Postgame Quotes

Kansas State Head Coach Bill Snyder
On the running game today…
“We ran the ball well. Obviously, our people up front played well. You have got to be able to throw it, too, and we did not throw the ball very well today. We needed some balance, particularly when we had a couple of those three-and-outs late. That cost us.”

On Duke Shelley’s absence late…
“I thought the interception that he made was great and [D.J.] Reed made a beautiful interception as well, but they still had about 440 yards passing. We just did not defend the pass very well. When we had to replace [Shelley], then obviously they got another big play against us, so I guess you could say it hurt us.”

On Jesse Ertz’s performance…
“I thought Jesse played well. He had some family issues that could have been pretty distracting but his tough mindedness overcame that.”

On the offensive line paving the way for the ground game…
“Our offensive line has improved week-in and week-out and this was no exception. Oklahoma State has a good defensive front and I thought our guys blocked well. We had a significant number of creases and the backs ran well.”

On handling the clock and getting into a position to score at the end of the game…
“I thought we did a reasonably good job. We were right there on the cusp. At the time, with the exception of the penalty, I think there was 10 seconds on the clock so we had the opportunity to get two snaps in, if needed. Penalties are penalties.”

On how the special teams made a difference today…
“Obviously, the turnover on the punt was major in the ballgame. I thought [Mitch] Lochbihler hit the daylights out of the ball, which was a great tribute to him. It is not that he hit with depth, he has always been able to do that. He had poise and composure to be able to hit the ball where we wanted to hit it but not crank it out of bounds. I was proud of his effort today.”

On his feeling of performing more of a complete game today…
“No, it was not a complete game. Maybe more of a complete game; I have to go back and reassess that, watch the tape, etc. We were inconsistent in the latter half of the ballgame; some good things, some not so good. Oklahoma State has a little bit to do with that, but once again it rests on our shoulders.”

On whether the team was on the cusp of finding its identity today…
“I believe so. That is something we addressed in the locker room. I am just hoping that they understand that as well and not let this pull them down. That has not been the nature of Kansas State football. It has always been to meet the challenge and having the persistence to work through things like this. It is amazing what six inches and no penalty would have meant to them. As I said to them, in all reality it is not the worst thing that is going to happen to them in their lives. The key moment is that it is a major test to our character, players and coaches alike. I like to believe that our guys will respond. I was not unhappy with our approach to the ballgame and the emotion for the ballgame. I thought all of those things were in place, but once again it is a full 60 minutes and we just have not completely done that yet.”

Sophomore Offensive Lineman Dalton Risner 
On the offense line performance…
“They played good, just not good enough. You have to be able to finish the game.”

On what the offense needs to fix before the last three games…
“We get the ball, it is 37-28 with a few minutes left on the clock we got third and inches as an offensive line, we keep that drive going, we put the game away right there. We got to be able to finish drives and be able to put the game away whenever we really need to.”

On the offensive mindset going into the last drive…
 “We knew that we had a shot and that we were going to win that game. We went in there and Jesse kept us calm and we did our best to do what we can and we got down to the three-yard line and just came up short.”

Senior Running Back Charles Jones
On dealing with a close game… 
“I feel like the last couple games have been there as well, but this is the first one that we had to drive and score, but it is not a good feeling but, with practices every day with the two-minute drill. It a quarterbacks’ dream to win a game with a two-minute drill, but we did not execute so it was a heartbreaker.”

On K-State’s offensive line being successful in the Big 12… 
“From what I have been seeing, I am loving what I am seeing. With our offensive play calling and our running game is unique and they are blocking their butts off.” 

On not going to it with fourth down and inches to go…
 “It was pretty disappointing but it is my coach and I am 100% behind his calls.” 

Junior Linebacker Elijah Lee
On last second loss…
“It is very difficult. The game last year, as you know, came down to the final seconds. So you know, it hurts that we had the chance to win this ball game and did not capitalize.”

On defensive struggles…
“We were up and down. We could have capitalized when we should have. What we have to do going into this bye week, what we are looking forward to is to capitalizing and fixing the mistakes that we make.”

On Oklahoma State passing game…
“The difference was just staying on top of them. We cannot let them get the deep ball, because that is what they live for. That is something we need to continue to work on.”

On rebounding in the second half…
“For the most part, we made a statement in the second half. In the big situations, we could have stepped up even bigger, but that is something that we will have to work on going into the bye week.”

On uniform change…
“Yeah, you know that always excites you. Stuff like that just help you fuel the fire. You just want go out and play good when you look good.”

Senior Defensive End Jordan Willis
On feelings about the end result…
“Pretty disappointed in the last drive that the defense had. The biggest issue was that they did nothing special, guys just were not filling their gaps. Obviously, it went from a pass situation to a run situation because they were getting into our territory. I do not think our guys adjusted to it.”

On Mason Rudolph’s performance…
“In my opinion, we gave good pressure on him [Mason Rudolph]. Then again, you will not be able to affect him all the time. I feel like we affected him most of the day though. Obviously, he is a good quarterback. You cannot just not allow him to get going, because if he does it is going to be a bad day for you.”

On figuring out Rudolph as game progressed…
“Yeah, I feel like I had a grip on what they were doing offensively, to put pressure on them all day. Then again, you would have to talk to the guys on the back end more about that.”

On the final drive of the game…
“It shifted again from a passing situation to a running situation. So, I had to change my game plan a bit. Up front, we did a good job of fitting our gaps. I would have to watch the film, I do not know if there was any miscommunication to where they had to fill their gaps or what was going on there, but they did not do anything special that we were not expecting.”

On feeling after the loss…
“It is disappointing. There is so much that could have come with this. I could not care less with my senior season, but right now for the team it could have done so much for us. Then, you invest so much into it. We have a bye week, so we can go back to the drawing board and see where we can go from here.”

Senior Kicker Ian Patterson
On being able to play…
“Coaches try to keep at least two guys prepared at all times. After Iowa State, I knew I probably had a shot at kicking some field goals.”

On missing a PAT but making a field goal…
“I am glad that I ended up on top, ending with a make. That being said, going into that first extra point, we knew that Oklahoma State is a very good field goal rush team, and that is something that we studied a lot. Something I struggle with at times is my op-times, so I was making sure I was in there fast, and got I there a little too fast there and hit it off my ankle. You have to deal with that, though.”

On Mitch Lochbihler…
“Mitch has a heck of a leg. We have seen him hit kickoff’s ever since he has been here like that. This week, he really put his nose to the grindstone and really worked on it. You get a guy who is six-foot-five, with that much strength and leverage, it is ridiculous what the ball can do. We are happy for him, and as long as we can keep him focused and confident, he will be very good for us.”

On thoughts during that final drive…
“It was just me and the ball, and the net. I think I hit probably 70 balls into the net I felt good, and I felt like I was ready, just hoping for a chance.”

On close loss…
“Definitely something to learn from. Obviously, the guys put everything into it. We have been working all week. Oklahoma State is always a team that we want to come in and get the win against. I think we know how good we can be, and we know that we beat ourselves. I expect us to really come back. The guys are ready to work.”

Senior Defensive Back Dante Barnett
On the bye week coming at a good time…
“I think so. Especially after a loss like this we can go in and look at our mistakes before we play another high tempo offense.”

On DJ Reed’s interception…
“It was big. Just like you said any close game that we can create turnovers that is what we want to do and just making those plays is big because he had some struggles earlier in the season but he has always been one of the players made big plays for our defense.”

On message to Reed after interception…
“Really good job. He kind of knows what he can do on the field and as long as he does it we are proud.”

Oklahoma State Head Coach Mike Gundy
On last touchdown…
“I joked with the guys, I said I wish I would have told Carson to slide on the five yard line if he gets in the open and they did not think it was very funny but you have to score when you have to score. Everybody here that watches Big 12 football knows with the quarterback play we get in this league, no lead is ever safe, that is why the games are like this. I mentioned this Monday that with Kansas State [Texas] Tech, TCU and Oklahoma, we are going to be in a battle in the fourth quarter almost every game just because of the style of play and the quarterbacks. Kansas State is more of a traditional running team but if you go and look at the history, they are pretty good in the two minute. They have always been really good and the reason why is because they are good pass protectors and their quarterback sits there, so no lead is ever safe in this conference.”

On Kansas State punting on 4th and 1…
“I do not have any grounds to doubt something that Coach [Bill] Snyder would do, I mean obviously he knows more about his team than I do. Traditionally, for years, he has played percentages. He is somewhat of a genius when it comes to that and I am guessing in his world that is what he thought was best. They had two third and shorts, I know the one you are talking about, but they had another one and both times we stuffed them. Sometimes as a head coach, just my thought is I have a hard time going for it on fourth and two if I just got stuffed on third and one unless you feel like you have some sort of a pass play.”

On late timeouts…
“We had the timeouts and we felt like they were getting to the point in the game where we could narrow it down to two or three plays based on their formation so I said why not use them and play the odds. We called timeout after they lined up and just in the history of them you know it is going to be two or three plays really because they are pretty entrenched in what they do, they always have been. That is why we used them, to try to get our guys an idea of what we thought. It does not mean we are always right, we could be wrong but I thought why not talk about it?”  

On Jerel Morrow…
“I have three sons and if they grow up and end up being like him, it would be a heck of a deal. He is first class, he has been raised the right way, comes from a great family. He is going to get his degree in four years, he plays some backup for us on defense, and he will play on every special team and you can rely on him every day of the week. He never shows up on any misses for classes, his attitude is good and you can win a lot off football games with a young man like him.”

On playing from behind…
“We have done that before, we did that last year quite a bit. I am not sure why and I certainly do not favor it but what you are saying is exactly right. We were down 13, 9, and 9 and percentages are you are not going to come back very often. We stress never showing any fear, never showing any fatigue, and never showing any frustration in our organization. Two of those came to light by not showing frustration, from the coaches or players, we are not allowed to show frustration. I thought the fatigue in the latter part of the game that we were in better condition and more fresh than they [Kansas State] were today.”

Junior quarterback Mason Rudolph
On the interceptions and coming back… 
“It was tough. I think one of those balls sat on the end and the other was a 50/50 ball trying to see who could make the play there. Regardless, our defense played great.”

On Mike Gundy saying Rudolph played better after the interceptions…
“I thought I played well all day. Obviously I had a couple mistakes but I think my reads were good. I thought our coaches made good calls. We executed for the most part. They tried to make adjustments in the second half.”

On Washington getting behind the defense on the last deep ball… 
“They stayed their base coverage. It was a last second signal to James. I credit the coaches for calling that and putting the ball in the playmaker’s hands.”

On the last scoring play for Oklahoma State…
“Our offensive line played great all day and played exceptionally well. We were trying to decipher when they were putting an extra guy in the box. Our guys had great ball security.”

Junior wide receiver James Washington
On they pull off a win after turnovers, penalties, and allowing returns
“Having composure and 100 percent effort the entire game. I felt like we never gave up. We tried to make the best of every opportunity we had on the field.” 

On Coach Gundy not liking the players feeling fear, frustration or fatigue… 
“It was hard. K-State was knocking on our door for sure. With as many leaders as we have on offense and defense, we talk each other up, and try not to think about those feelings during the game.”

On Mason Rudolph playing better after two interceptions…
“It’s going to happen. Good players are going to throw an interception. But I’m proud of him for coming back from it and never getting down.”

Junior defensive tackle Vincent Taylor
On what he was saying to his teammates on the last drive when K-State had the ball…
“I thought they were going to do a pop pass. Sterns played his position like he’s supposed to and caught the interception.”

On Jesse Ertz’s quarterback style…
“He’s a smart runner and very patient. He looks for the open gap. Going into today’s game our coaches told us to stay in our gap. I think we got out a few times but we were able to cut some runs off.”

On if Oklahoma State outlasted K-State physically… 
“We did conditioning on Sunday and I think it showed today and we kept playing through the fourth quarter.”