LB Cort Dennison
On Syracuse's start and if the defense got worried: "We still kept to our game plan. We knew we had plenty of time left in the game. We didn't get down on ourselves and we kept our confidence high. We did get down 10-0 early and I missed a tackle – I take full responsibility for it – but we came back and that's what a champion does. You can't win a game in the first quarter, so we did a great job of coming back.
"That kind of stuff happens. It's football and you have to be able to bounce back. I thought we did a good job of bouncing back and we won the game and that's all that matters at the end of the day."
On his fumble recovery: "I've been telling the coaches to put me in at running back. I thought it was fumble, but oh well. We won the game and that's all I care about."
On the message from Nick Holt when the team got down: "(Holt said) ‘Keep your head up, we've got a lot of game left' so he just told us ‘we have three more quarters and keep holding and pushing and we'll be fine'."
On the mentality of the team: "We were pissed off, but we were fine. We knew we were a better team than we showed at the start of the game and we finally snapped into it and we showed people the defense we can be."
On if that shows growth: "I really think it's a sign of growth. Maybe last year we would have kept our heads down and dwelled on the negatives and this year we get past the negatives, we realize we have a ton of game left and we turn them into a positive. I don't think we made the same mistakes the rest of the game that we made in the first quarter. I'm really proud of the guys because we stuck to the gameplan and we got the win."
On what was discussed at halftime: "Just that we had two more quarters left, 30 more minutes of football, and there's no reason to get down. If we executed offensively and defensively, we should have a chance to run away with this game and that's just what we did."
CB Desmond Trufant
On getting momentum from the turnovers: "Getting the fumble instead of a field goal really killed Syracuse going into the second-half. It was great making lot of plays and having this feeling."
On if they got down after their slow start: "It's a game. There's going to be penalties and mistakes so you just have to play through it regardless of what happens. We never got our heads down and we knew we were going to be able to bounce back because we believe in the system."
On blitzing: "I came a couple of times. I should have had two (sacks), but coach Holt likes to blitz the corners a lot so it's cool. Coach Holt is just a ‘pressure' coach and whether it's linebacker, safety or corner we have to get there."
On him being more involved: "We played a lot of man-coverage this week and they threw my way a lot this week so I just had to make a play when I had the opportunity."
LB Mason Foster
On the competitiveness and intensity level of the team: "You've got to compete everyday in practice because there's somebody who can step into your spot easily, linebackers, myself, Cort (Dennison), everybody knows that if you don't practice as hard as you can and practice the way you should, somebody else will be starting on Saturday. That's what the biggest thing is and I feel like we just play as a group and they hold you to a pretty high standard so if you don't play how you should play they're going to find somebody else."
On his sack: "I think it's a big thing but that comes from stopping the run, getting them in 3rd-and-long and then we have great schemes to put pressure on the quarterback so it's one of those things where you confuse them with different looks and somebody's going to come free if you do your job. So that sack goes to the d-line and the whole defense for everybody doing their job, covering well so that sack goes to the whole defense."
On blitzing a lot: "We're going to bring pressure always if it's Cort, the corners, we're going to bring pressure when the time is right and when it's not we're just going to play solid defense and get them off the field."
On finally getting home: "It felt great, especially getting ball out. I pride myself on getting the ball out and it was a big play for our defense and we just gotta do that more and more."
On big plays energizing the defense: "I gets us all hyped because we all live close together, we all hang out on the weekends and when one of your brothers is doing good it makes you feel good and it makes you want to do better. Jermaine's one of my good friends, DA (Devin Aguilar) is one of my good friends, and Jake, when they make big plays it makes us want to make big plays and we just keep feeding of each other like that and it keeps energy going and it keeps us all going at a high level."
On being down 10-0: "We knew we were going to be alright we just had to keep working, cut down on little mistakes, get the jitters out, you still get jitters out there no matter how old you are and that's what it came down to and I knew we were going to make it happen. We just kept playing through it like we always have and we knew we'd be successful."
WR Jermaine Kearse
On his chemistry with Jake: "We just caught a rhythm and once we caught a rhythm we just went with that and it definitely helped out, I definitely had some good blocks out there and the consistent drives we had was able to have all those good things happen."
On improving his YAC: "It was more of I put it on myself, I didn't have any talk with Coach Sark about it. It was definitely something I felt that I wanted to work on and I just worked hard on it in the offseason."
On his 57-yard TD reception: "We just wanted to come off strong. We knew that we were up, but not by that much so we had to just start all over, the score was 0-0 to us so we felt we just go out and make a play."
On career day: "It feels good. Definitely want to get better. I'm not complacent with it, I want to have bigger days, but it'll do for now."
WR Devin Aguilar
On feeding off Kearse and Polk: "Me and Jermaine always feed off each other and if it's not to me it's to him or the other receivers and basically just keep pushing each other and keep the offense flowing and that gets the run game going."
On the routes that Syracuse D gave them: "They gave us a good look. And basically it was open in the flat over there and all Jermaine had to do was cut off one block and he was outta there so the flat was open."
On import of running game: "It's real important. It's visa versa, passing game started we get the running game started and it's the opposite effect. We always talk in the huddle we gotta get you started Chris, cause Chris is a helluva back and we just have to get him started and then that's how everything starts flowing."
On getting a win under their belt: "It feels good, it's just motivation into next week."
On the atmosphere he's expecting next week: "It's going to be real crazy going against a ranked opponent, Nebraska who's a great team. Basically we got to start this week, game plan and get ready for next week."
On staying focused after last week: "Our obligation is just we can't lose at home and that's our mindset and basically we came in here with a lot of energy and knew we could win."
On handling Nebraska's defense: "Basically every week, game-plan, study the defense, tendencies, everything and it'll all fall into place."
S Nate Williams
On passing around ‘inspirational' material said by Syracuse: "It was actually Coach Sark at our Wednesday team meeting. Coach Sark…I mean I hadn't heard anything about it, I'm sure not a lot of other guys had, Coach Sark was the one who addressed our team with it and he told us what they had said and obviously it made him a little upset and I think the whole game we were a little conscious of it. Those guys they really didn't respect us coming into the game and we made them respect us. That was our mindset during the whole game."
On playing to expectations in the last three quarters: "As a team we played really well, we played really hard late into the game and everything, but there's still a couple of mistakes here and there that we can clean up by watching film and with our practice reps but we still have a little work to do eventhough we played hard, and we're going to get all that corrected this week."
On atmosphere along the sideline when down 10-0: "I think naturally a couple of guys hang their heads but the vets that are here and the vets that are playing, we know that 10 points is easy, we can easily come back we just have to keep on getting turnovers and put the offense with great field position. Our offense is really good, really strong so personally I wasn't even worried about a 10 point lead."
On the difference between playing in front of home crowd and on the road: "When I'm out there, when they hike the ball I don't hear anything. It weird because I know that it's loud presnap, it's loud and it's rocking but as soon as they hike the ball it's like I don't hear any of that but if Trufant's yelling at me ‘cross cross cross' or if Cort's yelling at me ‘puller puller' that's really all I can hear out there. I'm sure it helps our offense a lot but for me I don't even hear the noise.
On the noise feeding adrenaline: "Obviously it does. I just want them to get louder and louder and louder because I know that it messes the offense up, but the moment that it's snapped I don't hear any of that noise, I'm just into it."
K Erik Folk
Kicking in general today: "Could have been a lot better. Kickoffs weren't really where they needed to be. That kick where I recovered the fumble, that kick was supposed to be deep left and I hit it kinda to the right and it's kinda more redemption for the fumble, but other than that I need to get more distance and hangtime on the kickoffs."
On success of place kicks: "Cody's done a great job holding, Brendon's done a perfect job snapping so far. As long as those remain perfect, I should make every one."
On fumble recovery: "On kickoffs, I have to be the safety so I hang about 10 yards behind everyone else. I just saw the ball come out and just jumped on it."
On the contact: "We sometimes will do the turnover circuits with the defense on Wednesdays and there's a couple there that the ball gets knocked free and you have to jump on it."
On the momentum swing after the turnover: "That play gave us a lot of momentum and we ended up getting 7 points off of it so it was really good and helped us a lot. Kinda kept rolling after that."
On issues with kickoffs: "I'm still working on my steps. They were fine during camp but I'm going out there and thinking about it and it's kind of effecting my kickoffs. If I just go out there and don't think about it and just kick, it'll be a lot better."
On the difference between mindset when placekicking and kickoffs: "I think it's more because I have to place the ball preferably outside the numbers. I'm thinking about placing it and giving our team the best chance to tackle the returner. If we can kick it outside the numbers and really force the return to be in a third of the field that helps our coverage team because they don't have as much to cover."
Player Quotes - Syracuse
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