Postgame Quotes: Northwestern 21, Minnesota 13 (Oct. 27, 2012)

Go Gophers!
Go Gophers!

Go Gophers!

Oct. 27, 2012

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Postgame Quotes

Minnesota (5-3, 1-3) 44, Purdue (3-5, 0-4) 28
Attendance: 41,062
Oct. 27, 2012

Minnesota Head Coach Jerry Kill

On his perspective of today’s game…
“In the first half, I think we played well together as a team. We didn’t start the game very well. I was disappointed with the way we started, but after we got some momentum it was kind of like how we’ve been on the other side of it. Everything just seemed to fall into place and we executed well. We made some big plays, which we needed to do, and we played good football. As for the second half, I don’t think our team is used to being out in front like that. We held on a little bit more. I’d like to see us have more control of the game in the second half. That being said, we didn’t turn the ball over and we created some plays. Losing A.J. Barker in the second half was big. He scores a touchdown and gets tackled there late. That was a critical injury and I’m certainly concerned about that.”

On Philip Nelson’s play…
“He took step one last week and he took another step here at home. I thought he played outstanding. We were able to move the chains and score touchdowns, and he was accurate on the deep ball. We actually dropped a couple, which was unfortunate or he would have had an even bigger day. There was good timing and, again, when your quarterback doesn’t turn over the football, moves the chains, and puts points on the board, and he’s a freshman, that’s a good sign for the future.”

Minnesota Players

Minnesota Quarterback Philip Nelson

On if he thought he was going to play early this season
“I never really changed my mindset during the season. I always prepared like I was going to play, so my opportunity would not embarrass me.”

On What the key was on the scoring drives
“I think everyone needed to get the nerves out (early in the game). Right away after that, things seemed to be rolling pretty well.

On the team’s mentality coming into the game
“We definitely wanted to come out and win. We played pretty well in the first half and that pushed us to our goal of winning the game.

On the game plan featuring more pass plays
“In our preparation coming into this one, we noticed that Purdue’s corners liked to bite on some short game stuff. We put in some double routes and caught them jumping early.”

Minnesota Wide Receiver MarQueis Gray

On his thoughts of Philip Nelson’s play
“He did a great job today. He showed a lot of character, poise, and confidence. He was out there having fun today.”

On his diving catch
“I did not know I caught it until I came up with the catch. Now that I am playing wide receiver, I know I will not be touching the ball on every play. I need to make sure my plays count.”

On the transition back to wide receiver
“(The transition was) not difficult. The routes are different and I need to get back to the huddle faster, but it is not really a problem.”

Minnesota Cornerback Michael Carter

On his mindset for the first possession of the second half
“I will take it back to game planning with coach Sawvel and coach Claeys working on route concepts and different situations. I took advantage of that and I felt that I was in the zone.”

On if he was surprised to see the ball thrown his way multiple times
“Yeah, I was. It really does not matter. I like the ball thrown my way so I can make a play.”

On what he saw on the interception
“The fans. I just ran (towards the end zone). I just saw daylight and ran towards the fans so I could score.”

On what changed this season
“I came back into school and I was more mature. I stopped talking about just football, and I began to think about school and other important things.”

Purdue Head Coach Danny Hope

On the game…
“We didn’t play very well in the first half, obviously. We didn’t do a very good job of protecting our quarterback. He was on the run some throughout the course of the first half. We had some dropped passes, which really negated our progress offensively. We kept putting their offense on the field. We didn’t manufacture near enough pass rush on defense, and we tackled poorly at times. We bit on some double-breaking moves. We bit on the slant-and-go back in the secondary. They made a huge play out of it. We bit on a post corner and they made a huge play out of it. Next thing you know, we were far behind.”

“We came in at halftime and got together as a team, and we recommitted ourselves to play as hard as we could in the second half, hoping we could score enough points to get back in the ballgame. But we couldn’t get near enough done to get the ballgame close in the end.”

On this game as a step back from forcing overtime against Ohio State last week…
“It’s a setback regardless of where we were at at the end of last week. It’s a huge setback. We have struggled to regain our confidence as a football team. We opened the season with a lot of confidence and a lot of fire as a football team and played well for the most part. Then we had two ugly games at home and obviously lost some confidence as a team in some ways. I thought coming back and playing Ohio State like we played them last week would add some fuel to our fire, if you will, but that didn’t seem to be the case today in the first half.”

On scoring on the first drive in each of the past three games…
“Yeah, we’ve started well. We practiced well. They come out every week and they work hard and they put a lot into it. They put a lot of extra time into it. We just didn’t have what it took to get it done in the first half today, and that’s disappointing, even though we did start well.”

Purdue Players

DT Kawann Short

On trying to back in after his ankle injury…
“I can’t move it side-to-side. It was either hurt us (by trying to play injured), or just sit out and try to get better.”

On the first half …
“They came out ready to play. They had a target. They wanted to win this game very badly. That’s what they did. They went out and they had more energy than we did.”

TE Crosby Wright

On putting the first half into words…
“It’s hard to. I thought we were better prepared and that we came out ready to play. Mentally, I think everyone was in a good place. We came out knowing what we needed to get done, and we didn’t do it obviously. We just didn’t execute the way we needed to. It’s obviously very frustrating and it’s confusing. We’ll have to watch the film and go over our errors and things like that.”

QB Robert Marve

On the game…
“It’s kind of been a rocky season, just numbers-wise. We kind of bounced back strong against Ohio State, and obviously didn’t show up good enough today. You’ve got to roll with the punches. We’ve got to go with the next week. We’re playing next week no matter what, and we’ve got to get ready.”

On being down by so much at halftime after a strong game against Ohio State last week…
“Right back in the same situation where it was before. We talked about it as a team. We’ve got to learn. When you lose at something, you’ve got to figure out why you lost. We’ve got to do a better job at that.”