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K-State Holds Weekly Football Press Conference


GO WILDCATS
Nigel Malone

GO WILDCATS
Nigel Malone
GO WILDCATS

Oct. 23, 2012

Head Coach Bill Snyder
On comparing Ty Zimmerman to former K-State defensive back Jaime Mendez…
“Well, the fact that both of them are instinctive players. I think Jaime had a great feel for the game. I think Ty has a very positive feel for the game as well. Not just from their position standpoint but a collective vision of both offense and defense. Both of them were good leaders in terms of being able to help give guidance and direction to their teammates on the field. Both of them are young guys who worked hard and did everything right.”

On how the three new defensive coaches for Texas Tech have changed the defensive scheme…
“They are extremely high-quality coaches, and they have made a major difference in the defensive structure of Texas Tech. When they first came, we went back and researched North Carolina a little bit during the spring and during the summer, but they have altered the structure of the defense, and I think they have them playing well fundamentally. That is a great asset for them. They play hard, which is also a great asset, and they are awfully good about not giving up substantial plays. I think they play an aggressive style of defense from their front to the back end. They have some players in the program who were not there last year – young guys and community college transfers as well. A couple of freshmen have made contributions. There are just all those things that are mingled that have made them a very successful defensive football team – right now, the No. 1 defensive unit in the conference.”

On the significance of holding the first seven opponents under 21 points…
“Well, I think it’s significant in this day and age, and certainly it just addresses the somewhat continued improvement that we have made on that side of the ball. I think we have gradually gotten a little better and a little better, and that’s again newer guys fitting in with the older guys, becoming a little more acclimated to what we are doing. The experience of playing a variety of different types of offensive schemes, you know, granted that most everybody is spread out but you get to see both. The more snaps that you take, the more of variety of different schemes that you see and become acclimated to. If you see something for the first time, it is a little more difficult to respond to than it is if you have seen it time and time again. It is just a natural habit of improving over the course of the year.”

On if this year’s defense is the most disciplined and sound in his career…
“They are becoming more disciplined. We are not where we need to be by any stretch. We are certainly more and more sound, and I think that comes with a variety of different things, how players respond to what you are trying to do. I think coaches are always going to have a sound structure to what you do. I do not think there is any time that we have not been sound in terms of our structure. The important thing is to teach well enough that young people can respond on what their responsibilities are, and the fundamentals of the game. I think we are getting better and better at that. Our coaches have done a tremendous job of coaching the fundamentals of the game and a tremendous job of putting our players in as good of a position as they can to be successful. At the end of the day, your players have to respond to that, and they have gotten better and better at that. I thought that to hold West Virginia to zero scores for 52-and-a-half minutes on defense is really a feather in the hat, but that was last week and has nothing to do with what happens today or this weekend.”

On the reason that the offense has been efficient…
“I think the umbrella to all of it is virtually the same thing. I think it is their approach to the game and to their preparation. I think it is how their coaches prepare them. Schematically, what they put on the field, how the players execute, and we have, like defense, good young players. It is just a matter to do what you do as well as you can and do it the right way without the mental errors that take place from time to time. I thought our players responded well in this past ball game in that regard, but again, there is an awful lot of improvement that they need to make.”

On moving Ty Zimmerman from quarterback to defensive back as a freshman…
“It was my feeling that he had the skill to play that position and play very quickly. You would love to have a variety of quarterbacks in different positions, and that happens to be one of them. What I appreciated about Ty so much was he has a tremendous capacity to be able to have a global understanding of both defenses and offenses, and coming from the offensive side of the ball to defense, you have a better understanding, particularly at that position, of what offenses do and what they are trying to do and how they go about doing it. That is certainly a great asset of the position that he plays.”

On Ty Zimmerman’s interceptions…
“He is an instinctive football player, and that is what I kind of meant by all of that. He just has a good perception of what is taking place and what is going to take place. As he goes through more repetitions, he gets a little bit better at it, and he is a better player today than he was last season. He is a better player today than he was at the beginning of the season. He has committed to that kind of improvement that we talk about all the time. So he has a lot of things going for him right now.”

On Nick Puetz returning to action…
“Nick did well. There is still some rust there, as would be anticipated, and as I said, I think after the ball game someone asked a similar question. He really did not have an opportunity to be full scale in any of the practices and just started practice Tuesday of last week, if I remember correctly, so you would anticipate that he would be a little rusty, and he was.”

Senior Quarterback Collin Klein
On why the offense has been efficient…
“I think we are just at times able to execute with 11 guys on certain plays. I know every run play on paper, if you block it perfectly, it should have a chance to go the distance, and you would like to say that every pass play that you have, if you hit them on time in the open field, then you would like to be able to score. I think it just comes down to our coaches putting us in good position to succeed and players making plays when the time comes and doing that over a period of time.”

On playmakers on offense…
“We have a lot of weapons. It helps everybody when you have a lot of guys that are able to contribute and make those plays. It’s a fun group to be a part of.”

On the team chemistry…
“We are a team that cares about each other – that’s on the field, but more importantly, it’s off the field. We understand that we are just a bunch of guys here trying to be the best that we can be. We are trying to help each other in the process. It’s something we’re always striving for. I wouldn’t say right now that we are too unified of a group or have reached that point of, ‘we’ve really come together now.’ We still need to keep coming even closer together on and off the field. We’ve made some strides. We have a lot of quality people to work with on our team. It makes a huge difference.”

On seeing Ty Zimmerman mature since his freshman year…
“He has always been mature. He obviously has a very good mind for the game as far as knowing what is going on around him and what he and his unit are trying to accomplish. He just plays extremely hard and makes plays. He makes a lot of plays all over the field. He makes tackles for loss and still is able to cover and be back where he needs to. He is an amazing player.”

Senior Linebacker Arthur Brown
On the team’s performance against West Virginia…
“I think our performance is due to our preparation throughout practice and being able to see our performance. It is really just the confirmation that we need to continue to be successful throughout the season.”

On West Virginia compared to Texas Tech…
“In some cases, yes, they are similar. They have similar styles of offense. The dynamics or the personnel is a little different.”

Senior Defensive Back Nigel Malone
On playing at home for the first time in two weeks…
“It is good. It is a homecoming game and everyone is excited for it. It is good to be back at home.”

On this year’s team…
“I have never been on a team like this before. It is the best thing that Coach (Bill Snyder) does for us. He keeps us level headed and makes sure we stay disciplined. We come in here after a big win, and we are still going to run wind sprints on Monday.”

Sophomore Wide Receiver Curry Sexton
On Texas Tech looking like a changed defense from last year…
“Everybody is accustom to Texas Tech being a high-flying offense similar to what we saw last week, similar to what you see in the Big 12, but what is different with Texas Tech this year compared to the past is that they have a really solid defense. We are not just up here saying that. Their defense leads the Big 12 in most statistical categories, and they have been playing well across the board. I think that is the biggest difference. They have playmakers on the defensive side of the ball. Not only do they have a good offense, but they have a good defense to go with it. That is why they have had the success that they have.”

On being excited to come back home…
“It’s been two tough weeks on the road and going all the way out to the east coast. That is a long trip. Obviously Iowa State is a tough place to play. Being able to come back here in front of our fans, and I know our fans are going to be riled up. They have not seen us in several weeks now, and we are definitely ready to be back home. It will definitely be a welcoming experience.”

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