Oct. 27, 2013
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SAN DIEGO -
San Diego State head coach Rocky Long
On if he's had much tougher loss than this:
"Oh, I've been around losses as tough as that one, sure. I'm an old man. I've been around a lot of 'em."
On his reaction to the loss:
"I think that our team showed unbelievable spirit. I thought it was a great football, first of all. I think our team showed an unbelievable spirit.
When they return a fumble for a touchdown, we go down by 14, I would bet 95% of the teams in the country would fold at that point. Not only did we not fold, we came back and had a legitimate chance to win the game."
On if he has any second thoughts on the last 22 seconds, playing for the field goal:
"Yeah. I'd play it different if I knew we weren't going to make it. I mean, you expect guys that practice all day long every day of the week, you expect them to make a 30 something yard field goal. You have to have confidence in your kickers."
On what is the state of that confidence in those kickers today:
"These are not pro players. We're not going to cut them, get somebody off the wires, try to hire somebody else.
They're young people that make mistakes. They'll get better. You just keep working with them, just like you do a quarterback that throws an interception, or a DB that gives up a touchdown pass.
You put them back out there, keep them working, and hopefully the next time they have a chance to make one to win the game, they will."
On what he saw on the blocked field goal:
"The kick was low. It shouldn't have been blocked. If he had gotten the ball up, it wouldn't have been blocked. I don't know if it would have gone through. But it wouldn't have been blocked because you couldn't tell if it was going through or not."
On what his take was on the fumble return for a touchdown:
"I don't worry about that. They make their decisions. You live with the way the game is called."
On if he heard the whistle blow:
"If you stand on the sidelines enough, you know that officials don't blow the whistle a lot of times. Everybody just assumes the play is over. They do that on purpose. They don't blow the whistle a lot of times, and the ball is still counted as dead."
On how he thought the defense played:
"I thought until the fourth quarter the defense played them pretty good till the fourth quarter. You have to give them credit. As the fourth quarter started, they made a couple adjustments, and we weren't able to readjust what we were doing to take it away. They had more success in the fourth quarter."
On the fumble, and if there need to be more clarity on the situation:
"I think part of the whistle being blown, that's been happening for four or five years where they don't blow the whistle all the time and the ball is down.
I think everybody out there thought it was a dead ball, including them, thought it was a dead ball. And then the guy picked it up off of Ezell (Ruffin)'s chest, stood there and looked at the official. The official wasn't waving his arms so, he took off.
I mean, I think he even thought it was a dead ball, the guy that picked up the ball."
That official was on your sideline. Did he hear about your perspective:
On if he leaves the game with any positives:
"The positives I've already mentioned: where most teams would fold, our team did not. That's the positive. We still lost the game.
In my humble opinion, the only difference was they made one more play than we did. That's the only difference. Guess what? They made mistakes, too. And if you all weren't watching the same game I was watching, let me tell you, that was a great, great college football game. Great college football game.
They made one more play. That is all."
On the execution of the onside kick:
"We practice it every Thursday so if the opportunity arises, we can do it.
To be honest with you, that's as good of execution as any we've ever done in practice. Better than about 90% of the ones we've done in practice. Now that's about a 10% ratio what you saw. It looks like that in practice once in a while, but not very often."
On the decision to kick the field goal:
"I think if you look in Football Handbook 101, with nine minutes or eight minutes left on the clock, you're supposed to kick it deep, right? We don't want to abide by Football Handbook 101 at our place."
On if the initial field goal was going to be (Seamus) McMorrow all the way:
"We spent two weeks with those guys competing daily. Seamus (McMorrow) won the competition."
Fresno State Quotes
Head coach Tim DeRuyter
On what stood out about the game:
"I just think it's these (players). They trust in each other, trust the coaches and always believe. Tonight, so many different guys made plays. That's the kind of team we have. They love each other, and whatever it takes, we'll find a way. It's special when you get to coach a group like that. You have to give San Diego State credit, they had a great plan against us on both sides of the ball. Executing that pooch kick, the guy kicked it perfect. It was just one of those games where it was a heavyweight fight and both teams were landing hay-makers on each other. luckily, we threw the last one."
On the blocked field goal at the end of regulation:
"When we do our block like that, we try to get as good of a push from our line up front as we can. We set the line of scrimmage back so the guy from behind can jump vertically, because you can't jump over and land on guys. The further back you can reset that line, you get closer and the kicker has to get it up that much quicker. It was a great play, and we had guys pushing (up front) to make it a great play. I've run out of adjectives for describing this team, it's unbelievable."
On the team's offensive struggles:
"Our offense struggled in the first half, and you've got to give San Diego State credit. They did some things differently and I thought they were really aggressive in coverage. The officials were letting them play physical, and I'm a defensive coach so I can respect that. It took us a while to adjust to that, but nobody lost faith or pushed the panic button. (Quarterback) Derek Carr got into a rhythm there in the second half and we've got some really good playmakers."
On what adjustments they made offensively:
"We decided to pick the tempo up. (SDSU) was doing a good job of disguising what they were doing coverage-wise and pressure-wise. If you change the tempo on a team, they won't have a chance to do all of that disguising and bluffing."
Senior Quarterback Derek Carr
On his thoughts after an emotional victory:
"This team is resilient, and has a faith that transcends all understanding. We believe if we love each other and play for each other, it doesn't matter what the clock says and we're (the opposition) is at, we believe we can win. As (SDSU) was kicking that late field goal, nobody was worried or nervous or anything like that. It was a bunch of guys saying, 'Hey, I can't wait to watch this block.'"
On their offensives struggles in the first half:
"You've got to give so much credit to San Diego State's team and their coaches. They came out and were very emotional. They wanted to be more physical than us and all those things. This is always the most physical game I play. I've played against (SDSU) for three years now, and this is the top one on physicality. It was a wake-up call for us. Once we got some of their stunts, coverages and blitzes down in the second half, then we could get more into rhythm."
Senior tight end Marcel Jensen
On the blocked field goal at the end of regulation:
"I lined up behind two guys who were over the right guard, and they just blew him up and I was right behind them as a jumper. I just jumped straight up in the air and got my arm up. Honestly, I didn't feel I got a good jump, but I guess I got good enough extension because I've got long arms. Whatever it was, I did it."
On the offensive struggles in the first half:
"Give a lot of credit to San Diego State, they've got some players on their team. Their record doesn't speak to how good they are. They threw a couple things at us that we haven't seen on film. I think overall, that was a good team. Just give (SDSU) credit."
Sophomore linebacker Ejiro Ederaine
On the fumble return for a touchdown in the fourth quarter:
"I was pretty certain I got (the ball) out, I just wasn't really certain if the referee called it down. Once I picked (the ball) up I looked to the side official and he threw down his bean bag, but I thought he was blowing the whistle. It was kind of loud. So I was showing (the ref) the ball, and he was looking at me and I was looking at him. It was kind of awkward. I heard one of my teammates yell, 'Go,' So I started running."