Bobby Petrino spoke to the media after yesterday’s 20-13 win over NC State. Video and transcript below.
Video from TheCrunchZone.com
That’s a good win for us. I’m happy. It was a very, very good team win. Obviously we all understand we played great defense and came up with big plays defensively, did a nice job of shutting them down. I was happy with the way offensively we came out and got the lead. That’s important for us to play with the lead because we do have really good pass rushers and guys that can get to the quarterback and make them throw the ball. I think that really helped us. That was a great punt (by Josh Appleby to pin NC State at the 5) at the end, so it was great to see the special teams play. I wish we didn’t give up that one (90-yard) kickoff return, but that did make it exciting. Basically I’m just really happy for our players. They’ve worked extremely hard, stuck together, had a good attitude, and they played extremely hard and we found a way to win the game.
ON THE LATE STOPS
We’re pretty good on defense. We’ve got good defensive front guys, and they played fast. I thought they controlled the line of scrimmage at the end and were able to get after the quarterback and not only sack him and hit him, but when you’re doing that, the quarterback’s eyes seem to come down and you don’t see things down the field. I think it all played into effect. We were strong and physical.
ON THE FUMBLE RECOVERIES
It was good. I’ll tell you what; it was a lot better out there than I thought it would be. They did a great job with the field getting it in a great way to play. The wind wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be. We had the rain hold off for the most part. So it was, defensively we did a great job.
ON JACKSON’S EARLY RUN AND WHAT MADE IT SO EFFECTIVE
Speed. He’s fast. He first did a nice job of reading it. We blocked it well, our running back did a nice job of carrying out the fake. That’s really important for us because if we do a good job on ball-handling, carrying out our fakes, and we just hold the backside safety or the backside linebacker a little bit, he’s got the speed to take it the distance. Our receivers were in great position downfield. It’s kind of one of those things we talk about all the time that all 11 guys did their job.
ON BONNAFON’S LATE THIRD-DOWN RUN
It was great. We trust Reggie. He really understands what we’re trying to do. He can play from under the center and run the things we needed to do to win the game. We felt like in the fourth quarter we needed to get under the center, drive the ball, and he handled it really well. I’m really happy for him, and he knows how much he means to this team.
ON THE EFFECTIVENESS OF THE PASS RUSH
We’re good pass rushers. We are. Once you get a lead and we mix up the coverages, we have the ability to rush the passer. I don’t know how many sacks we had, but we were back there being very disruptive and making a lot of plays in their backfield.
ON IF THE TEAM FELT LIKE IT HAD ITS BACKS AGAINST THE WALL
We never talked about that. We talked about practicing hard, working hard, getting better. Then what we wanted to do was come out and really focus one play at a time, improve on our consistency, wanted our young guys to really utilize their technique and trust their technique. Sometimes when you get into battle and you’re young, you go away from your technique. We put examples up like Sheldon Rankins – one of the best technique players in America. We’re trying to work hard on that. Then we just wanted to play hard and finish and have great effort. For the most part, I feel like we did.
ON IF HE STARTED THREE FRESHMAN O-LINEMEN
I don’t know. I quit looking at what year they are. (laughter). (As for grading their performance), when you look at O-linemen, you’ve got to turn the video on. I’m looking at the defense and trying to see is if we can get yards and what the next call is, so I’m probably not really good and knowing how our O-line played. I do know our ability to run the ball in the fourth quarter and win the game was huge for us.
ON THE IMPORTANCE OF WINNING A CLOSE WIN GIVEN AN 0-3 START
It puts a big smile on the players’ face. That’s the best thing about it because they really have worked hard, really have been able to keep a good attitude and stuck together, so it was great to see the smiles on their faces in the locker room.
ON IF IT CHANGES THE WHOLE OUTLOOK OF THE SEASON TO WIN THIS GAME
It really helps us going into the bye week because we’ll have a good attitude and know we need to work hard. We’ve got a great game coming up, and we’ve got a little extra time to prepare for it. We’ve just got to continue to work hard on the practice field.
ON IF THIS GAME WAS MORE WHAT HE FELT THE DEFENSE WOULD BE LIKE THIS SEASON
We’re a good defensive team, and I think you have to play together. It’s hard on the defense when you’re not able to score points and get ahead, and (the opponent) can be patient and keep running the ball. The ability to get a lead allows us to play better defense. I think we’re a really good defensive team. I like the way ran to the ball, we tackled well, and that defensive front is hard to block.
ON JACKSON’S TD RUN
He read it. He read the defensive end, and like I said, the running back carried out his fake really well, which held the backside safety and linebacker, and Lamar made a cut and took it the distance. I don’t know if it was Staples or Jaylen Smith, but they did a great job blocking the corner.
ON CALLING TIMEOUT IN THE FINAL SECONDS BEFORE TIMEOUT
I kind of messed that up. I should have gotten the timeout with 12 seconds to go. I wanted to try to make them punt and see if we could – well, we were talking about what we wanted to do at halftime and how we wanted to start the second half. That’s one of those things that I got too focused on offense and wasn’t paying attention to what we should have done for the game. So that was all on me.
ON JACKSON’S PASSING IN THE 2ND HALF
We’ve got to watch that (on film). I didn’t think we were as effective throwing the ball in the second half. We missed a couple where we had chances for big plays. We dropped one. So again, when you’re not executing, it’s everyone, not just the quarterback.
ON THE LOCKER ROOM ATMOSPHERE
It was fun, really fun. The guys were having a good time. They were smiling. They worked really hard to get ready for this game. I thought they were really focused this morning coming to the stadium and doing the walk through, so it was great to see them go out and get a win.
ON IF THE WEATHER AFFECTED THE GAME PLAN
We really didn’t (change for it). I was a little bit concerned about handling the ball, doing the read stuff, and if we were going to pitch the ball. So I was really happy to see how the field was and the way the weather was when I got here today because it didn’t really affect anything.
ON HOW HE GAUGED NC STATE’S RUNNING GAME
I think they’re a good running football team, have a good offensive line, do a good job schematically, know how to gain an advantage with their shifts, and they’re very well-coached. I think they’re a very good football team.