Nebraska 23, No. 20 Michigan 9
Football Postgame Quotes
Saturday, Oct. 27, 2012
Memorial Stadium (Lincoln, Neb.)
Head Coach Bo Pelini
"It's a good win for our football team and our kids. I'm proud of them. I thought they played hard, they did a lot of good things. We'll enjoy it tonight, and we've got a lot of football left to play this year. I thought we made some progress, thought we did a lot of good things, but there's a lot we need to correct from that game. We're going to have our work cut out for us next week. We'll enjoy it tonight, get back to work tomorrow and stay the course."
On how NU's defense changed after Michigan quarterback Denard Robinson left the game
"Not a lot; maybe pressured a little bit more. Got a little bit more aggressive, especially on third down. Got a little bit more of a feel for what they were doing and how they were doing it. I thought we had a good mix in the second half of playing base, playing some pressure, keeping them off balance. I thought it was good. I thought our kids executed well. We were preparing for Denard, and I called some things in the second half that we didn't call a lot during the week, so I thought our kids executed well."
On the play of linebackers David Santos and Sean Fisher
"I thought they played well, I thought Fish played really well. I thought (Alonzo) Whaley made some big plays--all those guys, they did some good things. (Justin) Blatchford came in and did some good things on third down. I thought it was a good team effort, I thought we played well front-to-back. That's a good offense, it stresses you in a lot of different ways. Even when Denard was in there, I thought we played well. I thought we did a good job of containing him, keeping him bottled up. It was a team effort. I'm proud of our guys. I wish Denard well. I got a chance to meet him at (Big Ten) Media Day. I hope he's OK. He's not only a heck of a football player, that kid's a class individual. I hope he's OK going forward."
On Nebraska's three defensive interceptions
"Our guys went up and made some plays on the ball. For a while there, I was thinking we didn't have anyone on the defense who could catch after last week with the five drops. I thought our guys had some opportunities and made a couple plays and it was big for us. I thought P.J. (Smith) was at the right place at the right time, made a good play. Stanley's (Jean-Baptiste) and Damion's (Stafford) were big plays also. It was good. I think we won the turnover battle, but penalties was another story. We've got to clean that up. That was an area of concern."
On the specific defensive areas he's seen progress in
"Our execution. It's nothing magical, it's about doing your job and executing what we're trying to get done. When we do it, we're pretty good. I thought we competed well on the outside, I thought our guys up front played well. I thought our defensive line did a really good job. At the end of the day, we didn't do anything fancy. We executed. We were in the right spots. We played good team defense. That's what it takes. And we got off the field on third down, obviously."
On the importance of special teams play in this game
"Big. Every point was big in this game. They missed one I think that hurt them, and I thought was a big part of the game. We went in wanting to win the special teams area and I thought we did a really good job. We pinned them down there a couple times and I thought the field position worked in our favor."
On the offense's play
"Inconsistent. I thought we left some points out there, we left some drives out there. At times, we looked really good. At times, we had some missed opportunities. I think we can play better. I don't think it was our best effort, but I think we did a lot of good things. They've got a pretty good defense."
On quarterback Taylor Martinez's management of the game
"I thought he did a great job. I thought we used it well. We used a number of different tempos; we looked to the sidelines. We used some fast tempo. We changed it up a decent amount, kept them off-balance and made them line up quick. I thought we really used our tempos to our advantage, and that's on Taylor to manage that all. We changed that a lot through the series and in series play-to-play. I thought it helped us, and you can't do that if the quarterback's not able to handle it and manage it the right way."
On whether he will hand out Blackshirts this week
"You know, I tried to give them to them last week and they didn't want them. They said they didn't think they'd earned them yet, so that's how I feel about it. It shows the character of our kids and the type of standards that they have. They didn't want them last week. They said they hadn't earned them and we'll revisit it after the Michigan game. I think they earned them."