Rutgers Interim Coach Norries Wilson Discusses New Role on Big Ten Conference Call

Rutgers (1-2, 0-1) looks for a bounce back on homecoming against Kansas after an ugly loss at Penn State to end a rough week for the program. Interim coach Norries Wilson participated in his first Big Ten teleconference Tuesday, and offered more on the team's preparation with practice closed today to the media.

Opening Statement: “Thank you for having me. We’ve got the University of Kansas coming to play this week. They had a bye to prepare for us, so they are probably ahead of where we are in our preparation by a few days. We’ve had two good practices against their looks, and I feel like we’ve got a good beat on what we’re against this week. We’re hoping to come out here and put a good product on the field on Saturday.

Question: How valuable is your punter Joey Roth to the team?

Interim coach Norries Wilson – “I think every team’s punter is valuable. Joe has done a good job. He had some that weren’t great Saturday night, but he put together some good ones that helped us flip the field when we got a few drives going and tried to get the field position back on Saturday night. It’s a valuable tool to have when you have a punter that can kick inside the 10 and we can put an opponent on the long field.”

Question: What has stood out to you so far on tape in preparing for Kansas?

Norries Wilson: “They run a couple of fronts on defense that we have to be prepared for them to shift their line up. They’re athletic up front. They’ve got some guys that can run around and we have to make sure we try to keep it clean up front and win the line of scrimmage. That’s something we didn’t do great this past Saturday, so we’re emphasizing winning the line of scrimmage and making sure that we don’t let them tee off on us.”

Question: What are you and the other assistants trying to do to keep some sense of normalcy with the players?

Norries Wilson: “It’s normal through the week. I know when you hear that the head coach has been suspended, you think that he’s out of the building, that he’s not around. Coach Flood is here every day for the day-to-day. He’s not around on game day. So they see him every day. Practice hasn’t changed. The structure of practice hasn’t changed. I coach the running backs all day on practice day, and we just carry on from there. For the assistant coaches and the players, there hasn’t been any drastic change as far as their preparation for the game.”

Question: How was it for you on game day, obviously a tough first one at Penn State?

Norries Wilson: “It was a tough first at Penn State. I had to fall back into something I hadn’t done in three years. My guys were taken care of, and I made arrangements that if they needed to see me, come grab me or I grab them if I need to see them. It won’t be new again this coming Saturday, and I’m sure I’ll be more comfortable than I was this past game but I was not uncomfortable on Saturday at all.”

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