Video: Texas Tech Monday Presser Recap

RaiderPower.com recaps Monday's press conference involving Texas Tech head coach Kliff Kingsbury, defensive coordinator David Gibbs, offensive coordinator Eric Morris, senior running back DeAndre Washington and senior linebacker Micah Awe..

Texas Tech head coach Kliff Kingsbury's trancript from Monday

Q. How would you describe the emotion and attitude of your team right now?

COACH KINGSBURY: I haven't been around them today, but I think they'll be good. I think they know we didn't play our best game against a top 3 team in the country, and that's what happens. You have that many penalties, that many turnovers, it's not going to be close.

Q. But you still have a chance for confidence to be impact leading this three-game stretch?

COACH KINGSBURY: I would hope so. Yeah, I would hope so. I mean I know speaking, if you're going to ask a lot of people outside of that building if we had a chance to be 4 and 2 with a win this week, most people would have probably not thought that possible. And so had a tough game the week before. Baylor got after us, and so now let's worry about us and try to get things going for these last seven.

Q. Do you think that there was as many penalties? Is it just people trying to do too much?

COACH KINGSBURY: Probably some of that. I mean that was a very good team. Probably making up -- you know, trying to keep up a little bit. And then, you know, we had one guy I think who had four or five himself and hadn't played a lot and you can't have that. You gotta be ready to go when you're asked to come in the game. So just disappointing on that end. We'd made big strides in those areas, the penalties and turnovers, so to play such a good team and then revert back to that was disappointing.

Q. And are they doing I would think early on they would have to do running drills?

COACH KINGSBURY: Yeah. We'll probably have to get back to that after that performance.

Q. Where do you see your defense compared to last week? Do you think it's better, the same, worse or what?

COACH KINGSBURY: I think it's a work in progress. That's a very good offense. They've done that to a lot of people, you know. Seen that side grow as far as their maturity, their leadership, and so we just have to keep getting better and try and build some confidence over the next few weeks.

Q. Back on the offense line for a moment and the interior guys issues, was that maybe because of (indiscernible), just trying to be ready for him?

COACH KINGSBURY: Yeah, possibly -- no, I think more, like I said, one guy comes in and not ready to play. If you get four or five penalties yourself, that's hard to put it on anything else. But yeah, they have a great front. I guess it could have been jitters for that, but to me it's just not being mentally prepared to play.

Q. And also started the third quarter, y'all marched right down the field and didn't score. What do you think that difference was in that drive compared to some of the other ones you had?

COACH KINGSBURY: Yeah, I don't know. I mean I can look at a couple where we fumbled, you know, we were moving the ball. I can look at one where we dropped a touchdown pass. And I think you get behind to that point and people started pressing and that's what we did, started pressing and guys weren't making routine plays and we were making penalties. So just didn't handle that type of pressure well.

Q. Is Patrick getting any sort of treatment on his knee or is he just sort of letting it heal itself?

COACH KINGSBURY: No, he's getting treatment every day, and he told me it feels a lot better today. So hopefully by this week he can be 100 percent.

Q. Can you talk about what kind of treatments he's getting?

COACH KINGSBURY: I don't even know. I just know he goes in there for rehab every day.

Q. Le'Raven seemed to neutralize Shawn Oakman all day. Was it something that was talked about beforehand or was it just Le'Raven just coming out and playing his game?

COACH KINGSBURY: Yeah, I think just two good players going at it. I think oak man had a couple of plays. They did a good job of moving him around, moved him inside a couple of times. But just two good players going at it and I felt Le'Raven handled himself well.

Q. Looking at Iowa State, can you talk about the improvement they've been showing on defense and what that poses for you and what you guys see as their weapon on offense?

COACH KINGSBURY: Yeah. I think they're a much improved team. Played Toledo, who is a top 25 team, very close in overtime and really had a great game against Kansas last week. So much better than last year. I think defensively they've done some things schematically that'll help them out. They're turning people over. And then offense, anytime you have a senior quarterback that's played a lot, that's going to give you problems. He can run well; he throws well, so it'll be a good challenge for us.

Q. With all the second or backup receivers that you had to use on Saturday, after you looked at the film, which of those guys had the best all-around games?

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COACH KINGSBURY: I think Zach Austin really stepped up. He hadn't repped a ton with the ones and came in there and made a bunch of plays for us over and over. And Tony Brown had a couple he'd like to have back, but made some plays at the end which was good to get him going. And we'll see if Lauderdale can go this week, which will definitely help. But with our offense, the way we do things, if you're one of those young wide receivers, you gotta grow up quick because we're going to need you.

Q. What did Devin do?

COACH KINGSBURY: He had some sort of internal bruising, so we'll see how he does this week.

Q. Internal, upper body somewhere?

COACH KINGSBURY: Yeah.

Q. Anything more specific than that?

COACH KINGSBURY: No. Just somewhere on his upper body.

Q. You talked about in the post-game press conference about having some of those young receivers really have to grow up a lot this week. How do you that that in practice to get them ready?

COACH KINGSBURY: They have to do it themselves really I mean you put them in the positions to be successful and you get them as many reps as you can, but that's the deal mentally, they gotta come along fast and be prepared to be in the moment and make plays.

Q. Do you feel confident with having them if we don't have Dylan and Ian and Devin (pictured below) next week?

COACH KINGSBURY: Yeah. I think so. I obviously not ideal. But the guys we brought them here for a reason and they gotta grow up and make plays. I think they're going to get a bunch of opportunities this week to learn the game plan, know what's going on. So that should help come Saturday getting a lot more reps during the week.

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Q. What's Murphy's status this week?

COACH KINGSBURY: He'll be out this week.

Q. Will Patrick start on Saturday?

COACH KINGSBURY: He will.

Q. Whether it was the effort against Texas Christian or the effort this week against Baylor, how do you view Pat Mahomes kind of playing through some pain, and do the fans have an idea of what he's actually playing through?

COACH KINGSBURY: I don't think so. Probably not. He's a tough kid. Just talking to our trainers, they've been very surprised the way he's handled it and the fact that he was able to finish that game and then play this one the way he did. Just proud of him. I know it really shows his teammates what type of competitor he is, and that helps our entire program.

Q. Is there a different mindset when you go into this game in terms of how the players approach it when everybody has already kind of checked it off as a win around town as opposed to maybe what you had to face last week?

COACH KINGSBURY: Yeah. I hope not. You try and fight against that as a coach because you know this is a good team. Coach Rhoads has had a lot of success there. It's a veteran team with a veteran quarterback and they're going to come in here expecting to win. We had a great game with them last year right down to the wire, and we know it'll be a great game this year.

Q. Does that even have to be addressed with the team or do they already know that's kind of your attitude on it?

COACH KINGSBURY: Yeah. I think they know. Like I said, a lot of those guys are back from last year when it came right down to the end against them. So they know what type of team is coming in.

Q. What did you think about Davis on those two drives?

COACH KINGSBURY: Yeah, he did a great job. He's the most prepared guy on the field, you know, in my opinion every time he goes out there. So to watch him

execute at a high level, threw some balls away, which was great when it wasn't there, made some great reads, made some great checks. He's always on top of

his game.

Q. What type of improvement are you looking for on the other side of the ball?

COACH KINGSBURY: Just starts with the turnovers and penalties, more than anything. We gotta get that corrected. When you do that, you don't give yourself a chance to even compete. And we didn't. That game was over early based on the fact we were giving the ball away like we were.

Q. Back on (indiscernible), you said he was out this week. And just eyeballing, it did not look good at all. Is it going to be a long-term treatment?

COACH KINGSBURY: We'll see. We'll see. We're going to deal with it this week and then take it from there.

Q. And once he left, what are the issues that you had (No microphone). Do you have any other options?

COACH KINGSBURY: We do. We'll just create competition in that position. Rob Castaneda is a guy that comes to mind that needs to step up, Emeka Okafor. We'll have them with Tony get some reps and see who the best guy is and he'll start on Saturday.

Q. You guys were in some adverse scenarios last year. You had kind of lopsided on Saturday. You looked in their eyes. Did you see give up like maybe you saw sometimes a year ago?

COACH KINGSBURY: No. I thought they fought. I thought the effort was good. Once again, just didn't give ourselves a chance. If you turn it over three times in the second quarter against a top team in the country, that's what's going to happen. And they know that. We just gotta clean that aspect up. But they tried hard. They fought hard. So that was good to see.

Q. The consistency, you've seen that during practice, during the week or is it just two anomalies?

COACH KINGSBURY: I think more than anything was, you know, you have three of your top four out. That's going to hurt you. But we can't make excuses. Like I said, with this offense that we run, those young guys gotta step up and gotta make plays. So that's something we'll work at this week.

Q. A lot of people saw Baylor last year with Patrick Mahomes and said that was a big growing up point for the team and for Patrick. But did you also see something last year on the road against Iowa State that maybe kind of matured him as well?

COACH KINGSBURY: Yeah, to me that was a more impressive effort because we were out of bowl contention. It's cold, it's windy. It's a very tough environment and he kept bringing us back, kept bringing us back, and it's not easy to do up there. So I think that's when I really started to see some special things in him.

Q. Symmank did not kick off. Was that an injury or a situation you just wanted to get somebody different in?

COACH KINGSBURY: Yeah, I just wanted to save his leg a little bit, and Clayton had been doing a good job, let him have some kicks.

Q. Is Patrick's -- he had a couple of picks on Saturday. Can you attribute that at all to him maybe not being able to push off as well on that front foot?

COACH KINGSBURY: No. You know, one was I think him just trying to do too much, once again feeling the pressure when you get behind like that, you're trying to throw 14-point touchdown passes and they don't exist. And the second one was a fourth down that he threw up and kind of served as a punt.

Q. Can you just talk about Mike Warren a little bit and what he brings to the table for Iowa State and the problem that he poses for you guys?

COACH KINGSBURY: Yeah. Good player. I think we gotta do a good job of knowing where he's at. You know, I think more than anything, the thing that jumps out at me this year is just they're a more veteran team. They're not making mistakes, and you know they're going to be well coached. Their defensive coordinator has been there forever, does a tremendous job. Coach Mangino took Kansas to a BCS game, tremendous coach. So both sides of the ball are going to be tremendously coached and you gotta be ready to go.

Texas Tech defensive coordinator David Gibbs' transcript from Monday

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Q. Coach Gibbs, how do you set the benchmark for your guys on a lopsided affair? Do you make small goals? How do you keep them motivated and keep playing hard?

COACH GIBBS: Good question. I'm going to give my generic answer. We're going to go back to the basics, the fundamentals and techniques and try to get better in practice every day. Obviously disappointing. They're really good, and we were not very good. So bad combination when you go play that team. But we didn't play very good. I've been saying that a lot this year. At some point we gotta grow up and start playing good on game day, because you can practice good. You can do all those fancy drills you want to, but if you don't put it on game film, it doesn't matter. These kids are amazing. You know, they've been through a lot throughout their careers and they continue to come to work every day and try to get better. And you know, I wish I could help them. I'm trying my dangedist and we'll just keep grinding and keep working.

Q. There's a difference between trying hard and trying soft. Do you think they tried too hard and got in their own way?

COACH GIBBS: No, I don't. I don't. I mean I think -- just you know, it's overwhelming when you're playing a run defense on a first -- third down of the game and they hand the ball off and nobody touches the guy for 80 yards. There's no excuse because you're gapped out and it just is what it is. I wish I had a reason why. But you know, they practice hard. They played hard. They didn't quit, which it would have been easy for them to do. There were teams during the game where watching the game you probably felt like they quit, but they didn't. I mean even the end of the game they're playing their butts off. So we gotta get better, and obviously we gotta do it fast.

Q. How do you change it?

COACH GIBBS: We're working right now. I don't know. Shoot, you know, we didn't go crazy. We didn't go blitz crazy like human nature wants you to. Like even the head coach wants you to when you get in those games and it's frustrating, everybody just go blitz, go blitz, go blitz. We did not. Maybe we should have. I don't know. But at least throughout the 70-some-odd plays we can watch and those 11 guys can know what they did right, know what they did wrong and you can move on and learn from those reps. They're valuable reps when you're trying to build a defense, you know. You know, just keep grinding. That's all I know to do. It's football. It's not that hard. You get off blocks, you make tackles. You cover the guy you're supposed to cover. But obviously we make it hard.

Q. They went 11 for 16 on third downs. Obviously that's not good, but that means that you got them into third-down situations 16 times. So do you have some new first and second-down sequences?

COACH GIBBS: We did at times. We just -- you know, two of their touchdown passes were on second, and one was second and 11, one was second and 13. And I called man coverage because I thought it was a play action pass, and it was on both of them. And both times we didn't cover the guy. So we're just, you know, we're learning. We didn't do anything good. I mean obviously third down was -- if you let them convert the first five third downs of the game, you're going to get your brains beat in. We can't do that. You know, we put so much pressure on our offense to try to match them and then the offense starts to panic. It's a bad combination. Our job is to fix it. You know, there's no easy way around it. You gotta play better, you gotta coach better. You know, we'll start again this afternoon and go back to work.

Q. Looking ahead to Iowa State, what do you see on their offense that poses you concern?

COACH GIBBS: First of all, I'm looking ahead to coaching my guys this afternoon and trying to get them better. You know, everybody is a challenge for us right now. So I keep saying we need to do our job and keep getting better at our techniques and our fundamentals and playing the calls that are called. You know, Iowa State, obviously the quarterback has played a lot of football. They got a bunch of big wide receivers, which as of right now we don't cover anybody. So I'm sure if you're looking at our film for the last couple of weeks, you're pretty much licking your chops ready to come play us. But our kids will be ready to play and hopefully we'll go out there and play better.

Q. Is there a part of the defense that you're more pleased with than the other, like the defensive line as opposed to the secondary?

COACH GIBBS: I'm really not. I mean obviously our secondary is not very good. Looks like the same secondary from a year ago to me when I watch last year's film. And I'm helping coach those guys. So you just gotta keep working and coaching them and do a better job. I wish I had a magic wand. I'd fix it. Trust me.

Q. ^ (indiscernible) That you mentioned a moment ago. (No microphone) misses the tackle.

COACH GIBBS: It is. You know, it's really -- I mean Baylor went -- they snapped the ball like within four seconds of the second down play, which our kids, oughta be good at getting lined up and we didn't get lined up until late. And it was on a few guys. It wasn't just one guy. Keenon looked bad, but trust me, there was four or five guys who didn't do their job. I mean it's pretty much if they hand the ball off on that play on third and four, they know they're about to beat your brains in. That's the bottom line. So I took that as an omen of what was to come. But our kids, you know, they kept fighting. I keep saying that. They did not quit, and I know y'all get tired of hearing it, but I don't know what else to tell you. Just keep coaching them, and sooner or later they'll get better.

Q. That was the first game Nigel played. I know he had those two P.I. penalties, but what was kind of your assessment of his first action this year?

COACH GIBBS: Looked like Nigel from last year to me, which -- he's actually practiced good the last couple of weeks, and he earned the right to go play again. And he played like the rest of them. Not very good. That's coaching. I mean he's in the same positions that he was a year ago, which is totally different scheme, totally different techniques and fundamentals. But things go fast, you revert back to your old habits. We do the same thing as people. So our job as coaches is to break those bad habits and get him to play better, because he's got the skill set to do it, obviously, but he played like the rest of them.

Q. What are his bad habits?

COACH GIBBS: What are his bad habits? Getting P.I.s, playing with his back to the ball all the time. He practices hard. He really does. I'm not going to beat Nigel up. Shoot, he was in there for a reason because the other guys were so bad. So at least he earned the right to get out there. And those wide receivers are really good. But it's the conference we play in.

Q. You started Thierry Nguema, he played a lot. Did he practice well last week?

COACH GIBBS: He did. He did. He actually played pretty good in the game. Probably should have played him more. Just the matchups and he's a smaller guy and Nigel is a smaller guy and you go against those bigger wide receivers. Same problem this week. Gotta try to protect them more with the calls which I said I was going to do when I first got here. And those last two teams, they don't let you protect your secondary very much, the way they can run the ball. But we gotta fix something. Obviously can't be bad at everything and right now we're bad at everything.

Q. (No microphone)?

COACH GIBBS: I don't think so. I really don't. I'm disappointed, not discouraged. I went with that last week. It didn't work. I'm going to try it again.

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Q. What did you see from D'Vonta Hinton (No. 34 pictured above)?

COACH GIBBS: Did good, man. I tell you what, he's going to be a good football player. I mean he looks like a little runt out there running around. But one thing he can do, he gets off the block and makes the tackle, which a lot to be said around here for that. So he's going to continue to get more reps and really this is the first game we put him out there and he actually got us excited so we kept him out there the rest of the game. But he's going to be a really good player here.

Q. Coach, do you think your players appreciate your candor in terms of how you approach things without sugarcoating it and telling them how it is?

COACH GIBBS: I don't know. If it's not working on Saturday afternoons it ain't working so maybe I need to change my approach, too, because these are new situations for me, too. So I'm learning as I go. Thank you all. Y'all have a great Monday.

Texas Tech offensive coordinator Eric Morris' transcript from Monday

Q. Eric, what did you think about your young receivers and how much they kind of played the second quarter, going on kind of how they played?

COACH MORRIS: Not bad. Zach Austin was probably the most consistent of all of them. Really proud of the way he played. Played really fast the whole game, blocked well actually. And the other guys were up and down. Giles got a ton of reps. He was up and down. Made some mistakes, we gotta get corrected. Same thing with Tony. He had some really good plays and then some really bad plays. Just the more they can play, it was great experience for them moving forward. You know, that's as fast of a team as we'll play. And so it's good for them to see that speed on that stage, in a place like Jerry's world, so hopefully it'll benefit them. But we need to get those other guys back, too.

Q. What about Devin? Chance he'll be back Saturday?

COACH MORRIS: Yeah. Yeah. Hopefully we'll get Devin back. So day to day, and we'll see how he responds this week. But he's a kid that we need. You know, he's a kid that's averaging I think over 20 yards a catch, so he's got that big play factor. So really happy with the way those young guys came in and competed for us.

Q. You guys didn't run the ball real well. Does that have to do more with the talent of their front or not blocking well? What was it do you think?

COACH MORRIS: Yeah, I thought they beat us up front. Yeah, no doubt. Went to it and then got down kind of in a hurry there which causes you sometimes as a play caller to probably not run the ball as much as we should have and just stick to your guns and try to get some different stuff what they were doing schematically. They slanted the front a ton and had some success with it and after DeAndre's fumble, we kind of got away from it, and that's kind of the spot in the game where they scored pretty fast on their first five possessions and we were kind of playing from behind there early. I thought it was good, we came out and they scored in a hurry, and then we marched down and scored on them and then going back and forth, Jakeem had a big drop that we can't afford. That's a touchdown if he catches that ball. So some stuff that definitely wasn't great on our part execution wise.

Q. There was this one screen pass that you guys played. I don't know which quarter it was in, but the line on the left side just stayed in their down position?

COACH MORRIS: Yeah.

Q. Way past the snap. Is that the way it's designed?

COACH MORRIS: Yeah. It's called freeze. So yeah, no doubt. We designed it that way. We had five guys out in front for two guys and we got a holding call. So it worked perfectly how we envisioned it, and we just didn't execute it. But yeah, that was a designed play.

Q. What do you see when you look at the Iowa State defense?

COACH MORRIS: Yeah. They're a team that's better than they were last year. You know, they got some guys back on the back end. Their defensive line is better than last year. When we played them they were kind of banged up last year. So we'll have to be better up front than what we were. We're not going to be able to move them. They do some stuff schematically try to take away the inside running game. So we'll have to get some movement up front on some double teams and you know, a little bit different scheme than we've seen. It's a total three down front 100 percent of the time, which we haven't seen one yet this year. So we'll do some different things, but we just gotta play fast and execute and getting some completions first down and keeping these drives alive.

Q. Playing fast is something you feel the last couple of games you haven't been able to do or didn't plan to do?

COACH MORRIS: No. We always want to play fast. You know, I think that this past week we played 102 snaps, I think, so that's pretty fast. But our run game has been a lot more effective as we get drives started this year and that's partly the way we design it and try to get people out of position doing that. But to do that you gotta be good and get first downs and get them going. And so it's kind of the same thing. You know, we had two early negative running plays and then after that, you know, all of them were over four yards. So it wasn't a total, you know, just debacle in the run game. We just didn't get to it as much as we would like to and partly is because we were playing from behind.

Q. Your first drive to start the third quarter, and ya'll really were kind of just clicking and moved it down real quick. What do you think the difference was between that and some of the other drives you had at the end?

COACH MORRIS: You know, I don't know. I wish we knew that answer and we'd try to do whatever we did that time. The guys seemed focused at halftime. We did come out and had a great drive and then the defense got some stops for us after that. That's something that we'll reiterate to the team is we gotta do a better job playing together. When they get stops we gotta go down and score and capitalize on it and vice versa. You know, when we score they gotta come up with some stops. So we're getting better. Our kids are fighting. And you know, still, this team is day and night from last year the way they're competing, the way they're approaching every single week. And so we just gotta win, pull out some of these victories.

Q. How is the squad feeling? Are they discouraged, disappointed?

COACH MORRIS: No. They're fine. They're anxious to play again, which is good to see. You want to see that in the guys, especially, you know, the guys, some of our leaders and stuff, I think they'll come out and be extremely motivated this week. They still have a lot of football to play, and we have a lot to prove as a team, and we put a lot of effort into this year. And so you'll see, you know, we'll have a great week of practice this week based on some of these guys. They've all been up here on their own watching film, asking questions. So we want to be good. And some of our young kids have to continue to step up in some key roles. A bunch of those wide outs are going to play this week and we gotta find a replacement for Justin Murphy whoever that is. And we'll see how it goes.

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Q. Is there a point in last year's Iowa State game that you saw Pat do something special and that was a point where you turned the corner?

COACH MORRIS: A little bit before that probably. I think in the Oklahoma game he did some phenomenal things down the field when some stuff broke down. But he hit Devin Lauderdale on a drag route there in that game that is a throw that I haven't seen many quarterbacks be able to move, moving to his right and threw it on the money, back side drag coming across the field. So yeah, I mean that was the first time, you know, you got a win and got some confidence going and you could kind of see the swagger coming out in him. But yeah, he's night and day. Same thing this past game. He made some plays that were unbelievable in that game, scrambling around and made some throws, one to Cameron Batson where he's going left and puts it on the money, and there's not many guys in the whole entire nation that can make that throw.

Q. Where is he percentage wise?

COACH MORRIS: He's good. You know, competing out there, he's a kid that, you know, once he gets those juices flowing, he wants to win so bad that, you know, I don't even think he was worried about it.

Q. Dylan Cantrell, Ian Sadler, are they back Saturday?

COACH MORRIS: Yeah. We'll just see how they continue to progress. You'd like for them to both be back.

Q. You played with some guys that were playing through injury, quarterback or whoever it might have been. What does that do to the teammates in the huddle or even the guys that are on the sideline?

COACH MORRIS: Yeah, I think it can motivate them for sure. I know Graham broke his finger in about six places one year and told them to tape it up and told coach he couldn't go in at center but he could do everything else. Yeah, I think it can rally the guys. Just that tough nature that they bring. Quarterbacks aren't known for being gritty and tough sometimes, so when they do show that, I think it helps those other guys kind of along the way.

Q. (No microphone). Where has he made the most progress, say in the last year or so?

COACH MORRIS: Yeah. I think just confidence, you know, he's a guy that came in and tore his ACL his senior year in high school, and that first year he was kind of just working back into playing shape. And I don't think he really believed that he belonged here. I think it took him about a year and a half here to, you know, I think it was a scrimmage this past spring where he caught a ton of balls and I think that was the first time I saw in his eyes after the game that he believed he could do it. And really, to tell you the truth, we didn't miss a beat. I thought he was as quick, made great reads, great catches. He didn't bat an eye and made some tough ones, made the right reads on a bunch of stuff. He was open a ton during the game. I mean he really stuck his foot in the ground and separated for some guys in man coverage, which was good so see. So yeah, I mean I was really proud of the way he did, and he's already come in my office and said that he's ready to go. And so we took a little bit out of the game plan for that position last week, just because, you know, without Ian there, you know, it wasn't as much experience there. And so he reiterated to me today he could do it all. But he had a great game.

Texas Tech running back DeAndre Washington's trancript from Monday

Q. What do you take from your performance?

DEANDRE WASHINGTON: I think they did a good job with the defensive scheme kind of holding the run game to a minimum. So kudos to them.

Q. Was that a product of what they were doing on the front or was it just because you guys were having to play from behind so much?

DEANDRE WASHINGTON: A little bit of both. They did a good job. Definitely got some good players up front. Kind of made a hole for us, and you know, getting down early kind of took us out of our game plan a little bit.

Q. What was that game plan?

DEANDRE WASHINGTON: I mean just, you know, score points but when you get down like that, you can't be as bad as you would like to be.

Q. What have you seen from Iowa State's front line?

DEANDRE WASHINGTON: You know, they're better from last year. You know, it's home coming, so I'm sure Coach Rhoads and the gang will definitely be coming in and try to sabotage that. I think we just gotta get back to our game plan. Play our ball, and everything should take care of itself.

Q. You had a chance to be on the all-time rushing list. What will that mean to you in your conference?

DEANDRE WASHINGTON: I mean it would be nice. It would be huge, especially being a running back at Texas Tech. But just want to get this win first.

Photo By Steven Chapman

Q. As one of the leaders on the team, how do you prevent a letdown after playing consecutive possible Top-25 teams to playing what is perceived to be a win on the schedule?

DEANDRE WASHINGTON: I mean we knew going in for that three-game stretch between Arkansas and finishing off with Baylor was going to be tough. Definitely not the outcome we wanted coming out of those three games. But I think we definitely could take a lot from those three games. Definitely have something to build off of. We feel like we could have won a few of those games. But like I said there's a lot of ball to be played, a lot of ball games, so starting this week we have the opportunity to get back on track and kind of gotta take it one week at a time and see what happens.

Q. Do you sense excitement with the team still or do you sense -- compared to where you were at this point in time last year?

DEANDRE WASHINGTON: Actually I love the morale that the team is at right now. I think early on we've definitely been battle tested. It's been huge to see how these guys respond, especially the young guys. It's easy to kind of put your head down and go into the sink. After losing two games especially we feel like we could have won those games, but like I said, there's a lot of ball left to be played and with the Big 12 you can see that anything can happen any given week. So I think the guys will be ready to go and we look forward to getting back on track this week.

Texas Tech linebacker Micah Awe's transcript from Monday

Q. As leader on the defense, how do you keep the team's confidence going after a performance like Saturday?

MICAH AWE: I mean just coming out Monday in practice and being excited because we were still playing a good. It's football, and you win some, you lose some. And honestly, we're past that. You know, we all know that Iowa State's next, and we can still win against Iowa State. We can't do anything about last week. So main thing is just to, for these younger guys to just know that we can still win and we're going to win this week.

Q. Coach Gibbs said that when things are going really fast that players have a tendency to go back to bad habits. Have you seen that as a leader on the defensive team, players do some bad things that they know they've been coached not to do?

MICAH AWE: I mean just naturally. You do it, I do it. Everyone does it every once in a while. But not as much as we used to. Coach Gibbs has that down to a minimum level, and I think our main thing is just to learn from it. I mean we took a lot from those past two games against TCU and Baylor, Top 5 offenses in the country, and relatively speaking, things should be better now. You know, Iowa State is going to be a great team, but TCU and Baylor really made us learn a lot, and that's the main thing, we gotta learn from it so we won't make the same mistakes.

Q. If you had to describe the Iowa State offense, how would you describe it?

MICAH AWE: They're solid. I mean they're solid, well coached offense. It's Big 12 football still. I mean anything can happen. I mean I think this is a great conference because of that reason; anything can happen. And we can't just go out there and think, oh, we're Texas Tech, we're going to beat Iowa State. We gotta put the work in starting today and all the way through Saturday.

Q. Micah, what happened from your view on the 79-yard touchdown run right at the start of the game?

MICAH AWE: Just a lot of mistakes at the wrong time, against the wrong people. Point blank. Baylor is a great offense, and you make a mistake against them, they'll make you pay with a 79-yard touchdown.

Photo By Steven Chapman

Q. What were you guys able to do on some first and second downs to force a bunch of third-down opportunities but not able to stop the run?

MICAH AWE: I mean third down has been an emphasis, you know, just in football in general. We gotta get them off on third down. We're a good defense but we're not that good yet and that's something we need to work on. And I think part of that's just growing up with Coach Gibbs and understanding the game better and just making a play sometimes. I mean sometimes you can call the perfect defense, but you still gotta make the play at the end of the day. I still gotta make the tackle; DB has still gotta knock the ball down and the D line has to still get off the blocks. So you can say all you want, but we just gotta play better defense.

Q. You've been through quite a few defensive coordinators. Is he the most candid and maybe honest with your all's performance of anybody in terms of how it is? 

MICAH AWE: Yeah. He is. I mean Coach Gibbs, you look at his resumé. He's been in the NFL. I mean sorry to say this, but this football game we play happens to be a business also. So he wants the best players out there that are going to do their job, and he lets us know. I mean I know I didn't do a great job last game. I'm disappointed, but I'm not discouraged, because at least we have Iowa State and the rest of the season to work on to get better on defense. But Coach Gibbs does a good job of doing that and just keeps you accountable, and I like it because I see a much more mature team. When a guy makes mistakes, he knows it and he tries to correct it on his own. No one else needs to talk to him. But it's just all part of growing up and we need to make less mistakes.

Q. When something goes wrong, like the 79-yard play, you got young guys on the back end, what do you pull those guys on the sidelines to say the secret or the key is playing harder or trying to play within themselves? What do you try and preach to them?

MICAH AWE: I mean the main thing, B. Jack and Pete Robertson, they are doing a great job of being vocal leaders out there. But sometimes you just gotta calm down and go back to your basics. I mean sometimes, or a lot of times if you try harder, you're going to make more mistakes. It's not about trying harder, especially on defense. I think a lot of people don't understand, going against these offenses in college nowadays, the worst thing you can do sometimes is try harder. The best thing you can do is just calm down and go back to your basics and go back to your fundamentals because they're going to make plays regardless of how well you think your defense is. So we just gotta calm down and regroup each and every play, whether the last play was a good play or a bad play. We just gotta regroup and continue to move on and be consistent because defense, I mean that's what defense is is consistency. The best defenses are consistent. They don't stop everyone, but they're most consistent and that's what we need to get to.

Q. With Iowa State, is that a different wide receiver? Is there something almost kind of deceptively good about their passing game that you have to play assignment football?

MICAH AWE: Iowa State, Richardson does a good job of spreading the ball out. I mean it's kind of like our offense. Just, oh, Jakeem is going to be the best receiver this week, or you know, Lauderdale. It's a different receiver every week depending on what the defense gives you. And we just gotta do a good job of containing their whole offense.

Q. You have a really mature perspective about take what we learned from TCU and Baylor. How wide is that mature perspective or is it something that you sort of try to sort of, pardon the word, cheerlead the younger players to do?

MICAH AWE: I mean it all starts from Coach Gibbs. That's kind of the mentality that he gives us. I mean, like I said, he's been in the NFL. You can tell he's been in the NFL because you watch film, no one is going to film thinking he's going to talk me up. You go into film thinking someone made a mistake here, was it me. And he's not bringing you down. He's just letting you understand that you made a mistake once, don't make it twice. Don't make it a third time. And it's just the mentality we have to have as defense. I mean everyone loves offense. You don't really -- most people who don't know a lot about football don't go to games for the defense, like I can't wait to see this defense. You go to the game saying I want to see a lot of scores -- a lot of points being scored. So as a defense, you just gotta know like they're recruiting great players out there, and the best thing you can do is when a play goes your way, make it. If I have a chance to have an interception, I need to get it because that might be a game changer at the end of the game. I mean we all know about that, turnovers are a huge thing to Coach Gibbs. You can be playing a horrible defensive game, but if you make four turnovers, I mean you can look the stats up, that's probably a win, you know. Just things like that, all of us are kind of just thinking that way because Coach Gibbs has just really led us to have that culture.

Q. So is the message this week calm down and play?

MICAH AWE: Yeah. I mean, like I said, Iowa State is a good team. They're going to get yards on us. They're going to score. But that's not for us to be sad. That's just for us to be, all right, we gotta minimize it as much as we can, as much as possible as we can. And as a linebacker on the team, I just need to communicate better. I think a lot of our past mistakes against TCU and Baylor was just communication. Part of it I can make excuses because they're going fast. It doesn't matter. I mean I gotta get the job done. That's something I learned, just communicate because I think we're a very good defense when we're all playing well together.


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