ASU Discusses Disappointing Loss at Kinnick

ASU Head Coach Dirk Koetter is known as an offensive mastermind, but his Sun Devils had no answer for the Hawkeyes' defense Saturday night. Read what Koetter and his players had to say after a tough loss to an unbeaten Iowa team.

HEAD COACH DIRK KOETTER:

What did you think of Iowa's defense?

DK: They've got an excellent defense. We knew that coming in. We knew they were as good of a defense as we've seen in quite some time. They're very well coached. They can get to the quarterback with a four-man rush, which very few people can. And they're a bend-but-don't-break zone team that keeps everybody in front of them. They did a great job of that today. To beat a team like that, you've got to be patient and able to check the ball down. We lost our patience too many times, and then they were able to get to us too many times in the four-man rush.

How much did the loss of Daryl Lightfoot hurt you guys tonight?

DK: Well, it hurts us to not have our biggest playmaker in the game. I don't think there's a whole lot of teams that can take that guy out. That certainly played a part in it. But when you get shut down like we did on offense tonight, it goes way beyond just one guy.

Were you impressed by Iowa tonight?

DK: Very much so. I've been impressed with Iowa every since we started watching them. They've got it going here right now. They don't beat themselves and they've got an excellent defense and great special teams. You'll always be there if you can play like that. I thought our defense and special teams did their part. Offensively, we just didn't answer the bell.

QB ANDREW WALTER:

It seemed like you never got comfortable back there. Was Iowa just sending different formations at you?

AW: They really didn't do anything coverage wise we didn't think they would do. They just did a good job of covering. They're not complicated. They're just extremely good at what they do.

What happened on the interception? Did you try to force it in there?

AW: Yeah. I was trying to get it into the end zone. I was just trying to make a play. it didn't work out.

Is this the most uncomfortable you felt in a game?

AW: No. Again, it just a matter of taking what they gave us and not trying to force the football. It wasn't a question of me not feeling comfortable, it's just the way the game worked out.

Were you surprised you guys didn't run the ball more?

AW: When we get down, we've got to go to our bread and butter. The passing game is a bread and butter. Again, that's the way the game went. Sometimes it doesn't work out.

What do you think today said about your football team?

AW: We have to show resolve. That's what I say. I don't know what all you guys will say tomorrow. But we've all got to show resolve next week. That's period.

LB JAMAR WILLIAMS:

How physical was it out there?

JW: It was physical out there. You know, it's Big Ten football. They tried to run it all over us, thinking we were soft. They gave us great run looks though. I think overall our defense did pretty good stopping their running game.

Did their quarterback surprise you at all, Chandler?

JW: Chandler is a great quarterback. He got a lot of great passes. I didn't think that he was going to be all that big. He's 6-7. He's solid out there.

What was the 4-3 defense designed to do?

JW: They were using a lot of two-back, two-tight end (formations). We just decided to use the 4-3 just like Kansas State and when we play other teams that we think are going to run a lot on us. I think we did pretty good stopping their run game.

How disappointing was this game?

JW: After a loss, you're always disappointed. We came in and we wanted to win. We know exactly what we've got to work on. We have to go back to the drawing board and get ready for Oregon State.

What were the coaches disappointed in?

JW: The coaches aren't really putting blame on anybody like that. They just give credit where credit is due. The defense did great. The offense did great. They just didn't get the numbers on the board.

FB MIKE KARNEY:

What happened to the offense tonight?

MK: We couldn't establish a running game like we wanted to. And they played us well. They're coverages played well and we couldn't get deep. That's the way it goes.

FS JASON SHIVERS:

What happened?

JS: I'm kind of at a lost for words about how our team played tonight.

How disappointing was it that you guys didn't score after your interception?

JS: I really don't look at it as a disappointment that the offense didn't get it done. I don't really like to harp on them or nothing like that because it's a team game. We can just do our part as a D and hope that they do their part.

Can you talk a little bit about how their offense played?

JS: I mean, I have to give Iowa credit. They were a good team. They ran the plays that we thought they were going to run, but they just executed. That's all I can say for their offense. Fred Russell is a good running back who is patient and picks his holes.

Were you kind of surprised that their quarterback came out of the pocket?

JS: No. I'm not really surprised by anything that they did. They came out and showed us the looks that we seen in the game plan. They just executed a little bit better than we did today.

S BRETT HUDSON:

Did they do anything different than you thought they would?

BH: They threw a lot more than we thought they were going to. I thought they were just going to run it down our throats. When the defense stepped up, they caught the corners one-on-one. And they made plays. That was the difference. They made plays.

In the first quarter, the ball bounces and you're not able to get a clean handle on it. What happened? We're you just trying to scoop it up?

BH: Actually, I had it. The guy went through my legs and punched the ball out. It was just a play that I didn't make.

Was there something that changed the momentum of the game? You guys had it going early?

BH: I can't think of a particular play. But you could definitely feel the momentum switch. You can't say that the fans affected the game, but you could feel the momentum switch.

You guys had a chance to be up big, early. Did that concern you when you let the opportunity pass?

BH: Yeah. Definitely. I can't speak for the offense, but we had the opportunities in the red zone. It's just football. You've got to take advantage of your opportunities. That's not to knock the offense. It's a team game.


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