Notes and Quotes from Rick Neuheisel

Coach Neuheisel addressed the media this evening with a great deal of relief, and of course a lot of happiness as his Huskies are now 3-1 in the conference as they head to Tempe next weekend. Here are his comments in the press room after the game.

"Needless to say, it was an exciting game. Unfortunately, we were the major culprit as to why it was so exciting. We kept shooting ourselves in the foot and not executing to the level we were capable. Certainly, give credit to Arizona for some of that. It was unfortunate that the game had to be the kind of dramatic ending it resulted in. Given all that, I am very proud of the resiliency of the kids that play here at Washington and their willingness to keep fighting until the bitter end. I am very, very excited that we had a happy ending."

"I feel very privileged and fortunate to coach the kind of kids I get to coach here. I told them after the ball game, while we have to heal lots of things, bodies, offensives, defensives, penalties, and other things, we certainly have the makeup within ourselves to get that accomplished and become, hopefully, a team that can stay in the hunt. It certainly wasn't the kind of victory we had hoped for, but it's still a victory. There is still time to fix things that are broken and hopefully stay alive in the Pac-10 conference race."

On decision to play Cody Pickett: "I made it this morning. I based it on him. The reason Cody has practiced, the reason Cody participated at all, is because of Cody. He just felt like he could do it. I watched him in pregame and I thought he could be a guy we could go with. Certainly the way he started, it looked like it was going to be a great evening for him."

On performance of Pickett: "It was obvious that there were some great throws, certainly some vintage throws that we have come to expect from Cody. There were also some balls I know he wants back because they weren't anywhere close to what he is capable of doing. But, given everything, the pressure of the evening, the injury, no question some lingering doubt in his own mind about how well he was, I thought it was a sensational effort."

"It seemed like he had a real dose of misfortune in the second half of the evening. We had a punt fumbled because our guy ran into our own guy. It was "Keystone Cops" for a little while. As coaches and as players, I think we are all eager to fix that and hopefully keep that from plaguing us."

On throwing so much: "It wasn't the design to have him throw as much as we threw tonight. Unfortunately, we were hit with some injuries. Willie Hurst got hurt. Rich Alexis was nicked and was in and out of the lineup. I thought Chris Singleton did a nice job in there. Because of the way they played, it was the best way for us to move the ball. When you throw as often as we did, things like those interceptions can happen. It wasn't as though they were terrible throws. It was just that they did a nice job covering on the one in the endzone. He made an ill-advised throw on the screen pass in the first half and then the two that were tipped. Those things happen when you throw as often as we did tonight."

On Cody playing injured: "On the roughing the passer when he got hit hard, Cody and I developed a little signal for the game, that after he went to the ground, he would look over and give me a shake-off which means don't throw the next pass. I had told him that one time in my career I had gotten hit in the elbow and felt my arm go numb, so I didn't want a pass coming in on the very next play when I couldn't feel my arm, so I wanted him to be able to signal to me if he needed a little more time to make it feel good again – he never did, not one time. He gave me the thumbs up every time. It was a remarkable deal … keep throwing."

"I thought his arm was right when it needed to be. I think maybe on the deep balls, he felt that he didn't have everything that he needed. There were a couple that he wished he had again."

On last touchdown run by Pickett: "It was designed to be a throw. I am anxious to look at the tape because I thought he had Pat Reddick. There was a guy behind him, but I thought he could have stuck one in low and in front. But the rodeo kid wanted to bull-ride his way into the endzone. It was all that we could handle on the sideline."

On performance of Pat Reddick: "We are trying to develop some depth. And what happens with the substitutions is that guys get used to people coming in for one particular player. So what we have are three "x's" (split end): Reggie Williams, Wilbur Hooks and Pat Reddick. So Reddick wasn't getting a lot of playing time. We wanted to get him to backup our slot, Todd Elstrom. So that is where he fit in tonight. It becomes a management issue because we have so many talented receivers."

On "luck" in the fourth quarter: "I am not sure I am buying the luck deal. Certainly, there was good fortune tonight, but there was a lot of bad fortune tonight too. There was a comment made by somebody else in this conference about our luck running out. I can flip a coin twelve times and I guarantee you it is not going to come up heads every time. That would be luck. Winning twelve in a row was not the benefit of luck. It was the benefit of hard work and character. Certainly, it wasn't pretty all of the time, and we as a football team and as a coaching staff have to realize we have got to keep things from happening so we don't get unlucky and have it beat us. The bottom line is we are excited about being 3-1 in the conference and excited about being 5-1 on the season."

On the field-goal kicking: "We don't like missing field goals. Unfortunately, we have missed too many this year. I gave him credit, he came back. When he had to make the next one, he made it."

On falling behind 28-21 late in the game: "We have been there before. We have been in situations where we are staring at the abyss and while it may seem sometimes the crowd may get deflated, I really can honestly say that no one feels that way on the sidelines. Certainly, there are some shoulder pads smacking and some "let's go, let's get this thing done," but you don't ever see it in their eyes that this thing is over. And even a week ago, as demoralizing a loss as we had against UCLA, we fought. We went right down the field and scored at the end. It was too little, too late. But the hallmark of this team is that they play until the bitter end." Top Stories