Coach Jim TressellWhat did you think of the game?
That was a heck of a football game. For us to come down here and win with a young group against a veteran group, we feel pretty proud. We forced some turnovers, we didn't commit many turnovers, and we did some good things on special teams.
What can you say about Nugent's performance?
Mike is a veteran. He is very technique-conscious. It doesn't matter to him if it's raining or if he has a 55-yarder with two seconds. He is a good kicker, the best in college football.
Was their blitz package more than you thought it would be? They seemed extremely quick.
They were aggressive. They have some great athletes. They're people in the secondary did a good job of grabbing on and making it hard to get guys open. It was a challenge, our offense knew it was going to be a challenge. They knew that their number one path was don't turn it over, get close enough and get us some points.
Did [Ohio St. placekicker Mike] Nugent allow you to do some more conservative things? Because he is so accurate?
I think it is a good combination. We have a young quarterback. We have young offensive linemen. So maybe you don't have to stretch what they're ready to do... One thing we tell our quarterbacks all the time is, when we've got three, don't foul up on a three. If we can go to seven let's do it. When you have a good defense like ours, and we're playing against a young quarterback, I didn't think they'd be able to score much on us.
What were some things that you didn't like?
We had a 15-yard penalty. When you give a good team a 15-yard freebie you're going to have a hard time. You know, they made some plays. 21, 44, 6, those guys are good. I thought our defense did a good job against them.
How huge was it to get that interception and touchdown in the second quarter?
Oh it's huge. It's two things: one, we can pick one down in their area, two you can come on the first play and make it seven. That goes along with that formula of being opportunistic. If we had to settle for three there that would have been almost a moral victory for them. So I thought that was huge.
What did you think of [quarterback Justin] Zwick's play?
He didn't throw it to them [NC State]. When you're a young quarterback... That's a big step. Their young quarterback better make that step or he may not make it.
Does your off week next week come at a good time?
Obviously, you know, I think every one comes at a great time. What am I going to say, 'No? Guys I can't believe you scheduled this?'
Kicker Mike NugentWere the wet conditions of the field a concern?
We had a little walk through last night and the field was really wet. I knew we were going to have to make a few adjustments. It was good to make a 50-yarder on my first attempt in a new stadium. That gave me a lot of confidence."