Oct. 9, 2012
Press Conference Video
"Our team this week is going to focus on ourselves and getting better as a football team. We have some guys that we need to get healthy. We have to focus the team on becoming better fundamentally and technique-wise. We'll focus on ourselves this week and start back Sunday for our preparation for Southern Miss."
On the evaluation of team up to bye week:
"My standards and expectations are extremely high. For us to get where we want to go we have to be able to beat teams like Tulsa that are is of the better teams in our league. It has to happen. It didn't happen and it is disappointing, but we have to get back to work and get better. Our goal has always been to win the conference championship. To be able to do that we have to be able to line up against teams like Tulsa and find a way to make plays to beat them. That didn't happen. We have to get better so that it does happen in the future."
On the tone of practice during the bye week:
"We'll be physical. They need to get away from us for a couple days. We've gone hard from early August and we had six straight weeks of them not getting much time off. Sunday and Monday was theirs and they'll be back to work today. We'll lift them and run them today. We'll be physical Thursday and Friday. It's just important that we get some guys healthy. We've had some guys banged up. It's hard to get better when you don't practice. We have a lot of guys out there playing, but didn't practice. You look out there during the week and there are a lot of red jerseys. Those guys aren't tackling and doing things you have to do to become better football players. We have to be smart as coaches this week so when we line up on Sunday and start that week of game preparation, those guys are able to tackle and go do the things we have to do to become a better team."
On injuries following Tulsa game:
"We have some guys, for example [Chris] Jasperse has been a boot for about four weeks and he goes out and plays 90 plays. That's not good. We are going through the same thing with Garrett Scott. Our two corners have been in red jerseys for three weeks. They haven't been able to go through tackling drills and things they need to do to become better players. It's not just us. This is happening all over the country. Six weeks into your season you're going to have some guys banged up. We have to get some guys back and we will. By this time Sunday don't foresee anybody that won't be able to go out there and practice. We have to get them ready to go play."
On whether or not Marshall's players are fatigued:
"I don't think we were a fatigued football team. I think our kids went out there and played hard. We've played extremely hard in every game we've played. I don't think our condition or fatigue has been an issue. When you play good teams, there are probably about 20 plays that if we make a play we have a chance to win that football game. I talk all the time to my team and to you all (the media) about competitive excellence. When your number gets called you have to go out there and make a play. You practice those types of plays in practice and they are more comfortable when they see that situation in the game. We just have to focus on getting better fundamentally and technique-wise so when it does happen again we can line up and make the plays that we didn't the other night."
On the defense:
"We're not where we want to be. I've talked all along that our defense is nowhere near where we want it to be. I think some guys have become better. We have to continue this week and next week to build on the progress that our players have made. We have to go out there every day and get better. Are we there yet? No, but we have to continue to work hard to get there. I think the two safeties are starting to feel comfortable. They've played pretty solid. I think D.J. Hunter is starting to step up and make some plays. The defensive front has played better. Again, as a group we are not nearly where we want to be, but I think they've all made some progress."
On getting better at tackling with players who are held out of contact during the week:
"It's hard. You get better by practicing. You have to go out, be physical and do some live tackling. When you're standing out there in red jerseys tagging off all the time you can't get better at tackling. If you are out in the red jersey and you can't work on tackling, fundamentals and techniques then you will regress as a player. That's why it's so important that we get these guys back this week and move ahead. We have to start getting better and I think we will."
On D.J. Hunter:
"D.J. is going to be a really good football player. He's been out of football for a couple years. He's starting to feel comfortable there and he's showing it by the number of plays he's beginning to make. He'll be fine. D.J. is going to be good."
On the frustration level of the players:
"They are. These kids have gone out and done everything we've asked them to do. They've played extremely hard and they've came up short in those games. For us to get where we all want to go we have to find a way to win those games like that against good teams. We will. They're frustrated because they care. I'd be really concerned if they we not frustrated. That's why I've said all along that I like this football team. They care, it's important to them, they work extremely hard to prepare to go out there and win. That's why I like them. They're good kids that play extremely hard. As long as they keep doing what they're doing, good things are going to happen for them. There's no doubt about that."
On playing well late in the schedule the last two seasons:
"The kids have stayed the course. They haven't flinched. If they keep working how they're working then good things are going to happen for them. That's not going to change. We're going to keep doing what we are doing. We're going to work extremely hard and give it everything we have. When that happens they will be fine."
On lack of defensive takeaways:
"That's what we talk about; when your number is called you make a play. There were a couple opportunities Saturday and they have to go make the play. You work all the time on ball drills and strip drills. That's one thing we have to do a better job of. We have to do a better job at not turning it over and a better job at creating turnovers ourselves. We're not getting them and we're giving them up. We have to correct both of those issues to move forward and become a better football team."