Monday With The Wildcats

Pat Fitzgerald along with a few Wildcat players took to the podium to address Saturday's loss to Penn State and look ahead to their game with Indiana. Get the latest from Evanston, as Fitzgerald discusses the game, Dan Persa's health, and more.

Northwestern senior quarterback Dan Persa is listed as questionable because of his turf toe injury, which he suffered in the fourth quarter against Penn State.

• "It's one of those deals when you kind of sprain the joint in your toe. We'll see how it responds as he goes through treatment. He feels a lot better today than he did yesterday. So we'll see how that progresses."

• He continued, "Right now we've got him in a boot, so right now he'll be questionable for the game. I'll probably be able to let you know more on Thursday."

• Fitz also said, "We'll operate and expect Dan to play and we'll adjust accordingly as the week goes along. I like the role we've been able to put Kain into. I think it's keeping defenses off balance, and then obviously having a guy like Dan back there who's put almost career numbers up the last few weeks, especially against Penn State, who I think was one of the top-rated defenses in the country going into the game. He's been playing at a pretty high level. So I'm pretty excited for both guys I guess is what my answer would be."

• Fitz talked a lot about sense of urgency: "We've got, obviously, a heightened sense of urgency because of the situation we've put ourselves in, to prolong the life of this team. But what's important now is that we find a way to get better this week. That's why I challenge the guys, if everybody gets one percent better we've got a chance to improve and make up those plays that we're not making."

Damien Proby is listed over David Nwabuisi as the starting middle linebacker for this week. Said Fitzgerald, "We wanted to try to jumpstart some things. Fundamentally, David (Nwabuisi) needed to play better and I thought he did. He got nominated for being Defensive Player of the Game, so that was encouraging to us, he was a bit more fundamentally sound, he tackled better and he fit better, so that's encouraging."

• Fitz said they expect to have Adonis Smith back this week

Venric Mark had a lot of trouble with catching kicks, said lights weren't a good excuse, needs better focus

• Really funny bit about Tyrus Jones being on homecoming court, team crowned him with a Burger King crown during practice on Thursday

Players who addressed the media: Al Netter, Kevin Watt, Niko Mafuli

• Mafuli: focused on positives of the games instead of frustration from losing

• Netter: O-line has looked really good at times, really bad at times…iffy pass protection, have been allowing too many sacks

• Watt: mixing up the starters didn't change much, everyone confident in each other regardless of who is in

• Netter: biggest hurdle is frustration, haven't faced this kind of losing since being at NU, need to work harder in practice, be more consistent

• Netter: don't block differently with Kain and Persa, but Colter scrambles a lot so need to hold blocks for longer

• One particular thing hasn't been problem, been up in every game, it isn't a question of talent, the team just hasn't found a way to win

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