Postgame Quotes: Maryland 43, FIU 10

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COLLEGE PARK, Md. - Postgame quotes following Maryland's 43-10 win over FIU.

Maryland Head Coach Randy Edsall

Opening Statement:

“Very pleased with our win today. Also, very pleased with the students who came out to support their fellow classmates on the field today, so really appreciate that they were out there in large numbers and hopefully we can get them back out there. They were there early and all those things, so that was good. Anytime you win 43-10 you’re going to be happy, but there is also as we go back and take a look at the film there is going be a lot of things we can coach up and get better and that’s the thing a like about this team. Just being in the locker room here with them at halftime and then at the end of the game. We set out what we wanted to do, which was to get a win and take a look at things we thought could help us in all three phases. But as you go down there those guys know that they didn’t play their best game, they know that it’s a start, they know that they’re going to continue to get better. As they watch the film and everything else it will be a good learning experience as we move forward.”

Thoughts on how quarterback C.J. Brown played today:

“C.J. was very good. I wouldn’t say outstanding because there were a few reads that he could’ve done a little bit better with in terms of some of the zone reads and things, but I thought he played very well, I thought he played with great confidence and for me as a coach it didn’t surprise me. Watching him in practice, all preseason, just seeing how focused he was and how he was executing on the field, I’m just thrilled for the young man. I’m just thrilled for him to be able to come back and have this kind of game to open the season. The thing is he’ll be better the week after and everything else. I mean five touchdowns and what he did running the ball and throwing the ball and the accuracy with which he did it, and just watching him move out there and taking some hits and doing the things we expect out of the quarterback was really neat to see and
I was really happy for him.”

On how the defense played today:

Well, I thought it was guys just doing their job. We were put in some tough positions defensively with the turnovers. The one thing that I thought is we didn’t tackle particularly well, but when we had guys running to the football, that makes the difference. Because when we sit down and grade the film, there are going to be missed tackles, but when you have guys flying around to the ball and I thought that was the big thing, we were playing with a lot of enthusiasm, you know a lot of effort on defense. So sometimes the missed tackles hurt you as much because you got guys flying around and that’s what we’ve been emphasizing during preseason camp. But then again I think it’s a group that enjoys playing together, it’s a group that communicates with each other very well. I felt they played well, but I think there are some things we could still get better at.”

On quarterback C.J. Brown’s mindset before the game:

“No, I didn’t see anything, I thought he was pretty calm. I saw his dad at the hotel before the game. I think his dad was more nervous than C.J. But last night in the team meeting I said something about him in front of the whole team. I said I know you’re chomping at the bit to play and he just had this big smile on his face. So no, he probably had butterflies like we all do, I mean shoot I had butterflies today. If you don’t before you go play a game, you might as well not be involved in playing the game. But again we ask him the plays that he likes to run and we kind of started out the game with the plays that he started to run to make him feel comfortable.”

On how the offensive line performed today:

“I think the offense live got a passing grade today, just being on the sidelines. There are some things from a technique standpoint that we have to get better at. A couple times on some outside runs we should have been cutting a guy and we didn’t cut the guy and those guys made some plays. But then again, I think for their first game for some of them, they did a good job. I mean again I think they will only get better. But again there are some things we have to do better technically that will allow us to be better than what we were today.”

On defensive back Will Likely fumbling the first punt:

“That’s my fault. Will shouldn’t have been back there returning that punt in the first place. Somebody made a substitution to put him back there and I looked there and should’ve taken a timeout because that wasn’t the way it was supposed to be. And I talked to that person the person that did that and he understands that he doesn’t make those decisions, but again that’s my responsibility as head coach so I take full blame for that. And what I told Will was this, in that whole situation, Will was following the ball off the punter’s foot, got himself in position and what he did is, he took his eye off the ball to see where the rush was. And a little bit more wind here than in high school and the punts are a little bit higher here than in high school, so by the time he got his eyes back to the ball, the ball had drifted to his right and now he was not in position to catch the ball. And again, Will will never make that mistake again, I can guarantee you, but that is totally on me as a head coach because something happened that should’ve happened and that’s my fault.”

On putting quarterback Caleb Rowe in the second half:

“We ended up making a decision toward the end of the week, that if we were going to use a No. 2 two it was going to be Caleb. There were some things that I have seen out of him in practice that I thought we were going go in that direction and we will probably have a little more definitive things on Tuesday with that. I just saw some things in practice that allowed him to be the No. 2 guy and I still have confidence in Ricardo [Young], but you have to be able to make those decisions and have guys get the reps and go in there because I think it’s more defined for the people going in there and for us as a team.”


On wide receiver Deon Long’s performance and how having wide receiver Stefon Diggs opens things up for other offensive players:

“As I’ve been saying since we had the opportunity to bring Deon here, I think it was going to be an added weapon for us offensively and now when you can get him on one side and Stefon on the other, it makes you pretty dangerous. Deon’s very talented as you can see. He runs great routes and if you put the ball near him, he’s going to catch it. He’s got the ability to go deep, great body control, good hands. The thing that happens is when you play, when they started off playing, they were doing some things where it allowed us to go to Deon a little bit more, but then after we did they started to roll the coverage that way, which opens up some other things. Having him out there is a big advantage for us because it allows us to do even more things but also to be able to get him the ball. When you start running some of the options, now you got a chance to hit some big plays with him and Stefon. Deon complements Stefon very well, Stefon complements Deon very well. We’re fortunate to have both of them.”

On getting off to a good start with important games ahead:

“That’s one of the things I was hoping we were going to be allowed to do after preseason. I was a little nervous going through preseason camp because we had some guys that were nicked and banged up. Deon [Long] was one and we had some depth problems at receiver, at offensive line, at running back. We didn’t have the depth problems on the defensive side of the ball. I was kind of concerned going into this game because I probably did the least amount of scrimmaging during preseason that I’ve ever done as a head coach. I wasn’t sure how our guys would react in doing you that but they came out and did that. The one thing is when you can sit there knowing that you have Deon Long, Stefon Diggs, Dave Steinbaugh, Nigel King, C.J. Brown, Brandon Ross, Albert Reid, and some young guys at receiver that can come along. The left side of your line is guys that played. You got some babies on the right side that you got to nurture and bring along. But when you have those kind of weapons, it makes you feel more secure as a coach because the problems that you know you can present to the defenses that you have and then be able to know that on defense that you have a lot of guys who have played that you can get a rotation going and it’s a group that really plays well together and you know that hopefully in a week or two you’re going to get a fifth-year senior graduate student from Houston back in the rotation up front, it’s a lot more comforting then what was previously happening. Today I took the redshirt off of Moise Larose, put him in at right tackle. He’s going to have to play. It’s a long season. We played quite a few freshmen today. I think every guy played except probably one that I was thinking might play was DeAndre Lane. But it’s a long season so I got to know that we have people in place, but I’m not going to get caught shorthanded knowing that I got guys sitting there that if I could bring them along and bring them some time and hopefully the situation doesn’t come, but if it does, knowing that they’re going to be prepared. That’s part of building the depth that we’re trying to build here. We’re getting a lot closer to being where we need to be. We’re not there yet but that’s why we had to play some of these freshmen today.”

On watching the offense operate with an experienced quarterback:

“Well it makes you sleep better at night that’s for sure. I slept pretty good last night. I’m out there every day with these guys and I just see how they handle themselves. Your quarterback sets the tempo for who you are as a team. Just not only his abilities but how he handles himself and C.J. [Brown] handles himself so beautifully in terms of how he conducts his own life and his character, integrity, and everything that’s about him. That just rubs off on other people. It’s very comforting to know that you have that guy that’s there. Caleb’s grown up as well. He was out there today, now it wasn’t as much of a pressure packed situation for him, but I saw him handling the huddle better and handling that situation better than what he did a year ago. Experience is a great teacher for us all. Counting on guys who have played and who have been there, and who are competitive and talented, it makes me much more reassured that you have a chance to have some success.”

Maryland Players

Senior Quarterback C.J. Brown

On the game:

“I was excited to get back out there with the guys and compete.”

On his five touchdowns:

“It’s all about visualization and going out there and doing the plays and executing. That’s what we did as a team today and it feels really good.”

On having fun:

“It was a lot of fun. When you’re going out there and scoring points, making plays and everyone is contributing. It was a lot of fun on the offensive side of the ball and the defense was flying around as well.”

On his 29-yard touchdown run:

“That’s always a great thing when everyone makes the blocks and I make the right read and soon enough you’re dancing in the end zone celebrating with you teammates.”

On playing for the first time since November 2011:

“After the first series, all the nerves and cobwebs were off. I was definitely nervous to get back out there. It had been a year. From riding the bus and coming down and participating in pregame warmups and going out there and having fun and executing; I couldn’t ask for anything better.”

On the offensive line:

“I think they did great. They changed up the looks a little bit. We made changes at halftime and even during the second quarter they came out with three-down looks and we had to change our protections but everything ran smoothly today. Everyone did great up front and the whole offense did well.”

On Stefon Diggs and Deon Long:

“As you could see today, they’re a handful for the defense. Get the ball in their hands and they’ll make plays and that’s all I did today. Just go out there and make plays and put the ball in the playmakers’ hands.”

Sophomore Receiver Stefon Diggs

On if he could sense CJ Brown’s excitement in the huddle:

“He was really excited to be back out there and I was excited for him. I knew he was going to do well and perform at the top of his game. He brought his ‘A’ game today ad he will do that every week.”

On how well the offense played:

“It was different from our opening game last year. This year we came out stronger, we came out executing better, and we ended up with the ‘W’. Everyone just did a great job and we will continue to get better for Old Dominion next week.”

On Deon Long’s performance and their compatibility:

“Deon [Long] is an explosive receiver. He will cause a lot of problems for the defense and we both open up a lot of things for each other. As a group they can’t shut us both down. We also have Nigel King who is going to make an impact.”

Junior Defensive Linemen Darius Kilgo

On forcing seven first half three-and-outs:

“That’s very big. We had to come out and execute early and it was good that we were able to come out and establish three-and-outs immediately. We felt pretty good about it because we were able to allow the offense to come out and put points on the board.”

On the key to the pass rush:

“Just getting to the backfield, you know. Just getting the feature man to the backfield, and getting the quarterback on the ground. He’s a good rushing quarterback so we didn’t want to give him the opportunity to run.”

On beginning the season with a bang:

“It’s definitely great. It’s a great feeling. We haven’t really accomplished what we want to accomplish yet, but we are on the way to getting there.”

Junior Wide Receiver Deon Long

On playing football for Maryland:

“It felt good just to be back out there playing Division I football. Just showing what hard work can do.”

On his 25-yard TD pass in the second quarter:

“It was an ‘ooze-out’ play, a feel-your-way play, so the defense can key on Stefon—and they keyed on him—so it was meant for the safety to bite, but he didn’t, so I actually had to run with speed to catch the ball.”

On his chemistry with quarterback C.J. Brown:

“[We’ve] had chemistry since the first seven-on-seven. During the summer we’d come out here on Sundays and probably Saturday nights sometime, turn the lights on the field and get working. C.J.’s an athlete, so regardless if we took a month off, we wouldn’t lose much of what we have, chemistry-wise.”

On playing opposite Stefon Diggs:

“It’s just motivation. At any moment he can take a pass to the house for a touchdown, so I’ve got to make the best of my opportunities.”


FIU Head Coach Ron Turner

Opening statement:

“I thought we’d come out and play better early. I don’t know what we did. I didn’t recognize the offense, and I didn’t recognize the defense early. We didn’t do it in any phase. We busted coverages; we busted responsibilities; we just didn’t execute. It’s about doing your job, doing your job and executing what we do offensively and defensively, and we just didn’t do it in any phase in the first half. I know we’ve got a lot of young guys and a lot of first time players, but we’ve got a job to do and we’ve got to go out and do it. It wasn’t because of lack of want-to or will, but that’s not enough. You’ve got to do your job, and in the first half we didn’t do it. We gave them too much. We gave them opportunities and they took advantage of them.”

On what he told his team at halftime:

“I told them they’ve got to come out and do their job. What we did there was totally unacceptable. We made the calls, and they guys weren’t running the defense that was called, or busting the assignments offensively that we’ve done over and over. I told them, give ourselves a chance. We didn’t give ourselves a chance in the first half. If we get beat, we get beat, but we’ve got to give ourselves a chance.”

On if the environment forced their mistakes:

“I think it’s a combination of things. We’ve got a lot of young guys that had never played before that were probably trying to do too much. We had some guys that were undisciplined and did not execute what they were supposed to execute. Maryland did a good job to take advantage of it. We came out in the second half and avoided some of that stuff as far as the execution part of it. We’ve got to come out in the beginning and do that.”

On why he replaced Jake Medlock with EJ Hilliard:

“[Medlock] was taking some pretty good shots and we wanted to give EJ a look and see where we are. At that point in the game, we just tried to give ourselves a spark to get something going and we went with EJ.”

On Maryland quarterback C.J. Brown:

“They executed their offense very well. He did a nice job and made some very good plays running the ball and throwing the ball. There were times when we gave him some things with blown assignments, but there were also times when our guys did a nice job and he made some good plays. He’s a good player.”


FIU Players

Senior Defensive End Isame Faciane

On the first half:

“It looked like people were too anxious, too excited and focusing on other things.  We just didn’t focus on our job in the first half and their players were in the right moment at the right time.  Things just got out of hand.”

On how they felt coming into the game: 

“It just didn’t happen in the first half.  When we went into the locker room at halftime, we told everyone to do their job.  We came out in the second half and only gave up three points.”

On giving up a touchdown after they just scored: 

“Things just kept snowballing on top of the little things.  Basically we didn’t capitalize on mistakes the other team had.”

On how to keep up their spirits after the game: 

“We have to put this game behind us and have a better game next week against UCF.”

Redshirt Junior Quarterback Jake Medlock

On the first half: 

“We just had a rough start.  Maryland just played better than us.  You saw the scoreboard, they just played better and we’ll come out and play better next week.”

On what went wrong:

“We didn’t run the offense we’ve been practicing all week and we struggled today.  I know were a young group, but we can’t fall back and make that excuse anymore.”

On his reaction on coach benching him: 

“I was mad.  I know why he did it.  They let EJ get some reps and let him go.  We just gotta make it better.  No matter whether I’m on the field or off the field I’m going to be a leader.  It’s only week one, we still have eleven more weeks to go.”

On the players’ mood after the game:

“We were mad, we know we can do better.  When things get worse, we fall back on each other.  We can point fingers and we have to face adversity.  We have to get ready for UCF because it’s a big rivalry game.”