Nov. 9, 2002
Box Score |
Head Coach Ralph Friedgen
"That was a helluva football game. Give a lot of credit to NC State. I thought they were a tough, hard-nosed, well-coached team. I have a tremendous amount of respect for their program. I think our kids showed their character today. [They were] battling, we kept making mistakes...things we don't ever do. We had to do some things that were a little different for us. They expanded the offense a little and NC State did a good job of taking our normal stuff away, but we adapted. [In] the first half, I didn't think Philip Rivers was ever going to miss a pass. In the third quarter, I think they were taking it to us, and I called our defense over and I said, 'I don't think I have ever seen you play where it looks like you have given up,' and I said, 'I'm disappointed'. They came back, and the last half of the third quarter and the fourth quarter played how Maryland defense plays. We got some pressure on Rivers and then he started missing people. We were able to stop him and that was enough so we could get the ball again and get some things going."
"It's the mark of a good team that can win - especially against another good team - when you're not playing your best. That's a credit to the character of our team and our coaches. If you're going to have a good season, you're going to have to have one or two of those, because it's tough to get up every week. Hopefully, we'll learn from that and we have to get up for Clemson now."
On Steve Suter:
On the game's key point:
"I've seen him [make plays] in two-a-days and spring practice. We went to more three and four wide receiver sets today, we ran a reverse with him, we ran a shovel pass with him. He's a playmaker. [We are] smart enough to know to get the ball in the hands of the guys that can make plays. You see what they're doing on punts now, they're kicking the ball away from him. He's a good football player and he's getting better and the best news is he's here [for] two more years."
"I thought a key point of the game was Domonique Foxworth's
interception and...when he knocked a pass down that they had him beat on and he made a great recovery. I thought those were two big plays of the game."
On Domonique Foxworth:
"Domomnique has had an excellent season. I would like for him to tackle a little better, [which] I thought he did today. He's turned into a really good cover corner. He's going to give you his best every time out. He's picking up where Tony [Okanlawon] left off. He's getting a little swagger and believing in himself."
On the come-from-behind victory:
"Momentum is a tremendous thing in a game. It's really hard to break. You really have to hang in there tough and believe in each other. Somebody has to come up to make a play to turn things around. I thought Domomnique's play to pick the ball off...and the play to Steve with the high corner route got the momentum going and the got the crowd into it.[The comeback] speaks volumes for our players. It's a sign of winning. When you're losing, you pack it in. When you're winning, you don't ever think you're going to lose. You always believe something good is going to happen and you're going to pull it out. That's what makes winners and that's what makes losers."
On the importance of this victory:
"I think we're in [the ACC championship race] now. Every game is going to be huge for us. I told the kids last night that it's like being in the playoffs. If you win, you keep playing for something really good. If you lose, you're going to have a good season, but you're not going to have a great season. I said, 'What do you want to be? Good or great.'"
On his game winning field goal kick:
"It's every kicker's dream to have a kick like that in a season or even a career. I was fortunate enough to have one two years in a row. It is a great feeling."
On Maryland's 4-1 ACC record:
"November is all ACC games. Whenever you have an ACC opponent, it's always your biggest game. NC State just happened to be the next team on our schedule and that made it a big game. We just need to keep the ball rolling. Every week we have to step it up a little bit, raise the bar, and play week after week like it's our biggest game."
On beating 13th ranked NC State:
"We are trying our best to start beating higher ranked teams. We haven't done that as much as we would have liked to, but this was a step in the right direction."
On the defense struggling early:
"We are a very close group, like a bunch of brothers and when things aren't going right, we don't yell at each other. We just say, 'Make the play next time,' and we were relaxed the whole time. The first half we got a little down on ourselves, but the coaches picked us up and E.J. [Henderson] and Curome [Cox] and the older guys on the team were emotional leaders."
On his game-ending interception:
"When the opportunity happens, you need to open up the door and accept the challenge. It is good that we have a lot of guys on our team who can step up. That is what will help us out in our defensive backfield. That is what Coach Blackney wants us to do."
On his deflections:
"Coach said to push the pocket and to make [NC State quarterback Philip Rivers] run outside of the pocket. So I did, and when the ball came my way, I put my hand up."
On Maryland's closest game of the season:
"Everybody can blow somebody out when they are playing well, but the test is if you can play under pressure. That's what we came here and did today."