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Huskers Survive Homecoming Scare in 41-31 Victory

By NU Athletic Communications

Nebraska Head Coach Frank Solich
“It was certainly a victory well earned by our players. I thought they really did a great job of hanging in there. There’s no question they were tested throughout the game, and I thought they responded throughout the game to the test. I certainly give a lot of credit to Texas Tech for coming in here and playing as well as they played. They did a great job. They threw the ball really well, made plays and put some points on the board.”

“A lot of guys stepped to the plate. The tight ends certainly did a great job without Tracey (Wistrom) in there. All in all, it was a victory that was earned. I feel pretty good for our players in terms of how they responded.”

“We just went about making adjustments and making sure we were organized for the second half in terms of what we wanted to do offensively, defensively and on special teams. We wanted them to understand that they should not be down. Even though we had a number of guys who got banged up and were lost in the first half, there were other guys who came in and stepped up to the plate. We moved the ball, we played good defense at times, and we did some things on special teams at times, that was very good. All we needed to do was come out in the second half and just make sure that we had confidence in ourselves and in one another to get this things done.”

“We were able to get some things done with the run, but it was obvious that they would have a difficult time playing play-action passes with the way they were committing to the run, and where they were lining their defensive secondary. So we decided to go ahead and try and loosen them up, and to a degree, that did happen and that enabled us to continue to be able to run the ball.”

Defensive Tackle Jeremy Slechta
About the challenge of tonight’s game

“They really threw the ball well on us, and that stuff is going to have to change. We can’t keep getting by and sliding by. We’re going to have to come out and work on that this week in practice.”

Difference in this year’s game from last season’s game
“I think they kind of knew what was coming after last year. It kind of seems like at times, they knew what we were running up front. They knew what was coming, they’d call it out, they knew what we were running before the play even started. They studied film well and it showed too.”

Quarterback Eric Crouch
On the offense
“I think overall we did a good job. We stepped up to the plate when we needed to, we had a few injuries, and maybe that kept us from calling a few plays, but I think overall we had the power game when we needed it, we completed passes when we needed to. Overall we did a good job and had over 500 yards.”

On the win overall
“I think we overcame some adversity. We were down in the beginning of the game and had to fight back and get the lead and we did that. We came out and played strong in the second half, and came down the field with the long drive and pretty much set the tone for the second half. Overall, the offense did a great job. We got better this week then we did last week.”

I-back Dahrran Diedrick
On the challenge
“The game wasn’t more of a challenge than we thought. We knew they were going to come in and try to give us their best shot. Just the fact that they’re coming off such a big win last week, they’re still pretty pumped up from that. Just having them in there after the 1st quarter makes teams think they have a chance. Maybe that made them play a lot better than they would have.”

On the game
“We had a lot of guys fall down today. It was shocking. Every time you looked up, somebody was coming out with an injury, and that’s something we’ve been able to stay away from so far this year. Today a lot of guys went down. They guys that stepped in for them and did a great job today.”

On the offense
“The offensive line impressed me. When we get down, we have this thing about us that we have to go out and do better. Everybody gets it in themselves, and we just go out and work harder.”

Texas Tech Coach Mike Leach
Our intensity was really good. I think we have to execute a little bit better. I felt like we sort of squandered the first quarter. We could have gotten more out of the first quarter in particular.

I told them to keep doing what they were doing. What we were doing was pretty effective at halftime. Our effort was great, but we just needed to keep coming and keep playing with high emotion and keep executing plays. I think we did. They are certainly a good football team. There are things we could do better from an execution standpoint. I think we could have played a better game, I think we played a pretty good game against a really good team.

I think the pass protection was really good. Late in a game we got in a position where we had to throw it a little more and throw it down field a little more than you would like to in succession. We had to do it play after play, which always puts pressure on your offensive linemen and makes their job tough. But I thought the pass protection was really good.

I think we have come quite a ways. We have had good effort and intensity. We need to increase that a little bit. I think our execution is going to catch up with practice. I think we are playing with more confidence than we have in a long time.

The toughest ones are when you don’t play well, no matter what happens. To me its pretty tough even if you win and don’t play well. I thought we played well. We are not going to go back and feel like there are a lot of things that we should have done different and improve on, but we are definitely going to find some things.

I really thought we played with good intensity all night long. That’s encouraging. That’s probably something that teams take for granted, but all good teams have the ability to do it week in and week out. We have done it two weeks running and we need to do it all the rest of the season.

Texas Tech Player Quotes
Running Back Ricky Williams
On Tonight’s Lost against Nebraska
“We came in here tonight expecting to win. I wouldn’t say that it’s a moral victory; we just didn’t get it done tonight. We played hard; we didn’t give up when we could have. We kept fighting, which I think is the most important thing. The hope is that we can carry this into next week against Baylor. Nebraska is a great football team, but the way we played tonight, I know for a fact that we could have beaten them.”

On Nebraska’s defensive adjustment in the second half
“They just played hard, they really didn’t make any adjustment from the first half. They played really smart football.”

On Wes Welker’s 85-yard punt return for a touchdown
“It really helped out a lot, momentum wise. Every time you have big plays, especially ones like that in this type of game, can’t do anything but help. It helped us out with our momentum and sprit as well.”

Linebacker Jonathan Hawkins
On Nebraska’s passing game
“We really didn’t expect them to come out and pass like they did. The caught us off guard in the first quarter. They had a good mix of play calling in the game between running plays and passing plays.”

On stopping Nebraska’s offense
“We were all assigned to somebody each play. We were just trying to slow-play Crouch and get everybody to the ball as quick as possible.”

On Eric Crouch
“He is probably one of the best athletes playing quarterback I have ever seen. He’s quick and strong and one of the best option quarterbacks I have ever played against. His passing game has really improved from last season. Tonight they came out throwing and caught us off guard.”


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