K-State Holds Weekly Press Conference

Head Coach Bill Snyder
On concerns with Joe Hubener’s first conference away game…
“Joe has been around for a while now. He has seen it. I cannot say that he has experienced it to the ultimate, but how do we deal with that? Just be Joe and play your game. And, for everybody, as we say all the time, keep the game between the white lines and try to be oblivious to everything else. Once you are in between those white lines, it is all the same. There is not really anything different except a couple of logos on the field. It is whether you can confine your thoughts to that arena or not, and I think Joe can. He is a bright young guy. He seems to handle that well. I give him enough to rattle him if he was going to get rattled, so it is probably going to be a relief for him to be on the field where I cannot get to him.”

On preparing the team for the number of tough games coming up…
“We are not looking to how many road games we have and what the next four or five ball games look like. If we are thinking about that, then we are going to have some real trouble this weekend and some real problems (at practice) this afternoon. It is just a matter of being factual with the things that we have to do. You know, we have some players that have been to where we are traveling. When that is the case, we have video tape that identifies where you can see the sidelines and see the stadium to get acclimated to a certain degree, but in terms of traveling, we try to keep it consistent with what we do here.

“The quality of opponent, obviously, gets better now that we are out of the non-conference schedule, and we understand that as well. We have known that for a long time. But, the rest of it is just really centered around our preparation for Oklahoma State. Like I said, once you get in the white lines, if you can just pay attention to what you need to pay attention to, and you do become oblivious to certain things. We are trying to focus on things that are issues for us. In addition to preparing for Oklahoma State, we are still in the realm of improving, correcting mistakes and solving issues and problems that we have had up to this point in time.”

On holding an 18-7 record coming out of bye weeks…
“Well, we lost seven, so I am not sure how much success we really had. I really do not know. I would have to go back and look at each one, which I am not going to do, but I think each week is different. A lot of it may have had something to do with how good of football team we were and something may have had something to do with how good they were. I do not know – I just really do not.”

On what makes Stillwater such a tough place to travel to…
“Well, it is tough if you do not play well. If you play well, it probably was not all that hard. Beyond the last two trips down there, and really the only one that is significant right now – the last trip we were down there in 2013 – because we have a few players that were there at that point in time. Just remembering the ball game, we were in the ball game all the way until the end and turned the ball over. I think we had, collectively, three or four turnovers in the ball game, which obviously hurt us a great deal. It was how we played more than anything else. We just gave up some points and turned the ball over.”

On wrinkles in preparation when playing against two quarterbacks…
“I do not know if it is wrinkles, but I think both of them can do the same things. In their offense, you anticipate that No. 4 comes in the ball game and they are going to run the quarterback run game with him because he can run the ball. But you might go back, he completed about 67-percent of his passes against us in 2013 when we played them. So, he threw the ball around pretty well in that ball game. I would not preclude him being on the field. My guesstimate about him, or anybody else, is he could play one snap or he could play 80 snaps. It is just whatever they choose to do, but I do know that he is capable, and he proved to us that he can throw the ball around. We know he can run it because that is what they use him for now. But, he will do both when he is in the ball game – he will throw it as well as run it.”

Redshirt Freshman Offensive Lineman Dalton Risner
On having a bye week…
“It was nice to get the legs up and relax. We did not relax too much, we practiced pretty much every day but it was good to take a little stress off. We looked back and corrected things and could start getting ready for Oklahoma State.”

On playing in the atmosphere at Oklahoma State…
“I have never played there, so this will be new for me. We have just been hearing from the players about crowd noise and the sound of the guys beating the pads on the side. We practiced with crowd noise during practice and have been getting ready for that. It is going to be a battle, but we have so much confidence and we know we are going to get in there and get the job done. It has been great to have that bye week to go in and correct some things that we have done.”

On having played a road game…
“I am so glad that I have played a road game before going to Oklahoma State because on that first drive at UTSA, I could not hear and it was crazy. Where I come from, the most people I played in front of was maybe 500 people in the stadium, so it was really good for me to get the feel of an away game and understand that it is not quiet during the offense. It was great for me and I have a lot more confidence going into Oklahoma State.”

Junior Offensive Lineman Terrale Johnson
On how he has played so far…
“I think I have been doing pretty well. I have made some mistakes out there, and I can always get better. So far I have just been trying to do my job and do my part to help the offensive line.”

On playing at K-State…
“I never thought I was going to be at K-State. Things happen for a reason and God placed me here. Now that I am here, it is amazing and I would not want to be anywhere else.”

Junior Linebacker Will Davis
On the defense getting turnovers…
“It has been a while. It is something we have been working on and we have focused on last week in the bye week, going into this week. Trying to improve on getting turnovers, that is one of the big sticking points where we have focused our improvement. That is something Coach Snyder has preached to us also. If a ball is in the air, it is ours also because just like the offense, we have to go and make a play to.”

On pulling in an interception…
“Oh, definitely. Any time you have an offense like Oklahoma State who throws the ball around, it is going to give us opportunities. We are looking to get one and hopefully change the momentum of a game.”

Sophomore Linebacker Elijah Lee
On Oklahoma State…
“They have good skill players. Their quarterback has a good arm just like (Jeff) Driskel did from Louisiana Tech, and their reserving corps is solid. They have a junior college guy and a guy that has been playing for a few years. Also, their offensive line has some experience.”

On Oklahoma State’s two-quarterback system…
“It keeps you on your toes because you do not know who is going to be in or what they are capable of. Both of them can run and pass. We just have to be alert.”

Senior Defensive Tackle Travis Britz
On coming off of a bye week…
“We had a set of goals that we went over, and as a defense we tried to eliminate those mistakes that we have been making. As a whole, we are steadily progressing toward those goals. We still have some improvement to do, but as a whole we have conquered some of those things that we had issues with earlier in the season.”

On having already played one road game…
“I think it is huge. We have the experience of going on the road and understanding what we can do. The road game being a morning game was even more beneficial because we knocked out two birds with one stone in that area. Most of us have been to Oklahoma State before, and we show pictures in the locker room to the guys who have not. We can look at the film and kind of understand what the atmosphere is like. Coach has really done a good job of getting us prepared for what we are going to see.”

On stepping into a leadership role…
“I knew coming into the season that I was going to have to fill a leadership role. We had (Jonathan) Truman and Dante (Barnett) last year, and Coach (Tom) Hayes told me that it was my time to step up and be vocal. I am usually not that kind of guy, but especially since Dante left, I need to step up and have that role and be the encouragement and the stern voice that our defense needs. I think the biggest thing is me opening up and being honest with the guys and being honest with myself.”

Senior Kicker Jack Cantele
On looking back at his big kicks in the Louisiana Tech game...
“I have not really thought about it. I certainly know that it was an important play in the game, but we made enough plays as a team overall to win that game. We may not have played our best offensively or defensively, but I like to think of it as a team aspect – we did all the things we had to do to win the game. It was really the first adversity we have had to face all year, and I was glad to see that our team can handle it going forward. It is going to be important this year. The Big 12 is going to be tough. It is definitely going to benefit us.”

On the range he is comfortable with…
“That depends on so many things environmentally. The temperature, there may be some rain this Saturday, that will effect it. It is a day-to-day thing. I would say it is better than it has been the last two years. I couldn’t put a specific number to it. Last week I made a 55-yard field goal at practice, but I had the wind to my back and it was warm. If it is 60 degrees today, that’s maybe shorter by five yards.”

On his confidence from a year ago…
“I am a pretty confident kicker. I go out there with the same mindset as in the past, the only difference is the experience. I am a lot more mature. In my mind, I think I am a better kicker then I was a year ago.”