Post Illinois: Rick Stanzi Q&A

The Iowa Hawkeyes lost to Illinois 27-24 Saturday on a 46-yard field goal with under :30 seconds to play. It was a crushing blow to an Iowa team that had rallied back from a 15-point fourth-quarter deficit to tie the game, which included a two-point conversion. All of this on a day where Iowa's first four trips to the redzone resulted in three field goals and one missed attempt.

Q: Talk about fighting back in this game.

Rick Stanzi: The guys did a great job responding, the entire offense. We went out there and made plays. We never got down and that is a good sign for the offense. At the same time, if we can go our there in the first half and finish some of those drives, we would have been better off. It's a good thing to see us come back from a deficit like that, we haven't done that in a while. To be able to tie it, we gave it our all. But it's still a loss.

Q: Was that the best pass rush you have seen thus far?

Stanzi: Yeah, they came hard. They have a lot of players coming. They didn't stop rushing, they didn't give up on plays. They made it tough for everyone. They did a good job at the goal line.

Q: Could you feel the pressure coming on the play where you fumbled?

Stanzi: Yes and no. I kind of felt some pressure, but I was waiting for something to open up. They blind sided me on that one. That was my mistake on the play action. That is something to learn from.

Q: Talk about Reisner's catch on the two point conversion.

Stanzi: It was a great play by him. He did a great job of getting open and giving me a chance to put the ball out there where only he could get it. He was able to get good position where he was open.

Q: Kirk said this was a learning day for you. What did you learn?

Stanzi: A learning day to finish drives, and it goes back to early in the year where we were having trouble finishing. We have to do that, and it will helps us in the long run. An offense is out there to put points on the board. Field goals are nice, but you want to finish the drive. We have to work on that.

Q: Were you taking more chances today?

Stanzi: That last one, the ball got away from me. I knew the corner would be sitting there, and I let the ball get too far outside and let him have a chance to make a play and not letting Brandon make that play. Brandon sat down well, and I let it get away. The first one, I need to put that ball out there better. It was a good call. I need to finish.

Q: Are you sick of losing close games?

Stanzi: Of course we are sick of losing close games. You don't like to lose close games, especially in the big ten.

Q: What did you learn after falling behind 15 and coming back?

Stanzi: We have a great group around us, a great group of guys on offense and we have a good mindset. We don't let ourselves get down. We still rallied. We don't like moral victories. We had our chances early on to finish in the redzone and we need to put 7 on the board.


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