Steve Kragthorpe post-game quotes

Post-game comments from Steve Kragthorpe following Louisville's 28-20 loss to Cincinnati Friday night at PJCS.

(Opening statement) "I want everybody to know that I'm proud to be the coach of this team and I'm proud of these guys. I'm proud of the way they fought tonight. Obviously, we play to win and I'm pissed about that because we didn't win the football game. I thought our guys showed a lot of heart and showed a lot of character and played their asses off tonight and that's what you ask them to do as a coach. We're not wining football games right now and that's on me. I take full responsibility for that. We've got to win games and I'm paid to win games. We're not winning games right now, which means I'm not winning games, so don't blame that on the players, blame it on me."

(On losing some close games lately) "We've just got to find a way to win the games. We've got to make a play when we get a chance to make a play. We had some critical penalties tonight that took us out of rhythm offensively and called back some big plays in the game. We've got to continue to fight and continue to battle."

(On the players commits about self-inflicted mistakes) "Penalties and turnovers. We make a big play and we fumble the ball. We got out of rhythm a couple of times on the offensive side. We snapped it early on one play. Yeah, I think you're right and the players are right. We can't make errors like that when we're playing a BIG EAST opponent. This is a good league and Coach Kelly's got a very good football team at Cincinnati. Our margin for error is very, very small, and when you make those errors, it makes it tougher to win a football. Not impossible, but it makes it very difficult."

(On the Cards' six second half penalties after none in the first half) "I'd need to watch the film to see if they were penalties or were not penalties. You can't make those errors at any point and time in a game, whether it's the first quarter, second quarter, third quarter or fourth quarter, it doesn't matter. You can't have big plays like that called back. We had a couple of plays on third down where we give it to Doug (Beaumont), give one to Brock (Bolen) and we convert the third downs. We hit the big one to CV (Chris Vaughn) down the middle of the field with 5 ½ left. On the previous series, we're moving it again. You know, we had the running play to Brock and we're deep inside the red area there and we have penalties. I can't explain if they were penalties or they weren't penalties because from my vantage point, it's awfully hard to see."

(On the reversal of Brock Bolen's first down reception in the fourth quarter by the replay official) "I think it was big. But we've got to get a first down (on the following play). Even if it's fourth and inches, no matter what, we've got to get a first down. We've got to get a surge and get the first down in that situation. I didn't see a replay on the board and the official on my side said the play wasn't on his side, so he didn't see it."

(On keeping the team's struggles inside the team and not listening to outside criticism) "I'll take all of the blame for what has happened over the course of the last year and a half. I'll take the blame for what happened tonight. The players just have to stay positive and keep grinding. They've got to keep battling. I take full responsibility for what's happened, so don't blame the players, blame me."

(On whether the Cards need to win each of their last two games to earn a bowl bid) "I think so at this point and time and we're capable of doing that. We're just a whisker away from winning some of these games, so we've got to find a way to win them. Obviously, our goal at this point is to win both of our remaining games and get to a 13th game."

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