtue."


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