Sept. 19, 2009
Box Score |
Opening Comment ...
"We've got to give Louisville a lot of credit. I knew they would be fighting
mad and they were. They came in and took the fight to us and totally turned the
game around in the third quarter. They took advantage of their forced three turnovers.
I told my team at halftime, the most important play in the game was the second
half kickoff; I told them where they were going to run it and they did and they
gashed us. Four plays in the third quarter turned the whole momentum of the game.
Like we have many times in the last several years this team showed the poise
and got a little break. (Louisville) fumbled a punt and they gave us an opportunity
and we took full advantage of that opportunity like they took advantage of some
of their (opportunities). I thought that defensively we weren't as sharp as we
should have been. They did a good job throwing the ball on us; we gave up a couple
long balls which is something we haven't done a lot of. Early in the first drive
our defense was not reacting correctly on the cut back plays and they gashed
on the very first play of the game. We had it stuffed and Victor (Anderson) cut
it back and found open area where there shouldn't have been because we were over
pursuing. I'm just happy to get the win. We are 2-0 going into a very difficult
stretch in the next game at home against the number one team in the nation. I
want to give (Louisville) coach Kragthrope a lot of credit for a well designed
game plan. It was well executed and we were fortunate to get the win."
On the play of Mike Hartline ...
"I think Mike overall did a very good job except for the two turnovers.
His fumble and the pick, they sat the corner on the route for Randall (Cobb)
and he threw it right into the corner. Sometimes we need to continue to learn
and when we think we've arrived, we haven't arrived. The good news is, he made
a great drive to win the game and get it back for us, actually brought us from
behind twice in the fourth quarter to win the game."
On the third quarter ...
"Our team has learned in the last three years, going on four now that
we're a good team. We're capable of making up for our mistakes, or other team's
good play. Coming back we didn't hang our head, we just went out there, we
rolled up our sleeves, we knew what we had to do and went out there and got
On the offensive performance ...
"It's unacceptable to have the cascade of turnovers right after another
and then you have your defense on the field virtually the whole third quarter
and our guys were worn slick. I'm amazed the time of possession ended up as
close as it was, about five minutes. I thought they would have had the ball,
40-something minutes, cause we only had four plays in the third quarter. Plus
we had a kickoff return for a touchdown that negated an offensive possession."
On the play of the running backs ...
"I thought the backs did a good job. I wasn't happy about (Derrick) Locke's
fumble on the kickoff return, he was struggling for extra yards. But you've
got to know there's a time to fight for extra yards and there's a time to protect
the football. The quickness was there, he was in a little bit of distress after
the kickoff return. He had a little visit with the can and kind of lost his
breakfast. I think our backs were pretty good. All those stats that everybody
likes to quote, `the team that ran for the most yards won the game.' I think
we ended up with a few more yards rushing than they did, even though they were
hurting us more than I like to see running the football."
On Randall Cobb's performance ...
"The screen where he broke a tackle was huge, because it was a third and long
and it looked like they had him. They made some on us like that too, where we
missed some tackles. Our tackling was not good today. One of the reasons it didn't
look as good is because there were some good people we were trying to tackle
and Randall is one of those guys too. He made some key plays and that was a huge
On how long coach Randy Sanders was out of commission on the sideline ...
"I would say he was down for about four-five minutes. Then he was back with a
headset on, I'm sure in a lot of pain in the sling. We're doing x-rays on it
right now and we're just trying to see how we move forward."
On the defense ...
"I'm still not happy with the overall play. We're getting locked up a
little too much with our defensive ends with the tackles. We're still a little
bit uncertain about what we're supposed to do on some of those cut backs early.
Because of that, we're locking on instead of releasing and chasing like we're
supposed to and the linebacker will over pursue due to a combination of those
two things. We had pressure up the field some of the time the defensive ends
and (UL quarterback Justin) Burke stepped up and bought time where the tackles
should have been coming off and getting in his face when he stepped up. He
stepped up and ran it one or two times or he found somebody open by buying
time. We've got to be more consistent in our rush lanes with our front four.
We can't bring pressure all the time and hang our secondary out to play zero
coverage or man. We're a work in progress and we need to get better. We did
some things a lot better in the game today than we did two weeks ago, but the
level of competition is stepping up big time too. Next week, it takes about
as big a step as anybody in the country is going to get when you have to play
the number one team in the nation."
Kentucky Player Quotes
On the running game of Victor Anderson ...
"They really ran the ball well as a team and I think that we did a good job of
attacking the point of attack. Anderson did a great job of cutting back, especially
on that first play and he really got a lot of yards by doing that. I think that
the cutback is something that we are going to have to work on and try to get
better at stopping it."
On if the defense was tired towards the end of the game ...
"I think that we were extremely tired, but at the same time we are a very qualified
and deep defensive team. We have some great guys and a lot of talent on this
team and everyone worked hard."
On what it means for him to win three straight games against Louisville ...
"That is what we wanted to do when I came here, was to win and be the dominate
school in the state. It is great that we won three straight but we have to keep
things going and keep improving if we want to move up the ladder in the SEC."
On the third quarter ...
"It was a tough third quarter, and when things like that happen, play after play
and series after series, it's tough. It is tough to keep playing hard after that
but I was motivated and keep playing. When stuff like that happens it is about
how you respond, and I had to keep my head up and keep my guys motivated because
they look up to me."
On Louisville and how good they played ...
"It was a tough game the whole way. If you mix around a couple of plays here
and there with plays that they had and plays that we had, then it could have
been a different score. I am really happy with our offense and how they came
out to play with fire and went down the field and down the field time after time.
I don't know how many punts we had but it wasn't a lot. I am happy all around,
our offensive line played hard, our running backs ran hard and our wide receivers
On how much heart the team showed late ...
"It is great because three or four years ago it doesn't happen. I put my defense
in a pickle in the third and I know they were tired and doing their best and
they did great against adversity. Coach Brooks says that he would rather have
the game won in the third then it come down to that, but a win is a win and we
are excited about having the governor's cup back. "
On being tired at the end of the third quarter ...
"Very tired, I thought about coming out but I thought I'm a better player than
that so I had to gut it out and keep playing. Coach came to us and told us he
knew we were very tired but that's where the heart kicks in and you show the
love of the game that you have for it to keep playing."
On the defensive pressure in the third and fourth quarter ...
"It was a lot of pressure going into the fourth quarter and that's when in the
second half we had to come together as a unit not just defense but offense also.
We had to get everything clicking on all cylinders even the special teams so
could come out at halftime. We feel like we won the fourth quarter."
On the experience of close situations against big teams ...
"We draw on it a lot like I said on the interception I thought about the close
game at Florida State when my friend Micah Johnson had the ball stripped. So
when I got the interception I thought get out of bounds. It's always good to
know you've been in certain situations and take feedback from those passed games
and use it during the present. We've been in that situation we know that when
we get in the red zone situations our backs against the wall and we'll come out
On playing under pressure ...
"We faced a lot of adversity in this game just being down and flip flopping back
and forth. It was a rough game for us but we just had to stay focused and keep
our mind on what we had to do."
On the fumble recovery did you think the game was over ...
"No, it was still up and down. You always have that feeling that you're going
to win but it's never for sure until the clock has run down."
On the third quarter ...
"We did have an awful third quarter. They're exactly right if they say we had
an awful third quarter because we did. Offense wasn't on the field maybe two
minutes the whole quarter it was a rough time for us and we knew we had to come
back in the fourth quarter and fight."
On his demeanor during the second half ...
"No, I put my head down for a second in the third quarter, then I was like I
have to get some life into this team so I just went around cheering everybody
up just getting their mind right and just going out there and helping do my job."
On the crowd ...
"It was better than what I thought. They surprised me today. I felt like it was
the Louisville game two years ago when Stevie (Johnson) caught that pass I just
felt that same vibe from that game."
On the pressure of the game ...
"I feel like we just fought through it and came out on top. I think we did well
but I have a lot of getting better to do. It was a lot of pressure on me because
it's a rivalry game and I was thinking too much and I was trying to do too much
and at times I didn't really do enough. At times I didn't really know how to
balance myself. Some plays I made some big plays and some plays I could have
On being 2-0 going into next week against Florida ...
"It's really important because it's going to be a tough game. It's going to be
a fight. We are 2-0 so we got a little confidence and swagger behind us and were
going to have to bring it into that game."
On the game being a confidence builder ...
"It's a confidence builder but it also wakes us up. It lets us know that we have
to get better and we have to finish games and we didn't finish this game. In
the third we came out and let those guys in the game and those guys were fired
up. You can't put a team in a rivalry game fired up so you just have to come
out and finish off drives. We fumbled and stuff and it put us down but we showed
fight and we came out and got the victory."
On making a statement against Florida next week ...
"It's always a good opportunity when you face the number one team. There is going
to be a lot of doubters and stuff. Those guys are going to come in here fired
up. We're just going to have to really, really prepare for those guys."
On winning the game ...
"I think that's one of the things we talked about coming in was that we have
to regain dominance over the state. That's something we really have to push and
hopefully the younger guys can keep it going."
On the team overcoming Louisville for the win ...
"I feel like we are a resilient bunch. No matter what happens we know that we
have a chance to win, so I feel like we saw some things that we have to work
on. Although, we did some things wrong we are still a mature enough bunch to
On this team's mentality compared to past teams ...
"I think getting guys that believe in each other and in the team, no matter what
we feel and no matter the situation, we are going to win. I feel like that comes
with maturity and that's the type of team we are right now. I feel like games
like this build maturity and confidence especially when so many things go wrong
and we still find a way to pull out the win."
On his kickoff return ...
"First I pressed up the field after I saw my blockers going left, and I just
kept going straight up the field after I saw them crash, I said, `now it's time
to go'. I saw them crash and I had three good blocks by three of my players,
I think Moncell (Allen) had one, Will Johnson and Fonso (Alfonso Smith) had a
good block for me."
On his performance ...
"I can never be satisfied with a game. I didn't have a 100-yard rushing game
but I'm not complaining. That's something I would like to have and that's something
I definitely want to step up. I felt good in the passing game. I did have a 300-yard
game but there were some moves and pass plays where I could have done more for
On recovering mentally after the fumble ...
"After the first series I was fine after the fumble, the touchdown helped me
get my mind off of it."
On playing No. 1 Florida next weekend ...
"Yes, it'd be great to beat Florida. Everyone knows what they've got and we can't
make the same mistakes that we made today, if we do its going to be a long day
at Commonwealth Stadium."
On his performance ...
"I could have done a lot better. You know it's a big game, you're excited, you're
nervous. I made some mistakes, I lined up wrong. Everyone does it but you have
to learn and get better next week."
On defending the UL running game ...
"If you look at the statistics the majority of the yards are from rushing and
the cutback. It wasn't us letting him; it was us over playing him. You know we
were all there in the gap so he had no choice but to cutback. The bad thing is
we knew their running backs like to cutback and we still let them do it."
On having the Governors Cup back in Lexington ...
"It feels great, I have one more year and hopefully we can get it again. It's
an awesome trophy. Everybody is glad it gets to stay here. My freshman year,
my true freshman year, it was an embarrassing year getting beat like that at
Louisville and getting the cup back feels awesome."
Louisville Head Coach Steve Kragthorpe
"First of all, I'm proud of our football team. I'm proud to walk out of here
and say I'm the head coach. I thought they played their tail off today. We have
nothing to hang our head about. I'm sick. I'm so sick right now that we didn't
win that game. The guys in the locker room are sick. But we will bounce back,
we will rebound. I thought our guys played with unbelievable effort today, they
were flying around, making plays on the defensive side of the ball. The strip
on special teams to get the ball back for us, back and forth seesaw battles,
I think there were six lead changes in the game and our guys didn't flinch, not
one time did they flinch. They just kept fighting hard all day and I'm just sick
for our guys, sick for our players because they played so hard and I'm just sick
that we didn't get to win for them."
On several of the players breaking down on the field and in the locker
room after the game...
"We have great guys on this football team. They have a lot of character and a
lot of heart. We talked about leaving our heart out on the field and the guys
did that today. They played until their tank was empty. There was unbelievable
effort out on the field today. I thought those guys were flying around in all
three phases and Scotty [Long] made a huge play a couple of times and Trent [Guy]
made a huge play on a touchdown catch, great throw by Justin [Burke] there. Victor
[Anderson] made some huge plays in the game, gosh we just missed him by about
a foot out of bounds on the route in the second quarter which would have been
a big play for a touchdown there. Again, these guys have great character and
they are fighters. They're going to continue to fight throughout the course of
the season and we're going to have a great year."
On the fumble by Trent Guy...
"I told him not to feel bad. That play did not lose the game. There were a lot
of plays were we had a chance to win the game and there was not one play you
can point to and sat that it was the determining factor. He's a stud and I've
got his back. Everything he's been through and the way he played out there today,
the heart that he showed no can say anything bad about him."
On what this does for you guys for the rest of the season...
"There were some enormously huge things. I thought Justin [Burke] really stepped
up today as a leader, as a quarterback. I thought he did a good job of pulling
the ball down on a couple of occasions and running and getting a couple of first
downs. He did a great job one time where he started to run and recognized that
[Kentucky] was coming after him and he flipped it to Scott [Long] for a first
down. Again, I don't know that you can throw it from five yards better than he
did, that thing was on the money. Same thing, Scott made a catch on the slant
on the slow go route there on the boundary."
#13 Justin Burke, QB
On gaining confidence from this game...
"I think we got some confidence from this game. I don't think Indiana State game
gave as much confidence on the offense. I feel we kind of dominated this game
in all phases and we have to clean up our mistakes but it shows us that we can
go out and beat good teams. We just have to put it together and we will be alright.
It is going to propel us throughout the year I guarantee that, this is not something
that we are going to go downhill from. This is an uphill swing after this."
On not being able to capitalize on red zone chances...
"It is frustrating for me because that is where a quarterback makes his money.
I made some mental errors down there that could have been avoided and that has
got to be on the quarterback. I take full responsibility for that. We just killed
ourselves in some of those and in penalties that we shouldn't have done. But
the fact that we continued to attack was very good, we didn't get disheartened.
We didn't score on a couple, alright, and then we did get the ball back and did
score. It just shows that it is a game of resolve and I think we showed a lot
On coming back to his hometown to play and blocking out the homecoming
"When you are on the road you focus more. There were 70,000 screaming fans and
so we know they aren't our fans. It almost makes you more focused. I think in
the week of preparation we had some crowd noise out there and it didn't affect
us and I didn't think it affected us today. It just makes you more focused and
that's why I think we played the way we did today."
On the offense gaining confidence...
"I mean anytime you go out and move the ball like we did, I gain confidence when
the offense gains confidence. We stopped ourselves I really think. And that has
to be corrected. Other than that I think there were a lot of really good things
out there tonight. This is a good football team and we will win a lot of games
this year. Especially if we play like we did today. I know we didn't come out
with a victory and I don't like moral victories but we showed a ton of character
today and I don't think that can be questioned. And those types of traits will
take you through the season."
#84, Scott Long, WR
On emotions after the game ...
"Right now we are overwhelmed with emotion. I'm very proud of my teammates and
coaches and I think the reason we are so overcome with emotion is because of
how hard we played. I don't think I've ever been apart of a loss that helped
a team gain so much. Win or lose today, our team came together as brothers and
we played our hearts out in the second half. I'm hurt, but I'm proud of my teammates."
On what Louisville learned from the game ...
"We can play with anybody. We can play with SEC teams, we can play in games where
we're 14-point underdogs and we're not backing out from anybody. This has brought
us closer together and we're going to come out and fight next week."
On Louisville wide receiver Trent Guy ...
"Trent (Guy) got us back into the game whenever we were down. He had a great
kickoff return and a huge touchdown on the sideline in the goal rout. He has
been through so much and this [loss] is something that will only make him stronger."
On Louisville's offense ...
"We had a couple of penalties that got us out of our rhythm and broke our momentum.
We shot ourselves in the foot a couple of times, but we aren't going to hang
our heads at that."