Quote Book: Syracuse vs. Villanova

Quotes from Syracuse players and coaches after their season opening win over Villanova.

After defeated Villanova in strange fashion, several Syracuse players and head coach Scott Shafer were available to the media. Below are several quotes from post-game.

Shafer: “First off we’re 1-0. That’s all that counts, we’re 1-0. I’ve been on the other side of it, I was a defensive coordinator for many years and we played Wisconsin one year and had something like 11 sacks at Northern Illinois. We had a great performance, but we lost and we felt horrible. We’re 1-0. Was it pretty? No, it wasn’t pretty, but we found a way.

“We lost (quarterback) Terrel [Hunt] and that was unfortunate, but the NCAA is trying to clean up football, that’s an emphasis. So, that was a shame but it gave us an opportunity. It gave us an opportunity to put Austin Wilson in the game to see what he could do and to lean on some other people to find ways to win a game. Because that’s what it’s about.

“I'm proud of the fact that we came away with the victory, I'm extremely pleased and happy with the fans that showed up. They said we had 41,000 people. The people who stayed to the end when we needed them the most were there for us like they always have been. I just have to thank the fans and the community because we're going to get it better every week, but there's something good about saying that it wasn't the performance that we wanted but we got a victory. Teams when they grow and mature, they find a way to win ugly. I've been on the other side of it and lost pretty and that's no good.

“I also want to say hats off to (Villanova coach) Andy Talley. He’s got 204-victories. He’s a career head coach over there at Villanova and he’s done a great job with that program, and he’s tough to defend.

“That quarterback Johnny Robertson is one tough son-of-a-gun. I’ll be real interested to see how many yards he got that were not by design. Where it’s not there and he takes off and makes people miss and moves the chains.

“So hats off to Villanova and an unbelievable effort by them. I think they’re going to have one heck of a season. I hope they stay healthy.

“But Congratulations to my team and, more importantly, congratulations to the fans. Stick by us because we’re going to get better every week.”

Shafer: “I’m mad because I wish we could have won that game by a couple of touchdowns. I think we were a good enough team to do that and we didn’t get it done. I thought Villanova really did a great job today. It’s just your nature. You have a picture in your head of the way you want something to do and when it doesn’t go that you don’t feel good about it. But, great job by (holder) Riley Dixon. I asked him after one of those field goals ‘If we go purple are you good?’ And he said, ‘I got this coach.”

Gulley: “We just had to bounce back. That’s what happens in college football. That was adversity for us and we had to rise up against that. We need to come back and clean up everything we know we need to clean up and come back with a lot of intensity and hard work.”

Wilson: “Literally, I was focusing on what the next play (after Hunt was ejected) was going to be, how to signal it in. At that point I just had to react. He (Hunt) said slow it down. Let things come to me and take what the defense gives you.”

Dixon: “Coach Shafer came up to me and asked me. Naturally I’m an athlete, a competitor. You may not think so (because I’m a punter). I’m excited to go out there and help the team the best way I can.”

Broyld: “First thing that coach said is ‘that a win is a win’. We didn’t come out and execute the way we expected to. We fought through adversity and you know we won the game.”

Moore: “We run a lot of fakes on special teams. I was just trying to make it as normal as possible. The other team had been calling it out all day, but they hadn’t really been playing it. So, I knew the opportunity was there. I ran my route and I knew I was covered. I saw Riley (Dixon) jump. I had no idea what he was doing. I couldn’t really see the ball until it was three inches from my face. Then, I just reached out and grabbed it.”

Lynch: “It’s luck of the draw. You wipe your head, thank God, and keep pushing. We got back out there and made some stops."

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