Kirk Ferentz: Obviously we were hoping to get the victory today, we weren't up to the task. I'd like to give Wisconsin credit, they've been playing well all season long. They certainly did that again today. They did the things necessary to win. They played another solid game, they're rolling into a real nice season. Congratulate them on their efforts. Certainly we competed harder today, that was a pleasant thing to see. We were hoping to see that. I think we improved today, but certainly not to beat a team that's playing as well as Wisconsin. That was kind of the deal. It's a tough one. We had our chances, again, looking for positives. Our guys came back from some tough situations, we fell behind right away and battled back. At least we had the proper responses there. The bottom line is that we didn't make the plays we have to make to win. They came up with a couple big plays that hurt us and when you do that, you open the door for a tough situation.
Q: The most wounding play was the TD before the half.
Ferentz: It really was. If you're going to single out a couple things that happened during the game, that was huge, obviously. To get to that point, we let their QB out on a 3rd and 8. That was a real big play. We knew that their QB was a guy who could run and he showed that today. He's a good athlete. We let him out of contain a couple too many times and then we didn't tackle him well. To me, I thought that was a big thing there. They got the conversion there, then had the opportunity to throw it down there and get the big play. The other big point in the game certainly was the long drive in the 3rd quarter. You've got a choice there, take the risk, we were at least 20 minutes out at that spot, you're playing for field position. Not only did they move the ball out and change field position, they came out with a TD out of it. You've got to give him a lot of credit to go on the road and operate the offense the way he did. You've got to give him an awful lot of credit, he did a nice job today.
Q: On the TD, Marcus was the one on coverage, was he supposed to me?
Ferentz: I hope he was. He was the only guy there. It's just a jump ball situation, if you will, or a deep ball. Their guy played it better than us. We had a couple of these today which was tough, tough on that. It ended up being a big big factor, certainly.
Q: Can you put your finger on what is wrong with the offense right now?
Ferentz: If I could I guess we'd probably have won today. We did some good things today, we didn't play with the consistency you need to play with. Obviously we started out real slow. They did a good job of taking some things away from us. They made it very difficult. The play that chandler made, the completion to chandler, the run there, that got us going. I thought after that we played pretty well. The third quarter, we had six snaps, that's tough. They did a nice job of holding on to the football. They also got points out of that. The 4th quarter is a whole different deal. In the 2nd quarter, we were playing real well on offense. That' how offense goes. You're not going to be always clicking on every series. At halftime we were in great shape, we really were. The game really got decided, I think, in the 3rd quarter.
Q: (A question on the lack of offense in the first quarter)
Ferentz: It was hard, we had taken the momentum, we had control, but even that being said, I told our guys at halftime. We've got 30 minutes of football left. We gave up two big plays. We didn't tackle as well as we need to. Basically, we had to make them earn anything they got in the second half, then make sure that we played clean on our side of the football. You know, it was anybody's game. It did swing the momentum. No doubt about it.
Q: Those two at the end of the 4th quarter, it almost epitomizes a little of what's gone on in the season. Dropped passes, simple as that.
Ferentz: Yeah, it's fair to say we just haven't played consistently, in any area. You talk about the offense, but we haven't played consistently, I think, in any area where we can say, "Hey, we can count on this during this period." When that happens, you end up being a 6-5 team, which is where we're sitting right now, that's the bottom line.
Q: (A question on losing another home game)
Ferentz: It doesn't help. We don't like losing anywhere. We certainly hate to lose in Kinnick. That's something we've worked hard to establish, a good tradition here on this field. Certainly on senior day. The only good news there is that our guys have a couple games left to play. You always want to have a nice memory, I think. It's always been a very special day It was a special day today and I think our guys gave great effort that way. That's tough to look back on a tough loss.
Q: It was peculiar that on your touchdowns, the player was wide open. Nobody around. Then Wisconsin's scores, it was tough.
Ferentz: They blew a coverage down there on Tony's, for whatever reason, I don't' know what happened. Something threw them out of kilter. I thought we were in trouble on that one, then they left him uncovered, Drew did a good job of getting him the ball out there. They got disoriented on a couple, it was good to see that for us, certainly. It was good that we found the guys that are open.
Q: You were trying to call timeout.
Ferentz: I thought we were in a bad shape right there. That's something I was getting from up above, but what we didn't realize is that part of the reason we were in bad shape is that they were in bad shape. Drew got us into the right play and he took care of the rest. A little like that Michigan State thing in whatever year that was. Didn't cover the guy to the left.
Q: ON that fumble, you seemed a little agitated at the officials.
Ferentz: I was a little confused on a rule there, that's all. It was about where coaches were supposed to be. I thought they were supposed to be outside of the field of play. Depends who you play. That's usually standard operation procedure. By my count, when the second one happened, that would have been two. I think. Am I counting that correctly? I think so. One. Two. I was an English guy, but you know… I can go to three. I was a line coach, I can count to three. You've got to count to three to be a lineman. That's all you need to do, 0, 1, 2, 3. You can block anything. As long as you know who 0 is.
Q: You did a good job on PJ Hill.
Ferentz: It looked a little more like us in some ways, out there. I felt we played tough up front. They're a big physical group and they try to wear on you. Our guys, they rose to the challenge there. We did some things a lot better today. We're not beyond hope by any stretch. What we need to do right now is look hard at this tape, try and think some things up and we need to improve again this week so we can go up there and see if we can't our seventh win. That's really all we need to worry about at this given point.
Q: As competitive as Drew is, it's a hard way for such a popular player to go out.
Ferentz: It is. But this is a team game. It's a team game, always has been. Right now, as a team, we're not as good as we would like to be. We're all accountable for that. We all have a role. We've got a lot of good guys on our team, a lot of good seniors. You'd like them all to go out with a great taste about their last home game and the last season. It doesn't always work out that way, at least the last home game, but what we need to worry about is what we can do the next two ball games, to make sure everybody can look back and say, "Hey, we finished the right way." I think we made some steps in that direction today. We weren't quite equal to the task. We made some steps. Positive steps.