Full Transcript: Brady Hoke Postgame

Coach Hoke on Woolfolk's status ... on Denard's performance ... on the Defensive performance including the D-line and Blake Countess ... and much more.



Question: All week you downplayed the San Diego State game what made this one a little bit different?

Brady Hoke: "It was still Michigan playing San Diego State and so that doesn't chant. Obviously, there is some great kids on that football team, great individuals, they work hard, play hard and that part of it is just being a human being. There is a love that you have for those guys that you've coached and you've been around."

Question: How did your defensive line play?

Brady Hoke: "I thought the run game from that standpoint…you'll always be able to look at it and make some other decisions on it, but I thought they were disruptive. The backers were able to flow pretty decently. There was some pressure on the quarterback, some of the play action, I think the transition from run to pass was pretty decent especially Mike (Martin) and Ryan (Van Bergen) did a nice job. Craig Roh, you could see was out there."

Question: Now that nonconference, where do you think this team is at versus where you want it to be and what you will work on going into the Big Ten?

Brady Hoke: "We can't turn the ball over four times. I can tell you that and that's disappointing. We ended up a minus one. Defensively, we caused three turnovers and then we turned it over four times and you can't win anything. You can't win your Pop Warner league if you turn the ball over. We're very fortunate to get out to a decent lead in the football game and then I thought our defense kept us in the game because we tried to give it away. That's a problem."

Question: In terms of building that lead, the decision to go for it on fourth down after the timeout, what played into that?

Brady Hoke: "I thought our defense was playing pretty good and I think it gives your kids some confidence that they know that you have confidence in them."

Question: After some of the slow starts that you've had defensively, for the defense to come out and set the tone they did with the three and out, kind of allowed your offense to get rolling. How big was that just as a whole for the team?

Brady Hoke: "It was a big deal with how we covered the kicked. That was a big deal – kickoff coverage. That's been a little bit of a thorn in our side and then Greg (Mattison) talked about with the defense before we left the hotel about that first possession, that first series and how we want to play as a defense. We talked about the Michigan defense and wanting to be a Michigan defense."

Question: Can you assess Denard's (Robinson) day separately with his legs and his arm?

Brady Hoke: "I think he ran the ball pretty dang on darn well. He makes some things up as he goes, which I wish I could do that, sometimes I do though (laughter). He really did a great job of running the football. I thought he did a good job of managing the offense. It will be interesting when I talk with Al (Borges) tomorrow some of the check plays because of the different looks that Rocky (Long) is going to give you, which is a lot. That's not an easy defense to…Andy Dalton had plenty of problems with it a year ago. It is not an easy defense to try and figure things out, but he did a good job there in the run game, I think throwing the ball. I don't know if one sailed on him a little bit, but I'm not sure either about the route at this point if it was ran to the specifics of what it needs to be run. I think the one he tried to find a hole in there, just probably made a bad decision."

Question: Do you think you were able to rattle Lindley?

Brady Hoke: "No I have the upmost respect for Ryan and how he studies the game and how he plays the game. I think it is like all quarterbacks, you want to try and get as much pressure as you can. It is that fine line. They throw that fade down here in the third quarterback, beginning of the fourth quarter and that is going to be a touchdown if they hold on to it. It is a fine line of how much zone you want to play to how much you want to try and get after them."

Question: Troy Woolfolk's status and talk about how Blake Countess when he went in.

Brady Hoke: "Troy tweaked the ankle that he tweaked earlier in the season and so I'm sure that is day to day. If I know Troy, he'll come out tomorrow and do everything that we'll do. I thought Blake, he's a young guy. He's a talented young guy. He has done a good job of…he has great pride in performance. He gets himself ready to play."

Question: On the one turnover with Vincent Smith, he was in there on the next series, you immediately got him the first carry, I think there was a penalty. How important was it for you to show confidence in those kids that even after a mistake, we're still going to count on you?

Brady Hoke: "Fred (Jackson) has a lot of confidence in him obviously. I've got a lot of confidence in him. I want to see that play. I know he was fighting for an extra yard or two or whatever and I don't know where he got loose with the ball or a hand punched it through, I don't know, but I'm glad Vincent Smith is on Michigan's football team."

Question: The turnovers put you in bad field position several times and the defense coming out and only giving up seven points.

Brady Hoke: "That's what those guys are on scholarship at Michigan to play defense. That's what we talk about. It doesn't matter what the offense does. On my scholarship I'm Ryan Van Bergen, defensive end and I'm at Michigan to play defense."

Question: They got on your side of the field 11 times and they only scored once. In other games earlier this year, a lot of yardage and then turnovers seem to end a lot of them. Is it living dangerously to keep relying on turnovers or are you that kind of defense?

Brady Hoke: "I think we'd all like to be that kind of defense. I think we all stress turnovers, how to get ourselves to the ball and angles and punching it out or ripping it out but I don't think that is a bad thing that we're being able to create them. I don't know if it is such a good thing that the field position battle for a good point of this game, we we're getting our tails kicked. Then I thought the Wile (Matt) kid in the second half did a tremendous job of punting the football. That was great to see."

Question: What is your assessment of the field goal situation, just one bad kick?

Brady Hoke: "I think it is one bad kick and I can tell you from how he planted that I'm not that I'm Garo Yepremian (laughter) and know much about the kicking aspect. He just didn't plant well and kind of pushed it."

Question: Was there a level of physicality that even after what you did at San Diego State you outdid today? The way you play if your at Michigan, was there a different level?

Brady Hoke: "No I do not think so. I know one thing about how those guys on that othe team are coached and how they are going to play with the physicalness and on both sides of the ball, they are going to get helmets and bodies to the ball and they are going to be aggressive on the line of scrimmage."

Question: Denard had a great first half, how important is it for your offense that he gets better for all for quarters in the Big Ten season?

Brady Hoke: "I think it is obviously important but it wasn't all Denard. We had enough from the turnover standpoint and the blocking the line of scrimmage like we'd like to. I don't think we did it as well in the second half and that's disturbing because championship teams have a way of improving during the course of the game and finishing games and we didn't do that."

Question: You mentioned Denard's bad decisions today and that seems like something new, can you talk about his footwork?

Brady Hoke: "I said he had a bad decision. It may have been more, but I want to see what plays he got us into and that's something that the quarterback never gets credit for. He obviously got us in pretty good quarterback iso play depending on what they were bringing. I got the one throw where he tried to throw it into too many people with a different color jersey."

Question: His day passing was maybe not as good as he wanted to have because it spoiled the day he had on the ground.

Brady Hoke: "No I don't think so, we won the game. I'm not being sarcastic, but I think it is something that we'll have a good conversation tomorrow and we'll point out the things whether it is his feet or those kinds of things. Again, I thought the one route, I don't know if the route was totally ran the way we coach it to be run."

Question: You embraced several players on the field, what were those conversations like and how nice was it to see…

Brady Hoke: "It was great to see them, but those conversations are personal."

Question: Now that it is over, how does your mindset change for this Big Ten season and you've talked about that since day one?

Brady Hoke: "I don't know if it's changed because you prepare to win every game. I don't know if your mindset and how you go about your job for those kids any differently. We're going to be in there tomorrow and put this game to bed as coaches and players and move on to Minnesota."

Question: Is there anything about this team good or bad that surprises you? Maybe a player that has kind of really stepped up?

Brady Hoke: "I like how they like each other. I've been around teams that don't like each other. I like how they like each other and if they like each other enough and respect each other enough, they won't play for each other and that's a powerful thing. When they play for each other and they play for Michigan that's a powerful thing."


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