On the win: "After three weeks, I am pretty proud of these guys. All three games are a little bit of a unique challenge. O think we showed good energy and focus. We started fast for the most part, played off each other -- offense and defense -- got some things on special teams; I think we learned some things about our team -- some good things and some things we still need to clean up. I thought our defense did a great job tonight creating turnovers and really holding those guys, run yardage-wise, to what we did. I am tell you that quarterback is hard to tackle. It is a really good run offense. Part of their run is when he is going to throw the ball and it's not there, so he gets a lot of yardage scrambling. We saw a few times he did that tonight. Overall I thought those guys tackled well and contained him well. It was good to get Chico McClatcher the ball in space. He's a playmaker for us. It seems like each game somebody else is making things happen at the skill position so that is all good. I am excited to move on to league play."
On things the coaches learned about the team: "I don't wan to get into the specifics. There are some things that we need to clean up because I don't want to just throw it out there. I think these guys are pretty focused and they have worked hard. I have said it each week -- I am really pleased with those guys since the winter time. They have really focused and worked hard. They pay attention to what we are trying to get done, so all of those are really good things. Like I said, I think there are some things that we have learned that we still have got to get cleaned up and get better at. Those are some things we will put the film on and try to figure out."
On maintaining the team focus even when they are out to a big early lead: "I think they have for the most part. The third quarter was the most frustrating because our plan was to hold the ball, milk the clock and snap it late. That is fine, be we better execute. One time in the third quarter we went backwards and that was frustrating. We had some penalties that were a little bit uncharacteristic. A couple of sloppy ones on the offensive line that, again, we will need to look at the tape to see what that was all about. I know we got a holding call on a play we should never get a holding call when there's no need to hold at all so that was frustrating. We get a hands to the face on the defense that moves the chains again. Those are the types of things that will get us when we play close games. I think in the first two games we were really pretty good with some of that stuff. You get a team that makes your possessions count, which they really did in the second half; I think that kind of hurts a little bit. I think our defense did a good job. Our offense, certainly that one drive wasn't good."
On getting into conference play: "We have seen this for a while. We have been staring at this schedule for a long time, going 'okay, we ahve our first three games, which have their own unique challenges, but then we start our league in a tough way'. To go to Arizona in a night game to open the league, that is going to be a challenge, then we go home in a short week against Stanford and then go to Eugene. We will find out, we will find out quickly what we have, but it is the next step in the progression we need to go and we have been paying attention to it for a long time. The time is now."
On Greg Gaines and the entire defensive line: “Those three guys, I think there might be more than three – Greg, Vita (Vea) and Elijah (Qualls) – they’re big guys, but they’re very explosive. They’re hard to block, you can ask our offensive guys, so whoever gets ‘singled’ usually gets some ‘knock off’ and the plan is for to take on double teams and let those linebackers make the plays, but they were doing a good job of getting ‘knock off ‘ and ended up in the backfield and Greg’s done a great job again, he’s played at a high level for most of the season.”
On the gameplan vs. PSU QB Alex Kuresa: “We were very careful to try and keep him in the pocket, so we were trying to collapse the pocket and not create running lanes. He spun out a couple of different times and that hurt us, but it wasn’t just ‘sick’em. get to the quarterback’, it was, as a group, push and squeeze on him and try to keep him in there. I thought for the most part they did a good job. Like I said, he’s elusive and you’re not going to keep him in there all night, but when he did escape, I thought our guys rallied fairly well to contain him.”
On PSU getting close to blocking punts: “I think once or twice, again I hate to say it until I watch the tape, but we may have had a wrong adjustment and I think they were also gambling and bringing seven guys to one side and we need to do something out the other side if they want to bring seven guys to one side we need to run the ball the other way. We’ll take a look at that punt team and figure out what we need to do to help them out.”
On the running game: “I don’t know. I need to look at it again. I thought it got going at times, but I still don’t think it’s necessarily where it needs to be. We need to put that tape on and see what we’re thinking, but, general impression, I think we need to do a little more. I think our yardage was pretty good, but I still think we could be a little more physical and come off the ball a little bit better.”
On Nick Harris and Andrew Kirkland subbing early: “We’re always trying create some competition, build depth, all of those things. That’s what we’re trying to do. We’re trying to get guys to play better and build depth.”