Colorado Head Coach Dan Hawkins Quotes

On Hansen Not Knowing All of the Offensive Sets
“That’s a lot of it. I thought [Offensive Coordinator] Mark [Helfrich] did a good job of just simplifying things a little bit for Tyler, so that he could use his legs. Obviously, you have to have some throws in there. He knows it all, he’s a very smart kid, but we wanted to make sure that we did things that he was going to have some success at. We didn’t want to overload him too much, even though he knew most of it. Some of the things that we had Cody doing, or Cody had a little more command on, because of his expertise and his experience; we let him run those plays. There was a little bit of a flow, there was a little bit of a time where we let Tyler do some of the plays that Cody had, and some of the plays Cody did that were Tyler’s.”

On His Decision to Take off Tyler Hansen’s Redshirt Now
“Maybe it was because of his legs, you know he can really run. It was a huge sacrifice for him, but I think it also speaks to the kind of camaraderie we have on our team. We’ve been messing around with Eugene [Goree] playing offensive line, and he’s had to make that switch. Obviously for Matt [Ballenger] to take a step back a little bit, versus him stepping forward, and even Cody had to give a few things up. I’m just really pleased with our program and our guys, because I think they’re really getting what this whole thing is about. I think that’s the biggest lesson for them. It’s not something that you want to do necessarily, but we talked to Tyler, it’s not something we would have made him do. We just said, How do you feel about it?’ And he didn’t hesitate an instant; I mean he was on it.”

On When He Decided to Use Tyler Hansen
“Before we started going on Tuesday. I think we just looked at where we were on offense, and what it is we wanted to do and what we thought we could do. We felt like his athleticism at quarterback was going to give us another dimension, and it did.”

On the Current State of the Quarterback Position
“The best thing about it is, again, I think we’ve got a number of kids that are just more concerned about the team and winning, than they are about themselves. I gave Nick Nelson a big hug in there; down the road, I say that all kids get their just-do in the end, you can’t buy respect, you can’t buy those things. I think for all of those guys to just say, I’m here, I’ll do what you want me to do, however you want me to do it. I’ll play, not play, I’ll signal.’ Matt [Ballenger] went over and ran scout team [this week]. He’s a big guy and he’s the closest thing we had to Josh Freeman. Again, that was a huge sacrifice for him to go over there and do that. Our coaches do a great job of just loving each guy up and making them feel important. Like I told Nick and Matt, that’s a lot of humble pie; but they’ve all eaten it and eat it again, and the man that can deal with it is going to come up aces in the end.”

On If He is Concerned about Colorado’s Passing Game
“Are you concerned about the stock market?”

On Keeping Tyler Hansen a Secret
“I don’t think they prepared for it; which, by the way, I have got to give the local media mad props. For being out there and watching it everyday and not saying anything, that’s huge right there. I know a lot of coaches bust on the media and I appreciate you guys doing that. I know we talked a long time ago, when you guys wanted the gates to be open, so you could come in there and watch practice and I said, Hey, if I can trust you, you can trust me.’ That was big, that scored a lot of points with me; because I said, Let’s see how far this thing goes, because one of those guys just may not be able to stand it and throw it out there.’ That’s huge props to all of you who watch practice everyday. [Kansas State] plays teams that run zone read, and run the quarterback around and do that; but they’re obviously not practicing that, and they have to adjust some of their schemes, in terms of what they do. I think it did help us, it did.”

On Keeping Hansen in the Game After he Threw an Interception
“It’s one of those things again, people always think the quarterback has got my last name and I don’t look at it quite as harshly. But at the same time, I say, Hey, the kid is playing pretty good.’ I didn’t hold it against [Tyler Hansen]. It is hard to tell a quarterback to never throw an interception. That is a hard concept.”

On Not Kicking a Field Goal at the end of the Game
“At that point right there, one, I had confidence in the offense, which that didn’t happen and I just felt like hey, we had one blocked and we had one missed so we’re probably better off, just for the psyche of the whole team to say, hey, lets put it on the line and go. That’s not to discount Aric [Goodman] by any means.  I just said hey, I thought we had a good play but unfortunately we didn’t get it but we wanted to get a first down and ended on offense right there.”

On What Can be Done to Improve the Passing Game
“We just have to keep working, we have to be creative. A little smoke, a little mirrors, move people around a little bit and use the weapons that we have and keep battling and scratching to try and move the football. It’s been well documented that we’ve been dinged and we have to be creative and work our way around it. I think our guys are doing an awesome job with that.”

On Using Cody Hawkins at QB on Final Offensive Drive “It kind of started out with Cody. I think we felt a little bit better with him out there just in terms of what we may have to do or see or change things. It just is easily could have been Tyler [Hansen] but we left Cody out there.”

On Going Through Tough Stretch of Losing
“I said before I knew we were going to go through a tough stretch and we have. I kind of told our guys the other day that horrible, awful, despicable Florida State team that we should have never lost to has lost one game so far. That Texas team, they’re doing alright too.”

On If He Has Ever Taken a Redshirt Off a Quarterback
“I don’t know necessarily that I’ve ever done it with a quarterback. We have done it with other players before. When I was at Boise State we had a defensive back and we were getting ready to play Hawaii and had a bunch of guys dinged up and you need defensive backs against those guys. We said, Hey, its up to you, we’re good either way.’ It is a huge sacrifice and we’re fortunate to have a guy with Tyler’s physical abilities and his intangibles of being able to sacrifice for the team.”

On the Fumble Caused by Cha’pelle Brown
“That was huge, that was big. Again, it’s just one of those things that has happened for us a little bit through the stretch is we haven’t really had a bunch of momentum changers and igniters, but our defense stepped up and made the plays they had to make and that was big right there. It’s a one-point game so anything can matter, but I think more than anything else it just shined a little bit of a light on us and gave our guys a little bit of juice to kind of go alright, lets go. That was the other thing too; when we went for it on fourth down I thought it was awesome, because I really love the chemistry of the guys. All of the defensive guys were saying, Do it again, we’ve got your back. We’ll stop them, whatever you want to do; kick it, go for it, whatever you want to do and we’ll stop them.’ “

On Colorado’s Defensive Steam
“I thought Ron Collins and Greg Brown did a good job of mixing it up. I think they had a little bit of a problem because our guys did a good job of disguising some things and bringing some things that we haven’t shown necessarily before. As it kind of got down to crunch time at the end we went with our base package and tried to keep everything in front of us. I thought there were enough nice change ups to throw them off guard a little bit.”

On Running a Two-Quarterback System
“I hate it. But it is what it is. I didn’t like the fact that I was so slow and short and not very athletic either but I had to deal with that. Again, the awesome thing is that these guys are great with it and they’re supportive of each other. We’ll deal with it as it goes. I think in all honesty if you don’t have two guys that can put their ego aside and have enough faith in their coach and their team then you have problems. Both of these guys are studs about that and they’ve been very supportive of each other, rallying around each other, helping each other out. That’s why we end up winning.

On Playing 22 Freshman So Far This Season
“As you just kind of go along each guy sometimes learns and grows and moves. I’m looking at these guys and loving where they’re at and I think they’re having a lot of success and playing pretty well against a tough schedule as they continue to grow and get better and our staff can continue to put more wrinkles in the game plan and have more buttons to push on the space shuttle, you’ve got something really good.”