Cougar Football Quotes: October 31, 2000 Press Luncheon

Head Coach Dana Dimel

"Last week I was really pleased with how our ball club played. Obviously I wasn't pleased with the outcome of the ball game, but I was pleased as far as I think we faced a quality opponent-an opponent that has dominated the conference since the initiation of the conference-and we played them toe-to-toe. Obviously, you look at it and we played great defensively, which is an understatement. I thought the defense played well."

"Offensively, we played better than what the score may have indicated. Our offensive execution was not that poor, and a lot of credit needs to go to Southern Miss and how they played defensively. Our football team was really close offensively. We just didn't quite get it done."

"I think ball games against quality opponents-I've seen it in the past how our football teams have responded-in which we've played tough that we then come back the next week and have an offensive outburst. The quality of opponent always helps to get better as the season goes on. That's what I see happening with this Southern Miss experience that we went through last Saturday. I feel like if we keep executing and improving like we have all season offensively, I think we even made a step towards that Saturday."

"I guess the bottom line is I wasn't disappointed in our offensive effort by any means, we just didn't find a way to get a score at the end of the game. And that's what you have to do to win football games. By no means are we going to accept losing ball games, but on the other hand, our football team did a lot of quality things. It was a quality football game and it was a tough break that we had to be the team that lost that football game. But we will find a way to win during this stretch run here. We've got three ball games coming up that are very crucial to this season, three ball games in which we control our destiny. Like I've told our ball players, and they understand it, that we can play quality football now for four quarters, and they also understand that our backs are against the wall and we have to find ways to win football games. There are no second chances now for this ball club. A three-game winning stretch is by no means out of the realm of reality and we just have to find a way to get it done."

"In looking at Tulane, they are a great offensive football team. Defensively, they've been struggling a little bit. I was asked last week whether I thought it was going to be an offensive game or a defensive game, and I wasn't quite sure. This week I'm pretty sure it's going to be an offensive football game. There should be a lot of points scored in this game, and our defense will speak to the contrary and hopefully they'll go in to contain Tulane and that's what their goal is going to be. Offensively, we're going to have to be very efficient and productive with what we do with our offense, and that will be critical to our success. It's not a game where we will be able to rely on the defense to win the football game for us. We're going to expect them to win it for us, but the offense has to step up and do their part and make their contributions and mvpoe the ball effectively."


On Houston playing such good defense against Southern Miss
"We knew by watching film that we had the personnel, that we could shut them down if we didn't make any big mistakes, and we had that same thought going into a lot to games this year, but we had a few mistakes in the first few games we had."

"I think that since we've gotten into the season, nobody is a rookie any more. Everybody knows the defense and knows what it takes to win games. The whole defense did a great job at coming out in this last game and executing the defensive scheme well."

On new defensive scheme and having to make the big plays
"When you pull a defensive lineman out and then you pull another linebacker out, you're vulnerable to the run. That kind of puts that extra weight on your shoulders that if they run the ball, you have to be able to make a play. If not, then they are going to be able to gain some yardage. But most of the time that we put that defense in, it's against third-and-long or second-and-long when we think that they are going to throw the ball. Sometimes they do burn us, but when you run a defense like that, you take that chance."

On his tackles-for loss record this season
"I think the biggest thing is being able to study film. I take film home every week and study it at home as well as here in the facility, study formations and what they like to do in certain situations. When you are on the field and you can recognize that, that gives you an advantage in knowing what is coming after you. When you can do that, it gives you the chance to get tackles for losses or sacks."


On last week's loss to Southern Miss
"We just didn't get it done in the end. It is frustrating, but we're recovering and are going to come back and play these last three as best we can."

On being able to block and run in the offensive line
"I'm here to do whatever they ask me to do. As far as run-blocking, I think you give everything a median and it makes things a little bit easier as far as play action, as far as being able to successfully pass the ball. You have to have a good balance."



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