Stanford junior Jack Salisbury sat in on the postgame press conference in the Cardinal locker room after the team's 24-23 victory over Arizona on Saturday. Coach Harbaugh and the players had plenty to say after a raucous locker room celebration.
Quarterback Alex Loukas
On entering the game in the fourth quarter to lead the team on its game-winning drive:
"All my teammates came up to me and said I trust you, I believe in you. Fletch just said, 'Do your thing, I believe in you.'"
"I just warmed up, got my mind right, didn't really think too much — just played and reacted."
"I didn't have to do too much. Hit the hole and got some yards."
Center Alex Fletcher
On quarterback Alex Loukas:
"They didn't realize how fast Alex was. I think they realized a little too late."
"Alex didn't get very many reps this week in practice. He was taking one or two plays every 12 at most. We kinda stuck to what we know — the book option."
On the offense's persistence:
"We knew after the first series what we were going against. We knew would have our way with them up the front. We had to overcome turnovers but we always believed. We kept riding, kept fighting. Suddenly a 70-yard one pops. Keep grinding."
On where the program is now:
"The difference is Coach Harbaugh. He believes in us. As an offense the last two weeks, including [parts of] the Arizona game, we would drive down the field and shoot ourselves in the foot. He's a real positive guy. Everyone has this belief—we really worked hard to push ourselves to the limit and that shows in the last game-winning drive."
"We've obviously been through ups and downs, mostly downs. It's really nice to be able to smile."
Coach Jim Harbaugh
"I was really proud of our guys. We overcame a lot of obstacles today. Both sides of the ball, offense defense and special teams. We found a way to win. The leaders of our team kept believing."
"I was really proud of our ball club, [if] we can make a come-from-behind fourth-quarter game like that, that says a lot about the heart of our team."
On the Homecoming crowd of 30,689:
"Why these seats would not be filled, I can't understand. If you care anything about Stanford, then come support these guys. ... I'd love to see it louder, more people there. Just for our players. We walk out of that tunnel and I want them to see a full stadium of people in red. It's important. A lot of people talk about how you gotta win first, but what if by [them] being here it helps our team win? Don't we owe our guys that? Just for our players, I want our atmosphere to be like that."
On where the Cardinal stands after the Arizona victory:
"We got a big one next week. I told the team to enjoy this. Go to bed to night, get some rest. As a coach this really makes you happy. If your team can battle, overcome adversity and find a way to win."
"There's something special about this ballclub. That's when it's most fun, when it's a different guy every week. A lot of our wins have been a different set of guys that stepped up. Today was Alex Loukas and many others but I can't say enough about the way Alex performed in crunch time."
The head coach also commented on the status of starting quarterback Tavita Pritchard, who left the game after experiencing concussion-like symptoms at the end of the second quarter. Harbaugh said that Pritchard should be ready for next week's game at UCLA, but that if he were not able to play, Alex Loukas would take over the reins.
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