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Quotes from Doc Holliday's Nov. 13 Press Conference

Marshall head coach Doc Holliday

Nov. 13, 2012

Opening Statement:

                “We have Houston coming in this weekend. They’ve lost a lot of players from last year, but if you look at them now, they still have a lot of athletes running around on both sides of the ball. David Piland is a guy that played for them prior to Case Keenum. He has a lot of experience and he can throw the football. It’s going to be important that we go out this week and we get better as a football team. We’re glad to be back home. We’re going to run our eight seniors out there on Saturday. We’re looking forward to coming out and playing hard for those eight guys.”

On Houston running back Charles Sims:

                “He’s a great player. He’s missed the last two games. He’s a great back, an NFL back. He was hurt in the East Carolina game and it looked pretty bad. He’s an excellent player. I hate to see anybody get hurt.”

On getting pressure on Houston quarterback David Piland:

                “He’s a quarterback that likes to throw on a rhythm. He’s really accurate with the quick-outs, bubble screens and those things that they do when he can stay in a rhythm. People that have put pressure on him have created issues for them. It’s going to be important that we try to get that done. We have to try to get him out of that rhythm and force him to hang on to the ball a little bit.”

On this being the same scenario from last year when Marshall was 4-6 heading into its last two games:

                “I think our kids understand what is at stake. They have to go play extremely well. It is the same scenario we had a Memphis a year ago too. We found a way to go win last year and that is what this team has to go do. We have eight seniors walking out there on Saturday and about four of them will have a uniform on. Aaron Dobson has issues and will probably be questionable. Andre Snipes-Booker has a little bit of an issue. Devin Arrington is a little banged up. So, three of those may not even be dressed.”



On Cameron Dees getting his first start with Chris Jasperse by his side:

                “It’s critical. Dees had some issues going in too. We had a banged up group in there that had to play. They had no choice. This week, I think we’ll be a little healthier and that should help us.”

On Houston possibly copying UAB’s plan to face to Marshall:

                “Well, this is a copy-cat business. They [Houston] have the ability to go three down. There’s no doubt that we know if that happens we have to be able to handle it. And we will. We’ll be fine there. They have not shown that up to this point, but can they? Absolutely.”



On Houston being a gambling defense:

                “In the score-zone and red-zone, the answer is yes. They bring a very heavy blitz in the score-zone and red-zone, not so much out in the regular part of the field.

On Houston committing turnovers, but forcing them as well:

                “They have. Hopefully, they won’t force any on defense and we can force some on their offense. They have turned the ball over, but have done a great job at creating turnovers too.”

On back-ups coming in and playing a big role:

                “I think we created four turnovers. Offensively you don’t turn the ball over. As a coach, you would think plus three or four in the turnovers you would be in good shape. That has to continue, but we have to continue to score points too.”

On scoring on the first drive on the game:

                “Number one, you have the opportunity to score. And two, we’ve been able to change the field position with the punt. Offensively, if we can get a couple first-downs and move it down the field, we can punt the football and make them start the drive minus 20. The kicking game is all about changing field position, whether you do it by punting the ball or kicking it off. We can take the ball down the field and score, which is something we have to do a better job at doing or you can change the field position with your punt team which is something I’ve had faith in all year. That’s the thought behind what we’ve done as far as taking the ball is concerned. The weather or wind factor would also play a part in what we would decide to do on kicking it away or receiving.”

On Houston’s defense:

                “He’s a good player. The one corner that they lost (D.J. Hayden) was to a crazy injury. The kid fortunately came through it, but I’ve never heard of that. He’s a really good player and it was sad to see a kid get hurt like that. When you watch Houston on tape their just like any Houston team. They have guys that can run, they have linebackers that can go, they have secondary guys that can cover and they’re very athletic on both sides of the ball.

On Marshall’s special teams. Receiving/Kicking:

                “We had a couple of kickoff returns that came out well last Saturday. We’re only a yard difference from being in the top three in the conference in kickoff returns. Just a yard from being one of the top teams in Conference USA on kickoff returns. That obviously isn’t good enough. We want to be better at that. You play Rice and that kicker puts you six yards deep in the end zone. Then Saturday, UAB did a good job at getting the ball three or four yards deep in the end zone. If you get a decent hang-time, it is hard to get that thing. Well if you kick that thing in the end zone, it’s going to come out to the 25-yard line. So you’re better off taking a 25-yard return and taking over from there on offense. There is a lot of thought going into that deal, because the field position has changed. Andre Snipes-Booker has had some issues with health. But that’s no excuse…we have to get better.

On changing the tempo against Houston:

                “We need to play more up-tempo all the time. When you have guys rushing three down, you have to be able to run the football. You have to get them out of that. During the second half of the UAB game, we said we were going to just get back in tempo. When you drop eight there are very few seams to stick the ball into. We had some great throws and great catches. We just have to get back to doing that. Regardless of what they do, we have to do what we do.”