MAC Championship Post-Game Quotes

Herd Insider spoke with Toledo coach Tom Amstutz, Marshall coach Bob Pruett, and Marshall players Byron Leftwich and Denero Marriott after the MAC Championship win over Toledo on December 7, 2002. For GoHerd.com Club members only!

Toledo coach Tom Amstutz:
"Offensively, I was pleased with us other than the first quarter. We kept things moving, we mixed the run and pass up. Defensively I was a little bit disappointed with the long passes. It was just a great football game. It was a lot of fun. I really looked at that game as two champions playing each other. You could tell that. I know my players are champions, and so are Marshall's."
On Leftwich's game-winning throw to Watts: "It was a great pass. On time, perfect pass, great spiral. I wish I could can it up and take it home. It was a great play, no doubt. And, don't underestimate their receivers. They have very talented receivers."
On Leftwich: "There is a young man who is still playing for his team. He is injured obviously, but he is still out there playing. Some guys would fold it up and wait to collect their money, but Byron did that for his team, and I really respect him."

Marshall coach Bob Pruett:
"What a game. Both teams played their hearts out. It's a shame that someone loses when two teams play as hard as they did today. ESPN ought to love Marshall University, because of the games we've played here and the finishes they are. I thought that offensively, when you look at Byron's 30-of-39, that was just part of it. The way he checked the blitz, pointing things out. Here's a guy on one and a half legs, and they can't blitz him. Every time they did blitz him, they got burned. If you've got a quarterback who is not mobile, you're going to come after him. But if you come after him, somebody's band is going to play. And most of the time, it's ours. He did an excellent job."
"This conference is an outstanding conference. How far it has come along in the six years we've been in it. It is hard to continue to be at the top. The true measure of a champion is his ability to repeat. This is a great day for the Herd. All of our guys played their hearts out. This is a complete team win."

Marshall quarterback Byron Leftwich:
"I've got even more respect for them (Toledo) after the way they came out and played. They came out and they were making plays, making plays. When you get two teams that want to win the championship that bad, you get an effort out of all your players like that. I've got all the respect for them and their coaching staff."
"We couldn't let anybody come up to the 'Green Mile' and beat us. For the game to end the way it did, I'm just happy to be a part of it."
On the game-winning TD to Darius Watts: "They were trying to double Watts with the linebacker, and you ain't going to run with him with a linebacker. He did all the work. He outran everybody. I just put the ball in the air."

Marshall receiver Denero Marriott:
"I didn't want to be a senior and come away from my last game at Marshall Stadium without being a MAC Champion.


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