Postgame quotes Kansas-Colorado football

Nov. 6, 2010

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Postgame Quotes

Kansas 52, Colorado 45

November 6, 2010

Lawrence, Kan. (Memorial Stadium)

Kansas Head Coach Turner Gill:

Opening Statement

“I first want to thank god. I’m so proud of these players; they showed a lot of character. It means a lot for our football program. It think it also means a lot for our home and our fans and all of the people who came out. I’m proud and it means a lot.”

On overcoming the halftime deficit

“At halftime we just talked about being relentless. That was our word of the week. We’ve got to continue playing the game of football. We’ve got to continue to win. We’ve got to keep playing, keep executing and you’ve got to keep bringing intensity. And I think that’s what happened.”

On the turning point of the game

“I think it was the onside kick. We were 21 points behind at that time and once we got that, that gave us some momentum and I really, really thought we’d have a great chance to win if we got that opportunity. And when we did, everything took care of itself.”

On the performance of quarterback Quinn Mecham

“I’m proud of him. I’m proud of the whole offense, the defense – everybody. Quinn did a great job managing the game. It was great to see him come back after those picks and to see the offense play through the game and still make plays. I think he showed his resiliency.”

On the forced turnovers

“You just keep on doing those things in practice. You keep on doing them in a game, you keep emphasizing them and you keep playing. We just talked about those guys playing with a vicious attack at the ball, running from the ball carrier with your feet, we talk about that all the time, and they put it in play on game day. If you keep doing those things then the defeats will eventually happen for you.”

On the players’ postgame reactions

“We just said we loved each other. We just all hugged each other. We’re going to continue to move on a little bit and yell and scream and continue to celebrate. This is a great win for our program, and a great win for our players. I’m just so proud of them – they came to play. This is a great group of guys to be around and we’re going to continue on in this direction next week.”

Senior wide receiver Johnathan Wilson:

On the game:

“I’m still in shock. It was a great game and I really enjoyed myself.”

On thoughts when KU was down 45-17:

“I was just down. The Colorado guys were talking trash to us saying `look at the scoreboard’ and I really had no response. All of a sudden we started making plays and playing our game and they shut up real quick.”

On when he thought they were going to win:

“As soon as I scored that touchdown, I felt like we were going to come back and win. We got that fumble recovery and I scored that touchdown and I felt the energy come back to the team.”

Junior linebacker Steven Johnson:

On holding on to the win:

“Today I came into this game thinking `we’ve lost so many in a row really bad’. I was watching the Georgia Tech game a couple of days ago and they had a guy say that we were just awful. After that I thought `you know, we have four more opportunities to be able to win six games and go to a bowl game’. I’m not worried about next week but I wanted to be able to take control of this game.

On rallying from a 28-point deficit:

I’m just proud of my teammates for showing relentlessness and going out and fighting until the end. Offense, defense and special teams all played together. Next week we’re going to have to do the same thing against Nebraska and I feel like this team right now is ready to shock the world. I’m pretty sure a lot of people have already counted us out but we stick together as a team and we’re ready to take on anybody.”

On better atmosphere on the sideline:

“We were just practicing so hard for three or four weeks and nothing has really been paying off in the game. Even the penalties I thought were unbelievable at times and something needed to go our way. We just kept fighting and we were prepared and ready to come out and win this game. I’m looking forward to practice on Tuesday so we can get ready for next weeks game against Nebraska.”

Freshman running back James Sims:

On his four-touchdown day:

“It felt great. I would just like to thank my offensive line. They blocked for me, and they believed in me and I believed in them.”

On when the team started believing that they could come back:

“We figured that once we got the onside kick, and brought it down and scored it and the defensive got that pick, we felt like we were in the game right then and there.”

On his game-winning touchdown:

“We’ve worked on that play three or four times at the end of every practice. Coach (Mitchell) just said to hit it A-gap and the hole will be there. I just listened to what he told me and it was there.”

On sticking with the running game in the second half:

(Offensive Coordinator) Coach (Chuck) Long just grabbed us together (at halftime) and let us know some things going on with the defense and some of the shifting they were doing. Our offensive line just took advantage of that and opened up some holes for us.”

On if he has ever been a part of a comeback like that:

“No I haven’t. I don’t want to have to be in that situation again, having to come back like that.”

Colorado Head Coach Dan Hawkins:

On his team losing a 28-point lead

“We’ve got to know what it’s like to be in the lead and we have to learn how to finish. When you’re ahead like that you’ve got to know how to stop them and continue to do what you’re doing. When you don’t, you continue to give the other team momentum.”

On what he told his team as KU cut its lead in half

“I just told them relax. We’re up by 14, we’re the team that’s ahead and we’ve got the momentum so we’re still in control here.”

On whether his team thought it had the game won at half time

“I don’t know, that wasn’t my message, but that can be a problem. Again, we’re just learning how to handle these situations.”

On whether KU’s onside kick in the fourth quarter caught the Buffaloes by surprise

“A little bit, but we kind of thought that they might attempt it. We were ready for it and they did a good job executing it.”

Junior Running Back Rodney Stewart:

On the fourth quarter:

“They did a good job. They’re used to being down, so for them to score a touchdown when they’re down by 30 and still get excited, that’s great for them. We’ve never been up by as much as we were up. We thought that we had the game won, and then we let them have things that they shouldn’t have gotten.”

On the attitude at halftime:

“We thought the game was over. We thought we would come out and score another touchdown. We thought they were going to give up but they never did.”

On the player’s attitude after the momentum shift:

“We’ve seen it happen a couple of times when teams have come back to beat us in the fourth quarter and we just need to learn how to finish games. When coach brought us over and told us we needed to pull it together is when we started to get it in our heads that we could lose.”

On the play calling:

“We were just trying to get a big play, because we needed a momentum shift. We thought throwing the ball was going to get us that big play.”

Senior Outside Linebacker B.J. Beaty:

On the second half:

“We didn’t make any changes. They just came out and they didn’t quit. We gave them a few plays here and there and they swung the momentum around. It made a big difference.”

On stopping the drives:

“We kind of let them slide. We just have to finish them off, and can’t let them have big drives. We kept letting them have four or six yards at a time. They just slowly went down there and scored. We should have ended that on defense.”

Freshman Wide Receiver Paul Richardson:

On the Colorado’s final drive:

“Coach got us together and told us we needed to make some plays, so we were ready to make big plays on the drive. I told Scotty (McKnight) we got to go and make this happen and he said `yeah let’s make some big plays. He (McKnight) caught a deep pass for a nice gain. Then I caught a deep pass for a nice gain.”

On the incomplete pass in the end zone:

“I’m shocked and I thought I was in. I really don’t know what went wrong. I want to watch film and see what happen. It’s eating me alive right now. There was no question in my mind that I was in. We still had a couple of seconds left so I just moved on to the next play.”

On the final play:

“They put two on me and when I broke I thought there was pass interference, but I don’t make the call I just play football.”