Stoops: "We've got a lot to work on"

See inside for at transcript of OU head coach Bob Stoops' postgame press conference following

See below for a transcript of OU head coach Bob Stoops' postgame press conference.

Opening Statement

BS: Just compliments to the TCU coaching staff, Gary Patterson and his team. They played an excellent game. They really just outplayed us, out coached us in most all areas. We couldn't do much as far as running the ball consistently. We had a drive or so where we did but overall we didn't. You know, didn't do a very good job protecting the quarterback, didn't throw the ball real well. Defensively, there were times where we allowed them to move the ball. Even if they get the ball in some favorable field position, we've gotta force field goals and towards the end we didn't. Allowed them to work the ball more than we'd like, though it was reasonable. Just very unproductive, again, the turnovers really were critical. We're going in to score and on the five-yard line we fumble and then the other one we give them the ball, I don't know, inside the 20 after the sack.

And so, again, they just outplayed us and out coached us the whole game and they deserved to win. They're a good team. I understand they had an average year a year ago, but you know, the previous two years I knew all along it's a prideful program and they've played well through the years and so anyway, they just came in here and beat us and that's it.

It's a learning experience, a hard one to learn, but a great opportunity for kids to learn a lot, right?

BS: Well, you hope so, I don't know, we'll see. I felt we were stronger and had a little more attitude to us than this. I just don't feel we're near as tough as we need to be and compete the way we need to. Just altogether. I told the players that just because we've done it before doesn't mean we're gonna do it again and sometimes I think they, you know, they may tune me out. They've heard me over and over and it's usually OK, we do pretty well. That's not always the case and you can't take it for granted and we've gotta make a lot of improvement, we've gotta do a better job as coaches if we're gonna have a chance to have any kind of success at all.

Do you think the fact that you lost so many players and had to develop new leaders with the young talent affected this team a little bit?

BS: Well, you know, that may be the case. Hopefully we'll learn and push and grow and get better as a team. We sure need to. Again, in all parts. I just didn't feel we did anything that was exceptional whatsoever today.

At the start of the third quarter, you came out and put ten points on the board but from that point on, we really didn't see anything. Is there anything that you can put your finger on as to why?

BS: Well, to say why, I don't know. Is it the attitude and the discipline and the toughness we come out and play with? Is it the play calling? You know, you can mix it all together. It's hard to put your finger on. If you can do it and do it successfully like that, why can't you do it again and again? And that's what I'm saying; we just weren't near as consistent, obviously, as you need to be.

I thought the secondary, for the most part, were in very good position to tackle.

BS: I thought for the most part, definitely, from what I could tell, were in pretty good shape, good position and covered well and tackled well.

That was a problem area last year for the defense, but I thought Chijioke, playing man coverage, other than getting a really bad call on the interference in the early part of the game, he was on top of it.

BS: He seemed to play well from what I saw and like you said, I felt overall they were pretty decent.

The injuries, there were a number of those in the second half. Any of those that you consider critical?

BS: I believe so. I believe John Williams tore his anterior cruciate ligament (ACL). I think that's the first indication, what they believe. I'm sure they'll do an MRI to be sure, but indications are right now that that's the case.

That certainly happened at a position where you just don't need it, do you.

BS: No, it's already a position that's thin and that makes it a little more difficult, definitely.

Clint Ingram and Adrian (Peterson) came back and it looked like they were OK?

BS: Yeah, from all indications, they're all right.

It will be hard week for you and the players and the coaches, but sometimes getting slapped square in the face can be a good thing.

BS: Well, I prefer to get slapped different ways.

Bob, is this the most disappointed you've been with a team here?

BS: Probably. Yeah, probably, since back in '99, I guess. Just the way we reacted to everything. I'm disappointed across the board, definitely.

Bob, do you think with the way the season ended last year ….

BS: I don't think it has anything to do with last year.

But do you think, in a sense, you guys lost the mystique a little bit as a national power?

BS: That doesn't mean anything. That's all paper stuff. When we go play, it doesn't matter. No one sits there and rolls over. No one ever has. We've earned it. You mean we've been winning all these other games in all these other years because people thought we were just Oklahoma? No. Because we made plays. We coached better, we made plays and that's how you win. And that's how we've always won. I don't buy into that and I've said that other years, too. I just don't believe in that.

Bob, in the offensively line, you were just never able to establish anything. You mentioned that you think it was as much attitude as anything?

BS: Whatever it is, whether it's discipline, toughness, attitude, all of that, you know, we just weren't very good. Guys running through on us, getting penetration, not being able to hold up the pocket and give the quarterbacks time, it just wasn't there good enough.

How concerned are you about the offensive line?

BS: I'm concerned. Not only offensive line, everybody. All of it together. Offensive line, running game, passing game, they compliment one another and neither one was very good today. So we've got a lot of work to do.

Bob, do you think Paul and Rhett , all the hard work they did in August, did it just not transfer to the game today?

BS: That surprised me too. I thought that both would have reacted and played better than they did. There were some opportunities there and we just let some nice shots… just overthrown, underthrown and then just couldn't quite get it right. You've got to be able to put the ball where it needs to be.

Were there not as many quarterback run calls or is that something that's in the game plan more than what it was called?

BS: There are some that we felt they could have pulled the ball on the quarterback read play and had the opportunity for some plays. We'll see it on tape. I'm not gonna sit here and be critical, but there were several that we though should have been pulled and would have been some good quarterback run plays.

How about Adrian Peterson, coach? Was it that TCU was on him, or was it your offensive line play? How do you think he played?

BS: Well, I think it's some of that. He's running hard like always. He didn't have a lot of space most of the time and the situation. You just look at it and go back. Should we have run him more? Probably. Those are all things we'll go back and look at. He's not the only one out there.

I know you told us before the season you were going to flip flop the quarterbacks. Do you like doing that? Are you going to continue to do that?

BS: I don't know that anybody likes doing that. We're trying to find who's going to be the most consistent and give you the best opportunity to make the plays you need and to move the team. Neither guy really took much of a control or played very consistently to get a good feel.

After you came back to tie it in the third quarter, each quarterback came back and made a bad play in the fourth quarter, throwing into coverage and then fumbling deep in your own territory. Talk about how the momentum shifted there.

BS: You know, this game isn't real, real complicated. If you turn the ball over, you're going to get beat. And we did. Those guys each need to be more responsible with the ball. Some of that, too, you take the blame as a coach. We've done it for seven years (not allow the quarterbacks to get hit in practices). We're just not about to go hittin' them in scrimmages and take a guy out before the season. You don't get ‘em back. We're constantly preaching it (taking care of the ball). Those turnovers were a big part of the game and you can't do it.

Is there a lot of stuff going on just because guys are so young?

BS: I don't think so. I thought when you look out there, most of the guys that played the biggest part of the game are guys that have been around here. So I'm not going to sit here and throw out a lot of excuses that there's a lot of young guys making mistakes.

Bob, did you consider playing Bomar the last couple of series after Paul Thompson's interception?

BS: Yeah, but again, I don't know that there were some occasions in there that we felt he could have performed a little better, too. It's not like that was the obvious thing to do.

The way you guys finished the last two drives, with a chance to come back and tie, it wasn't typical Oklahoma football - the way those drives ended with a fizzle.

BS: Again, we just didn't execute. We had opportunities. I think on the one, we got first and five and we throw the interception. The other one, we start off with a good run, I think it's second and five and we run it again for a three yard loss. We miss a blocking assignment and let a down lineman run right through and hit us. Now it's third and eight. It's easy to say we'll run it again, well, you just got hit for a three-yard loss. And then we had opportunities on the one throw. Lendy's open coming across the middle and we throw it behind him. You just gotta execute and make plays when you get the opportunity. We didn't do it.

Bob, the only real production you had out of the wide receivers was Travis Wilson. Was that they quarterbacks coming back to him because they trust him or were they making the proper checks.

BS: Those were designed routes to Travis on those few occasions. And we had a few other opportunities that would have been big and we just weren't able to have the accuracy to get it done.

You got to Tye Gunn a few times. Was there just not the consistency you would have like to have seen in putting pressure on him?

BS: I thought they did a nice job with those little quick throws. I think we were a lot better in the second half handling those. We got in position sooner on them and I think those were their reads to get it out of their hands before we could get the pressure. Again, I feel like we reacted a lot better in the second half, really played pretty well. I would have like to have seen us force a field goal on that one when they got the ball down in close. Other than that, defensively, I thought we were pretty decent in the second half.

At the start of the fourth quarter, it didn't look like there was a lot of excitement on the sideline, like you would see in the Texas game. How do you bring that attitude out in a team?

BS: It's hard to say. I think a lot of this, whether it goes back to the summer to some guys again feeling like it's just their right to win or their right to do well and don't have the true investment that maybe other guys have that have done it. And that's part of it. The energy, the actual fight that's in you. I don't know. Like we've said, some of these guys haven't had to do it before and they need to figure out how to. And it's my job, again, I'm not putting it all on the kids. I've got to figure out ways to get it across to them and reach ‘em and hopefully we can.

And we've never been a team that's all rah-rah, running around the locker room and breaking the locker room up. You know, that's not our style. We're more down to business, what has to be done and inner intensity. I felt like we were ready to play. I'm not taking anything away from TCU. They outplayed us and out-coached us. And that's it. We've got to get a lot better.

Bob, you're all about championships. You tell us that all the time. Can you think about championships right now or do you just have to think about getting ready for Tulsa before you worry about Big 12 Championships?

BS: Shoot, we're just eyeballin' Tulsa. That's all we can do right now. But coming into this game all of our talk was focused on TCU. You win enough and those things come and right now we're 0-1 and Tulsa will come in here looking to do the same thing next week.


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