We' re disappointed but we're not discouraged.There's nothing to be discouraged about.We don't give up and that's a great sign from your football team.
Describe why you decided to call timeout during Notre Dame's final drive once they got down near the goalline with 36 seconds remaining.
I just wanted enough time to run a couple of plays....so we thought we'd call a timeout. I'll look at the situation again, maybe it wasn't a great idea, but at that point in the game I wanted to save a few seconds and hope to get 3 or 4 plays at the end.
We didn't tackle as well as we need to but at times it was better. You know when you go up against good players, when they're big and fast and good, sometimes they're hard to tackle. But we're not tackling as well as we need to, but I thought we showed some signs of improvement. We've worked on it a lot and we'll continue to work on it.
On the play of the linebacking corps
Apparently they played well and I thought we did a good job or rotating the younger players in to keep those guys fresh (LB'ers Holland, Carlito and Werner) and that helps us tackle better because they don't worn out quite as much.
On the play of wide receiver Keith Smith
He's a heckuva football player, he really is. He does all the things you want him to do. He makes people miss, he blocks, he catches the ball great and he seems to be getting stronger as the season goes on and he wears well. He really does, he just doesn't seem to get as tired as some of the others. He's lost some weight from where he was at this time last year, he was too heavy last year. I think he's in outstanding shape and a great player.
On how the team continually kept fighting.
We didn't quit. Boilermakers don't quit and that's just the way it has to be and I'm proud of that. Our team needs to be proud of that. It hurts to lose, it's disappoint to lose but I'm not discouraged. We've had great advanced training coming into conference play. We had not many starters coming back on offense, a lot of new faces, people not expected to do so well. But I look at scores across the country and I don't think we're all that far off. I don't think we've arrived yet, but we certainly have a lot to look forward to and suit up on Saturdays and believe we have a chance to win. I don't have any questions about that. It's been great advanced training. We've played some really good football teams in some tough situations, that's great advanced training. We've come from behind in these games and that's great advanced training for conference play.
What do you say to your ballclub after a tough loss like this?
The same thing I'm telling you guys, we're disappointed but we're not discouraged. We have a heckuva football team that fights all the way to the end and that's been one of our goals for the season. You want to be the team that hits the hardest, team that makes the fewest mistakes and the team that never quits. And we made some mistakes but we never quit. It'll be hard to hit on all three of those all the time, but that's our goal. It just hurts to lose a game like that but it was a great game in front a great crowd at Ross Ade and I really appreciate all the fans who came out, what a great atmosphere.