Sept. 19, 2009
COLLEGE PARK, Md. - Postgame quotes following Maryland's 32-31 loss to Middle Tennessee State.
Maryland Head Coach Ralph Friedgen
On what went wrong:
"We made so many mistakes. I thought our defense played well but we gave up too many big plays, and that's what we have to stop doing. I give them credit because they executed when they had to and they beat us."
On the loss:
"It was a very disappointing loss. I really wanted us to win this football game. Our guys just didn't seem that into it. We played a little better the second half, but the problem we had is when we turned the ball over, three of them led to scores. That's what killed us."
"I give credit to the kids that kept fighting for it to be a close game because when you turn the ball over four times, you usually get blown out."
"I know our defense was tired. I thought they sucked it up and got some really good stops but they needed to have one more and we would have won."
"I was hoping this game would help us regain confidence. With success comes confidence. I am going to go back and start getting real tough - we are going to do things the right way. We are going to play better next week, I promise you. I am not going to worry about guys' legs or how they feel, they need to worry about how I'm feeling. We are going back to work."
On offensive line and Da'Rel Scott:
"I didn't think it was consistent enough. Da'Rel (Scott) fumbled two times. You can't do that, it can't happen."
"If we didn't make the mistakes, I could live with it and I think we would have won the football game. I still have a lot of belief in them as people and as players. I think they are just as upset as I am. We have to figure out a way together. When I say that, I am talking about players, coaches and myself - everybody."
Offensive Coordinator James Franklin
On what other plays stood out besides the turnovers...:
"Obviously, the play that stands out to me was the four-minute offense, and we called the naked and took a sack. Huge play. We called the naked not as a pass ... We were having trouble running the ball all day long. We called the naked as a keeper, and if everybody came to him, Chris [Turner] could jump and dunk it over top. We've worked on that every single week in a four-minute offense. It obviously wasn't a good call."
On the play of Torrey Smith:
"He's doing some good things, obviously, and making plays for us. We have to get the ball in his hands more often. We just have to be more consistent with everything we're doing. This is as bad of a loss as, me personally, I've ever been involved with, possibly because I feel the blame."
On the play of Chris Turner:
"He was a little banged-up last week; I thought overall that as the game got going he played pretty well. He's taken some shots. We have to protect him better ... Early on he made some mistakes that he shouldn't have made in terms of checks, but besides that, I thought he played pretty well."
On if he thinks the team can bounce back from this loss:
"I think in general, I think you have to be as positive as you possibly can. What we have to do it learn from these mistakes. You can't turn the ball over as many times as we turned the ball over. I think we had two fumbles and one interception in the first half. That's going to kill you. You can't make a bad call in a four-minute offense. You can't have a penalty in a four-minute offense. You can't make a bad call; that was on me. You can't put a freshman kicker in a position to win the game. He's doing a heck of a job, but that's our job on offense to stay on the field."
Maryland Player Quotes
Quarterback Chris Turner On his feelings about this game...:
"I have a lot of feelings. I'm disappointed. It's a game we should have had. It's the same story as last week: turnovers, they had points off of turnovers, more mistakes, off sides, holding penalties, things like that. We can't do that. We're not a good enough team to make those mistakes and still win a game."
On his frustration with this loss knowing that the team is capable of more:
"Yeah it's very frustrating. It's something that we have to size up every week, going into these games. It's not killing ourselves, playing sound football with sound mechanics, and just executing the game plan to the best of our ability. We made too many mistakes today."
On his interception:
"I think it was a little low, and it just bounced off his hands. I couldn't really see it. I think in the first quarter I did not play very well. I missed some checks. I left some plays on the field, really. I kind of got my act together in the second quarter. We came out strong in the second half and I think we scored a touchdown, bought some coverage. I was up-and-down. I don't know I'll have to see some film."
Senior Defensive Lineman Deege Galt
On tough loss:
"It was a tough game and we knew we were going to have to bring our `A' game to beat these guys. We had too many mistakes and you can rarely win games when you have turnovers like we did today."
On the playing with a short field all game:
"It's tough, but you can't complain about the situation. It's a frustrating situation and there are going to be a lot of times this season when we get to play with a lot of field. We have to play as a team and when it comes down to the last drive it doesn't matter if it is a short or long field; we need to get it done."
Junior Linebacker Alex Wujciak:
On the roller coaster past few weeks that Maryland has had:
"We have to get our stuff together. We need to work harder at practices and we need to work on not turning the ball over. We need to go back and watch some film and make sure we come out more ready for Rutgers next week."
Sophomore Wide Receiver Torrey Smith:
On the play of Chris Turner:
"Every time Chris Turner goes out on the field he does a good job of managing the field. Nothing really rattles him and he lives for the big moment. He made some big-time throws today, but the mistakes and penalties beat us."
On the 64-yard touchdown catch:
"The defender was on my back when I caught the ball and I tried to get my hand on his chest and push him off. Once I got him off of me I looked back and I knew I was going to score."
On Maryland stretching the field:
"Anytime you can throw the ball down the field and get 30 or 40-yard gains it is going to excite the offense and give us confidence. It also gives Coach Franklin more flexibility as far as us being out there and trusting us to make plays, we have to continue to catch the ball and make plays.
Middle Tennessee State Head Coach Rick Stockstill
On the perception of MTSU changing as the Blue Raiders play larger schools: "We I hope [it changes]. When we play, we expect to win. Against Clemson we expected to win the game... We expected to win this one. I don't know how [others] perceive us, but we're not going to back down from anybody."
On winning the turnover battle:
"We always talk about the recipe for winning, which is protect the football and win the turnover battle. You have to play smart. Don't have a lot of penalties. Play the kicking game. Play with great effort and passion. We got three turnovers in the first half, and converted two of those into points. Usually you look at the box score and whatever team protects the football wins. Our defense did a great job and our offense did a great job capitalizing on turnovers."
On the defensive strategy against Maryland:
"We went in wanting to stop the run. That was our objective; we wanted to put pressure on it. Give [Da'Rel] Scott credit, he had some tough, hard-nosed, physical runs. We wanted to stop the run. Our main objective was to make them beat us throwing the ball, which [Maryland] came close to doing."
Middle Tennessee State junior quarterback Dwight Dasher
On what it means to earn a victory over Maryland:
"It means a lot. We're showing everyone that we're here to play and that we can beat bigger schools. It shows we're serious this year and we're trying to make it to a bowl game."
On what the Blue Raiders were saying before the game-winning drive:
"I was telling everyone they had to pick-up their blocks and everyone had to make plays. We needed to get down there and win the game, and that's what we did. I told the line to give me some time so I could make some plays and they did that for me. We just kept saying `Play hard. We can win this game.'"