Wisconsin Post Game: Coach Carr

In Coach Lloyd Carr's post game presser he commented on his frustration over some of the mistakes being made, his sputtering offense, his running back situation, Steve Breaston, and more.

Opening Statement:

“I think Wisconsin did a great job. Give them credit…their coaches and their players. Tremendous second half. We had our opportunities. We just made too many mistakes. I think particularly in the second half their offense established an effective running game and hurt us a little bit with the screens. But the big problem we had in the second half was offensively, with the exception of one big play, we just couldn’t get much going. We hurt ourselves with very very poor field position because of two turnovers and a couple of mistakes in the kicking game. Wisconsin did the things they had to do to win and we just couldn’t make that happen.”

On why the offense sputtered in the second half:

“We had a third down pass in our first drive (of the second half)…we dropped a pass…something Jason Avant just doesn’t do. That would have given us good field position and a first down. Then they took the ball and began to move the chains a lot better in the second half. They ran the football effectively off tackle. They did a great job with their wide receivers of what we call a crack block. They came down inside, blocked our safeties, and got to the perimeter of the defense. Those plays were very effective. They established a momentum. They got the crowd back into the game. But our defense hung tight, kept them out of the end zone, and made them settle for field goals. Then, of course, we come up with a big play when we desperately need it, but they made the plays in the final drive.”

On Brian Calhoun:

“Calhoun…I gained a lot of respect for him. I liked him coming into this game. He is one tough guy, and he keeps coming. He has proved to have an incredible endurance. He does not fumble the football. We had one, I think, that came loose that we couldn’t get. But for the most part he does a great job of reading his blocks and making great cuts. The six, seven, eight-yarders...those runs keep the chains moving and maintain possession. That’s what allows you to do some great things with time of possession.”

On if he is concerned about Chad Henne:

“No. I’ve got to look at the film, but I think he was tentative on one throw there in the second quarter where we could have had a big play. But these are good teams, and it’s not just one guy. I’ve got to look at the film and see what the film says.”

On the quarterback draw for the touchdown:

“We expected them to run the football on that down because they had a timeout left. Even if the run isn’t successful, the way they had run the football, we fully expected them to run on that down. They just did a good job of executing a good play. It was a good call on their part, but we felt like we were in a decent defense. We expected run on that down, but they executed their assignments and it won the game for them.”

On Max Martin and Kevin Grady:

“I think they’re both very young backs. Obviously as a tailback Max has got to learn to, what we call, get your pads down. He did some very very good things in there. He had some very good runs. He ran hard. I told him before the game…the most important thing is, if you’re a back, you can’t run afraid to fumble the football. You’ve got to run aggressively. We’ve got to learn from that because they are costly. Right now we need both of them. We just have to see if we can bet better this week.”

On how much fatigue played into Wisconsin’s offensive improvement in the second half:

“Well, I think that’s part of it. We were out there too long [defensively], and of course, we made some mistakes in the kicking game. That gave them great field position in the second half. Really, we had great field position the entire first half, and left some points on the board. As we got into the second half, everything changed. We just could not get a drive going where we could do some things. As we went on, I think our defense played extremely hard. It was a hard hitting football. It was a great football game, but from our standpoint it’s certainly a great disappointment.”

On Breaston’s decision to bring the ball out of the end zone:

“Well I don’t know where he is at. I can’t tell you what he was thinking. I can’t tell you.”

On if he had any thought of going to Gutierrez:


On if the mistakes being made on the field are irritating:

“I think the word that we can all use is frustrating. There are some things that are happening to us that are very frustrating. That, to me, sums it up. That’s where we are. That’s some of the things that we need to do to win. That begins with me. I’ve got to do a better job, so I will.”

On Gabe Watson and Alan Branch playing well up front:

“I thought we played well inside for a long time. I thought I saw Gabe make one great play. I thought we did a lot of good things inside. Eventually it was on the perimeter where I thought we got hurt more than anything else. My guess is they played pretty well in there.”

On if there was a comfort level after the flea-flicker:

“There was no comfort level. It was great to have the lead, but we certainly knew there was a lot of football left. The momentum of the game changed in the third quarter when we failed to establish any type of drive. Of course, the longer they were on the field the more confidence they gained. We did wear down a little bit, but we never stopped fighting. We played extremely hard. We did a good job in terms of not giving up big plays on defense. I think defensively we did a lot of good things against a team that offensively runs the football. Now I haven’t seen the yardage, down & distance, and all of that stuff. We’ve got to improve on every phase of the game. But we hung in there a long time on defense. If we could have made a way to make a play there at the end, we’d come out feeling pretty good about our defense.”

On why he kicked a field goal on third down with nine seconds left in the half:

“I talked to the officials right after the half because the clock ran down. There was a flag on the delay of game, but the game clock went down to six seconds. They marched the penalty off, and with six seconds we were not going to chance having the clock run out on us. We substituted when they began to march the penalty off, and there were six seconds on the clock. By the time I knew they were putting three seconds back on the clock, we were already on the field [with the field goal unit]. So we would have faced another penalty when we had to substitute in and out. I told the referee that I think that’s something they need to do from a rules standpoint. Come over and say you’ve got time because of the penalty and because of putting time back on the clock. I think that’s something we need to do from rules standpoint.”

On what has to happen for this team to bounce back:

“First and foremost when you get off to a start like this after very high expectations that you have as a group of people, you have to maintain an attitude that you are not going to be distracted by all of the things that go around you. You can’t begin to point the finger. As a group of people, you’ve got to believe in each other, believe in what you’re doing, and don’t let your attitude, work ethic, and your purpose be affected. That’s not easy, and it’s particularly not easy for kids this age. It’s not easy for adults this age. I think the main thing is we just have to keep fighting and keep believing that we can be a good football team if we make some corrections in terms of the mistakes that we’re making…and do some of the things that we need to do better.”

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