Rick Neuheisel Post Game Quotes - Wyoming

Rick Neuheisel addressed the media following the 38-7 victory over the Wyoming Cowboys. He was happy about some things but more often than not he dwelled on the fumbles (five) that struck his rushing offense. "We'll fix that. It's coaching – and I take responsibility," said Neuheisel.

General Comments: "There are a lot of things to be excited about. For much of the evening our defense played really well. We certainly showed that we have great athletes on the offensive side of the ball. Anytime you don't punt one time you'll be excited about how you move the ball. BUT, I think we can be so much better. I'm eager to go about doing the work that will make us a more complete team. A team that can rely on ourselves not to make those critical mistakes as the conference race draws near."

"I think we need to practice better and the coaching staff and I will work diligently to make sure that when we get to game day we're not going to shoot ourselves in the foot."

"Wyoming never backed down and never blinked. They played hard and they were ready to play."

"Next week we play Idaho and that will be a big game for us as we prepare for the conference games. They (Idaho) had a big win today so they'll be ready for us. Obviously they can score a lot of points and it'll be a challenge for our defense"

On the fumbles: "It's really a concern. It's not the first time it's happened. It seems like it's happening at the worst possible places. We've just thrown away points, at least three scoring opportunities last week. This week, easily five and we mismanaged the clock at the end of the first half. There are some things we need to fix so that they don't become nightmares when we get into conference play."

End of the first half: "We were faced with a 3rd and 13 and we spoke to Cody to make sure that we new we had to get a first down. On the back side we had a couple of curls and we ended up a little short of the first down. Cody explained to me that he thought they were going to blitz on that side, and when they didn't, he went backside and threw a little low to Pat Reddick. He had to go down on the ground to catch it and ended up a yard short with a fourth down and not enough time to get the field goal unit onto the field. So he called a fourth down play and hit it but the clock got away from us before we could get the ball on the ground or throw for a touchdown. We can fix that. That wasn't very good."

On Cody Pickett: Cody was terrific. Other than the fumble on the option he played really well. He forced a couple to Reggie in the red zone but he's getting better. I told him that for us to be a great team he has to become a great player. He already is a great talent, so now he has to become a great manager. To know when to take the shots and to know NOT when to take them. There were at least 10 plays tonight where the play didn't work, but Cody MADE it work. He just created and we have some talented guys that made plays. We just have to hone it more and become more of a machine on offense instead of something that goes haywire. I don't want to lose the big plays but I don't want to rely on them as we get into conference play."

Wyoming's success early: "They are a spread offense so your end has to squeeze. There are certain reads the defense must make. You can't just come up the field because they are in an open formation and they are showing pass. We had some young players get up the field and create seams on the back side. We got it corrected for the most part other than that one drive."

On being one dimensional on offense: "I always go into a game hoping that we'll be able to do both (run and pass) with balance but Keith (Gilbertson) has a great view from where he sits and he felt that things were there all night. We took what they gave us. If you are getting 500 yards you are still doing something right. Had we not fumbled tonight I think we'd all be sitting here thinking it was a pretty good night of offense." Washington had 436 passing yards and 113 on the ground, and fumbled the ball five times.

On going for it on fourth and one: "Early in a game that probably isn't a percentage move but I wanted them to know that we had a chance to score on the opening drive and that it was as important to me as it was to them."

Playing time for younger players: "You always want to play more players. You lament fumbles because you know that it costs you another 5-6 minutes that you could've gotten someone else into the game, but we were able to get as many young players into the game as we could. Hopefully we'll have more opportunities as the season progresses."

On starting fast: "We did that. We drove and scored and held them to three and out. Unfortunately then we turned it over. It doesn't matter whether they are in the first half or second half, they stall you out. We had numerous opportunities to make the scoreboard look like a slot machine and we just didn't do it. That's coaching – I take responsibility."

On Rich Alexis: "I think Rich is like all of our players. He wants to be great and I know he as well as us are going to want to fix things. Rich is a very good player. If we hang onto the ball we will be tough to handle. There are fumbles that occur even when you do everything fundamentally correct, but in this game too often it was just lack of concentration or lack of execution. We can fix those."

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