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K-State Weekly Football Press Conference


GO WILDCATS
Jonathan Truman

GO WILDCATS
Jonathan Truman
GO WILDCATS
• Gametracker vs. Oklahoma

Oct. 25, 2011

Head Coach Bill Snyder
On if the players are cognizant of the magnitude of this game...
"I think they are. It is not like there are seven weeks of preparation and then there is an isolated week. We still have to prepare the same way we have always done. Whether that is good or bad, I do not know, but that is the way we know how to do it. It does not mean that this is another game. They all understand the significance of the ballgame and the tremendous team that we are playing, but how you prepare does not or should not really change."

On if beating Oklahoma in previous years affects the team...
"Schematically, no. The idea that we have won a few games, I do not know how that impacts our players. Again, for the same reason, what I try to share with our football team and the players in the room is that this is their team, and whatever happened two years ago was another team and what happened two years before, etcetera - those are other teams. It really does not have an impact on how this group prepares and how they play. They are their own team. They want to be their own team. That is important for them."

On recruiting and developing junior-college players...
"There are no secrets, I can assure you that. We do not do anything that is any different than anybody else. We have had good fortune with a lot of our youngsters - whether they were transfer students or came straight out of high school. You talk about that segment, but everybody has that segment of their program. You look at ours and you look at a true freshman, Tyler Lockett, playing as well as he has been playing - some people want to say that is kind of unique but that is just a way. You take a freshman, a walk-on like B.J. Finney who is a starter and is playing reasonably well. Here is a transfer student in Jordan Voelker who is a defensive end who walked on to our program and did not go on scholarship until a couple weeks ago who has been a starter and a mainstay with our defense. You can address four-year transfer students who have come in and played and have had success in our program. You can take community college guys that have come either with or without scholarships and have had success. You can look at the high school guys. It is a blend. To me, what is important is the fact that everybody is on the same page. There is an open-arm attitude by the young people in your program that is willing to reach out to each and every individual who comes into your program, no matter what their background is. We like to have good, young people in our program. Good, young people mesh together and create a better environment, a family-type environment. Being able to receive other guys that come from schools is, I think, really significant and very, very beneficial. It does not work if that does not happen."

On the mindset of the team...
"I have not really thought about that. I think they are a bunch of young guys who seemingly understand the value, kind of laying the foundation brick-by-brick and trying to make the effort to do some of the things we ask in regards to daily and weekly improvement. I think they are a bunch of young guys who have gained over a period of time, and rightfully they should, a varying degree of confidence, and yet have not gotten to that overconfident stage in regard to their being, and where they have to be and what their place in football society is today. I would characterize them as very, very good young guys. Young guys, who care about each other, work well together. They always try to do the right things."

On Oklahoma's wide receivers...
"I do not know if we have matched up with any wide receivers so far. We are not real big on the edge, but they have played reasonably well. Oklahoma is a different story. They have some very good, young guys. You know, the youngster from Baylor, (Kendall) Wright, was a very talented wide receiver with tremendous speed. He has two or three inches on us. He is not the only one. A bunch of other guys who have catches, including the tight end who they will flex off and give you the appearance that they are playing with four wide receivers, and he is one of them - they like to get the ball to him and he does a nice job. Those are not easy matchups for us."

On if the secondary is improving...
"For the most part. We have had the ball thrown against us now. It is not like we have shut everybody out. We have done a better job in terms of our pass rush. That has not always resulted in sacks, but I believe we are ahead of where we were last year. I think we disrupt throws sometimes. That helps our secondary and our pass coverage. I think our youngsters are good about being where they are supposed to be. Our discipline in the back end has been good."

On the offense's performance against Kansas...
"You take the kickoff return out of the mix, and we scored on seven consecutive possessions. They had to be doing something right. I think there was a balance between running and the pass - we did not throw it as much in the second half for obvious reasons, but I think there was in the first half. We created a little more balance. I think we are a better football team when we have more balance in our offense. I think that is where we were in that point in time. They have improved very well. They have gotten better game in and game out. I think we certainly recognized that. They have become a more disciplined group, game in and game out. It works on that kind of scale. But, we were fortunate not to have any offensive penalties last week - not like we have had a lot of offensive penalties, we have not, but we have had some in some critical situations. We have kept it down. Most of them normally end up with your offensive line, either illegal procedure or holding. We have limited those a great deal. That speaks to the discipline that they are gaining. They play together well. There is a thing about offensive lineman together anywhere in the country - they kind of bond together and they communicate well and work well together well on the field. It is like the right hand knowing what the left hand is doing. They always have to have a good understanding of what all five guys are doing. If you do not, you might have some missed assignments, which they are pretty good about not doing."

Quarterback Collin Klein
On the season thus far...
"It has been an awesome journey so far. We have really come together in a very special way, and I know that we can definitely continue that improvement. At this point, we just need to keep focus on the next step, and there will be a time where we can look back and see that it has been pretty special, but it is not over yet. The job is not done and we have to make sure that we keep our nose to the grindstone and not look too far ahead or back behind to distract us."

On his play so far this season...
"I would say it is improving. It is one of those deals where I can tell you more at the end of the season when everything is said and done. I have been able to make some improvements, but I still have a lot of room to improve. Coach Snyder instills and has instilled into me and all of us that it is the focus that we need to have, that there is better out there and it is just about going out and getting it."

Offensive Lineman B.J. Finney
On the improvement and characteristics of the offensive line...
"Toughness. We have had our ups and downs and the thing that has gotten us through is being tough and coming to work every day and never giving up the fight."

On focusing week by week...
"I think that we have done fairly well on just focusing on one game at a time, day by day, improving upon our mistakes and preparing for each team."

On the Oklahoma defense...
"They come off of the ball low, they are fast, they play hard, and they never really give in. It is going to be a handful for the whole four quarters."

Defensive Back Nigel Malone
On seeing anything that Texas Tech's defense exposed of Oklahoma's offense...
"I do not know about exposing, but I know that they had a lot of opportunities to get interceptions off of tipped balls. I hope that that is something that we have the opportunity to do in the upcoming game."

On the Oklahoma wide receivers...
"I think (Ryan) Broyles is probably the most productive college football receiver by his stats. So that speaks for its self, and Kenny Stills is a young guy up and coming, but he also has a lot of talent. He can go out there and make plays just as well as Broyles can."

Defensive Back Tysyn Hartman
On what he thinks Oklahoma football stands for...
"Tradition. I mean they have been good. They have always been good as far back as we can remember. They have a tradition of winning and have been coached well, great athletes, and great players."

On expecting a physical game...
"Yeah definitely. I had the opportunity to play them twice and that is what it was. Running the ball or passing the ball, they like to do those things at will. They are coached up and execute and can do that whenever they want to."

On preparing for a top-10 team...
"We try to prepare the same week in and week out. We are into making ourselves better. We are playing nameless faces, and that is the way we approach it each week whether we are playing KU, OU or anybody else in the conference."

Linebacker Jonathan Truman
On the preparations this week...
"The team is just like normal. We are just practicing like any other game. I know it is a big game this week, but we are just going to do what we do and work hard on the field and off the field and get prepared for Saturday."

On the excitement of K-State football...
"We try to not listen to all of that talk. There is a lot of positive talk now that we are 7-0, but there is still a lot of negative talk. We just try to do our thing in Vanier and just shut off the outside world a little bit."

On the performance of Tyler Lockett...
"We are really proud of Tyler and our whole kickoff return unit as a whole. They get all of their blocking schemes, and it takes all 11 guys to get him out of the gate and into the end zone. We are really proud of him."

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