Sep 7, 2013
Final Stats |
Illinois 45, Cincinnati 17
Memorial Stadium // Sept. 7, 2013 // Attendance: 43,031
Head Coach Tommy Tuberville
"Just a little bit opposite of what we saw last week. Too many mistakes and (we've) got to give Illinois a lot of credit. They did a lot of things on offense. They did a good job coaching on both sides. The misdirection got us in the first half. We have speed on defense and they got us going one way, and went the other and we weren't able to shift gears and get back. That's a good job coaching by them."
"Offensively, we couldn't help our defense. We couldn't stay on the field and get any momentum. Third down beat us in the first half and really the second half a little. The second half we just didn't have anything on third down like we should have. You've got to be able to do a better job on third down conversions on both sides on the road."
On the injury to QB Muchie Legaux:
"Muchie... it doesn't look good. I feel bad for him. He was in pretty good pain on the field and so we won't guess. We'll just have to wait and see. They took him straight to the hospital and we'll get some kind of idea of the injury here pretty soon, but I just hope that he's going to be fine and a lot of prayers going out for him."
"Unfortunately, in this game, you have injuries like that. We'll just have to regroup. We don't have a lot of quarterbacks and that's our problem. Our centers... our backup center went down and we lost a starting corner in the first half. That's what you get when you start playing teams that are physical like that back-to-back and it's tough for the kids to go through that."
Discussing Muchie's third-quarter goal-line TD that was overturned by replay:
"He said he got over and they pulled it out. You know, replay has got to be conclusive and nobody could tell. I mean, he said he got it across and one of their guys ripped it out in the end zone. Unfortunately they reversed it, but it's got to be conclusive. It's just unfortunate something like that happens."
Discussing the momentum change after the goal-line stand:
"Well we're in striking distance and we've scored twice in a row and still got about seven minutes to go in the third quarter and they hadn't made a first down. Pretty much it just took the air out of us. And we got the ball back and it goes against us too, so it is what it is. When you're on the road, you got to play and you can't worry about anything like that. You got to pick up, and when things happen, you got to go with it and make sure that next time you make it no doubt."
Discussing the upfront battle on both sides and Illinois QB Nathan Scheelhaase:
"In the middle of the fourth quarter both teams had about the same amount of yardage and they had one turnover, they did, and we had too many penalties and it was on third down. They did a great job. Their quarterback out of the pocket did a great job of getting one receiver and finding him out of the pocket and making the play and keeping the chains going. We just had a tough time staying up with him and covering receivers for an extra two or three seconds. Their receivers did a good job of just keeping on running routes and he was able to find them."
RB Ralph David Abernathy
On the overturned touchdown call and momentum swing:
"Well someone once told me momentum is for the weak-minded, so you kind of just have to bounce back regardless. You try to stay even keel. There's going to be highs and lows, but you just try to stay right in the middle."
On QB Munchie Legaux's injury:
"You know you see freak injuries like that on TV all the time, but it's different when it happens to your brother. It affects some people differently, but I personally wanted to be out there to support him. He was our starting quarterback and we're all family so it's sad to see something like that happen. If he's out for the season, we're going to dedicate this season to him."
LB Greg Blair
On Cincinnati's defensive struggles:
"I would say a big problem for us today was discipline. We didn't read our keys well, we didn't execute the called plays well, and it was just a bad game for the defense. Now we have to get better and move forward. We need to have a short memory. It's football and it's about wins and losses, and we've just got to learn from our mistakes and work to get better everyday. We can't dwell on the past, what's done is done."
On failing to stop the Illini from converting third downs:
"Third downs were what really hurt us in today's game. I don't how many times they converted for a third down, but I probably remember five times when we were on the field on third down and we couldn't stop Illinois. That only leads to bad things and we have to become better with that. I always stress on third down, play the sticks. Even if they catch the ball, you tackle them before the sticks and it's fourth down. We just didn't do that today."
WR Anthony McClung
On QB Munchie Legaux's injury:
"What happened to Munchie, you don't wish that on anybody in the country. Munchie's my best friend and my roommate so I hate to see that happen. We talk everyday and he's worked so hard to win the quarterback spot. Munchie got hurt and prayers go out to him, but we've also got to move forward and Brendon's a good quarterback too."
On refocusing after today's loss:
"We just beat ourselves today. We were 3-for-13 on third downs and had almost 50 yards in penalties. That can't happen if you want to win the game. So we'll get it corrected and be back next week."
Head Coach Tim Beckman
"I'll just start it off with, I want to congratulate this football team. I want to congratulate this coaching staff. It was four quarters of football. The way they prepared from Sunday until this afternoon, all the way up to kickoff time, it was a team win and it was a coaching staff win that had nothing to do with me. It's got everything to do with these players. They believe in what we're doing and I think you can see a little bit of that today. We still have a long ways to go, there's no question about that. But all in all, it was definitely a team effort and I couldn't be more proud."
On his viewpoint of Cincinnati quarterback Munchie Legaux's injury:
"Well, I saw it; I saw it immediately. It was definitely one of those injuries that you know you've seen on (Joe) Theismann and those types of injuries. So I wanted to get out there to him as quickly as I could. I think that he was in pain, there's no question. But they took care of him and got him off, and hopefully we'll all pray that he's healthy."
On Bill Cubit and the efficient offense:
"Bill Cubit has always been successful and has always done a great job with our offense. It's still about him putting our players in position for making plays. We just call the plays; the players are the ones who run the plays. I think Bill would be the first on to tell you that, too. Bill is an outstanding offensive mind, there's no question. And in my opinion, that's why I brought him here. He's the best that I've been coaching against or been around."
On the goal-line stand and whether he thought the play would be overturned:
"I did (think the touchdown would be overturned). I mean, I didn't think he was in. I was going to challenge it if it wasn't reviewed because I didn't think he got in. I thought V'Aangelo (Bentley) came in there with that second hit; really, it was a third (hit) that really kind of forced that ball out.
On the big plays of the game:
"I will say this, and I wrote this down during the football game. On the first TD series, Miles Osei made a third-down-and-eight, got hit about five, and then fought for three more yards to get the first down. On the second series, (Martize) Barr had a catch on third-and-long to keep that series going. On the third series, (Steve) Hull's block on the reverse and Barr's third-down catch. On the fourth series, that was, of course, a 99-yard series where we drove it down and scored after the goal-line stand this defense had. The fifth, there was a huge catch by Steve Hull on third down. And, of course, on the sixth one, we had the big catch by No. 7 (Martize Barr) on the corner route. It was players making plays. If you're going to continue drives, you have to be successful on third downs. We practice that. We talk about it. We won third downs today and we also won the turnover battle today. There's reasons you win and I definitely believe that."
On Nathan Scheelhaase's performance today:
"You know, I know Nate's had it. He went through some situations last year with injuries and fought through it and competed through it. I really enjoy being around Nate. It doesn't surprise me. Nate Scheelhaase is in our office first thing tomorrow morning. He'll be studying this football game. He loves the game. But all of our players are that way. And that's why it's so unique about coming to this office in Memorial Stadium each week to see these guys, because they are willing to try to make this program as good as they possibly can."
QB Nathan Scheelhaase
On the game:
"I think it's always going to be a lot more fun when we're out there executing. I thought we responded better and we had a plan and plays that we really liked. And when those plays were called and the guys really came up on big plays, that's really great to see."
On the 99-yard drive and its significance:
"That was huge. I mean, our defense getting that stop down there, I thought they played great in the red zone all day long and when we had them...You know, it was six, seven, eight plays down there and they had to do everything they could to get down there. As an offensive player, you know they're kind of in trouble because they shot off a lot of bullets at that point, but getting a big stop by our defense was huge. The first thing you want to do when you get back out on the field is get that first down and I think after we got that, you saw great execution. Right when we needed a stop by our defense, we got a stop, and right when we needed a big drive by our offense, we got one. We had guys stepping up at crucial moments and that was great to see."
WR Steve Hull
On the win:
"This win for us is spectacular and that's what we're going to focus on today. Tomorrow, we are going to focus back on Washington and keep moving forward."
On how close-knit the team is:
"Absolutely, the team is close. If you listen to our sidelines, you can tell the energy and passion are a lot different and no matter who is being successful, we're all ecstatic. No matter what happens in the game or who is against us, we're very positive and pick each other back up. It's a much different environment and we've become a lot closer (as a) team."
On if this win feels different considering Cincinnati is a BCS team:
"Yeah, it does, especially since we were such underdogs coming into it. But I think what made us feel a lot better, at least personally, is that we finished the game the way we wanted to and that was by grinding the ball out, throwing screen passes, and bubbles and just letting DY (Donovonn Young) run down hill."
On what was the key defensively:
"Two goal line stands. We had a lot of young guys in there at that time, but they stepped up and we handled business and I think that is going to be a staple on defense this year. We just did what we had to do. We have great coaches and they scout these guys like no other. I mean, we have tip sheets, so they prepare us well. We just go out there and make the plays we need to make."
On being the underdogs going into the game:
"No one really gives us a chance, which is nothing new here. It's been that way almost all of my four years here and it's something we work hard every day to try and change."