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Notre Dame Coach and Player Quotes




Nov. 10, 2013

Quoting Notre Dame Head Coach Brian Kelly

Opening Statement:

“Well all losses are disappointing losses, but that was especially disappointing in the way that we played and approached. Hats off to Pittsburgh. They deserved to win.”

On the ejection of defensive lineman Stephon Tuitt:

“Letter of the law. They were saying it was helmet-to-helmet contact, they were just reciting the strict interpretation of the rule.”

On failing to attempt to recover quarterback Tom Savage’s fumble:

“It was just a lapse, a bunch of inexperienced guys out there not seeing that they should have been on the ball.”

On quarterback Tommy Rees’ two interceptions tonight:

“Poor execution.”

On what stood out the most about his team’s performance:

“The execution on offense was awful. Defensively we kept drives alive—the pass interference penalty, personal foul. We weren’t alert enough to get on the ball on the fumble and we gave up an explosive play in the passing game. And we didn’t coach well enough. It’s on everybody. To single out one thing, it was, to a large degree, the execution was very poor.”

On wide receiver Ben Koyack’s recent play:

“He’s just been emerging and maturing. He’s a talented young man but it’s just been taking some time. He’s gotten his confidence and certainly has shown that he can be a big asset.”

On entering the coming bye week:

“We’ll go in Monday and put this behind us from a film standpoint. We won’t put this behind us from an evaluation standpoint, but we’ll put it behind us in terms of the game itself. We’ll weight train on Tuesday and then I’ll kind of make my decision as to how we move forward the rest of the week.”

On defensive lineman Louis Nix III:


 

 

“I thought he battled. He was nicked up, he was banged, he was a little sore, but he’s a competitive kid. He gave us everything he had. He played a lot of football. Certainly when we lost Stephon early, it was pretty clear we were a little under-manned inside.”

On his belief that performances like tonight’s game were a thing of the past:

“We’ve won a lot of games over the last couple of years. I’ve been preparing my football teams now for 23 years, so there won’t be any changes relative to how we prepare. It’s execution, right? It’s playing the game and coaching the game. We didn’t do a very good job. We, everybody, players and coaches, we did not do a very good job tonight.”

On getting the ball to different running backs throughout the game:

“It changes from week to week relative to how the game is going and what’s available to us. There were a couple of times where we felt like George (Atkinson III) gave us a better opportunity in there for the kind of runs we were trying to get. George is a guy that we like when the game is a perimeter game. It fits George’s skill set, so that’s why you saw him in the game a little bit more.”

On tonight’s loss taking BCS opportunities for Notre Dame off the table:

“I’m not really concerned about that. I think what I’m most concerned about is the inability to put together a consistent effort tonight in November. We’re 10 games into the season. There’s really, for me, no reason why, and I take full responsibility for this as the head coach, that there’s no reason why we don’t execute at the level that we should in November, and that didn’t happen tonight.”

On the lack of execution throughout the game:

“No. You saw what happened tonight. Two interceptions, a fumble, a big play pass, missed tackle, fundamentals of the game of football. No big-picture things, not really big, heavy stuff. These are just fundamentals of the game of football that were not attended to in the manner that they needed to be. Our mantra is, ‘You can’t start winning until you stop losing,’ and we did things tonight that cause losing.”

On the scramble of getting guys in on the defensive line:

“Well, it wasn’t hard. It wasn’t hard. We knew who they were, but those were concerns. Look, Stephon Tuitt not playing in the game, that’s not why we lost this football game. That is not why we lost this game. That had nothing to do with this loss tonight. That’s a question, and that whole rule, that’s a time and a place that can be handled. This really was about our football team going on the road and executing poorly on offense and not being good enough when they needed to be on defense. Coaches are responsible for getting their players to execute. That’s why we’re hired. That’s what we do, and we didn’t get that from our players tonight. I’m responsible for that, and that didn’t happen tonight.”

 

Quoting Notre Dame Quarterback Tommy Rees:

On mistakes made in the game:

“Yeah, the turnovers were an issue. You can’t turn the ball over and I take responsibility for that. You know, when you put your defense in compromising situations like that, it’s hard for your defense to make stops.”

On having a bye next week:

“I don’t know whether it’s worse to have it after a win or a loss. We have to regroup and come back together as team. We’ll have a good two weeks of preparation for our last two games of the season.”

 

Quoting Notre Dame Wide Receiver TJ Jones

On how the team approaches the rest of the season:

“We have to pick up the pieces and go back to square one. Yeah, it was frustrating. They executed and we didn’t but we have to go out and find a win.”

On the week’s preparation:

“We obviously didn’t prepare well enough, but during the week we didn’t feel like we were unprepared. They made plays when they had to; we didn’t. We made mistakes that we shouldn’t have and they didn’t.”