Head Coach Turner Gill Meets with Media Following Practice

Oct. 19, 2011

LAWRENCE, Kan. – Kansas head coach Turner Gill met with members of the media following the Jayhawks’ Wednesday practice at Memorial Stadium. Below is a transcript of Coach Gill’s interview:

Kansas Head Coach Turner Gill

On if the team has rallied together this week:
“I think our players are getting used to each other and starting to feel good about where we’re at and what we’re doing. As a team, we’re really taking ownership a lot more. They’re talking more with their teammates; talking more to us as coaches. I think there’s some excitement – obviously it’s the week of the Kansas State game – but I think it’s also where our team is starting to gel. We just have to keep rolling.”

On if this game is more important:
“Every game is important to our fanbase. The one next week is going to be important too. We’re just trying to make sure we have a great opportunity to win every single football game. Every game is important to all of us and obviously this one here is a little more so because of the rivalry in state. This one has a little more taste to it than the other ones, but it’s important because it’s the next one.”

On if he has tried to get the team to refocus entering the second half of the year:
“I kind of break (the season) down into four quarters. We have the first three ballgames is the first quarter, so now we’ve just finished the second quarter, being halfway through. We try to play one game at a time, but it’s a way to break things down to see where you’re at. That way you can evaluate where you’re at with what you’re trying to get accomplished and those kinds of things. That’s kind of what we talk about as a staff and talk to the players.”

On the status of center Jeremiah Hatch:
“It’ll probably be game day (before a decision is made). He was a little bit better today as far as that goes, but we’ll just have to wait and see how he feels on game day. Our medical staff is going to make the final decision, to say if he’s ready to play. We just have to take it one day at a time.”

On if he has a sense of how important the K-State game is to Jeremiah Hatch:
“Oh, yeah; I know it’s important to him. Your senior year, you want to play in every single football game. Obviously your health is more important, so the doctors are going to watch that. I know he understands that too. We’re going to take every precaution. I know he wants to play and we’re going to do everything we can to get him to play. But the doctors are going to make that decision.”

On the status of linebacker Huldon Tharp:
“He’s not quite the same as (Jeremiah) Hatch, but in a different way. We’re just trying to see where he’s going to be as far as his health. He just got banged up a little bit, but hopefully tomorrow we’ll have a better idea of his availability.”