Quotes from last nights interviews after the game

Head Coach Mark Stoops

“They played unbelievably hard tonight -- and played winning football. And I really appreciate them and the way they put themselves in a position all week to win the football game. And there's quite a few plays in games and you never know which ones are going to decide the football game. And there's probably one of 12 plays in there that changed the game. And it's very disappointing that we didn't come up with those plays. The breakdown in communication defensively on the two plays are really a sore spot because they stick out and it takes away from the great passion and energy that the team, that our team played with. We played winning football. We have to get those things fixed and I accept responsibility for those and we'll get those plays fixed and do a better job. So, again, I thank the fans. The atmosphere was phenomenal. Greatly appreciate their support and energy, and I know our players did as well. I'll open it up for questions.”

#87, C.J. Conrad, TE

On penalty at the end of the game …

“It was tough. It wasn’t good. We obviously weren’t going to give up but we knew. That’s one thing that probably couldn’t have happened during that play, but it did and it was unfortunate. But I got Nick’s (Haynes) back and he put his heart out tonight and it wasn’t his fault at all. He played unbelievably well and no one looked at him any sort of way or like it was his fault at all because he played his heart out tonight and it was just an unfortunate call.”

On what was said in the locker room postgame …

“All of the leaders said something. Stephen (Johnson) stepped up and Courtney (Love) stepped up. Obviously we’re not going to hang our heads, but this hurts. It was emotional. We put a lot into this game and to fall short like this is not a good feeling.”

#68, Nick Haynes, G

On penalty at the end of the game …

“I was surprised. I didn’t think it was a hold but I guess he thought something else. That’s all I can say about that really.”

On who stepped up in locker room after game …

“It was really all of us. That was a hard one to lose. But we have a bunch of seniors and leaders here and we’ll be ready to go as quick as tomorrow. We’re a hungry team and we’ll be back better than ever.”

#41, Josh Allen, LB

On if the defense got tired late in the game …

“I don’t think so. It was communication issues, people not being in the right spot, people not signaling the calls and stuff. We are going to have to get better next week.”

On if the communication problems were because the defense was shorthanded due to injury …

“We need everyone in the game and when some guys are out its tough, but we have to keep playing. We have to keep talking. We are going to have to keep fighting.”

#15, Stephen Johnson, QB

On what positive the team can take from this …

“Our guys were fighting the whole 60 minutes. I am extremely proud of the team for what we did during the game. And getting that close while still being underdogs. I’m really proud of our team and how we held ourselves through that whole game.”

#99, Austin MacGinnis, PK

On the potential game-winning kick …

“Well, I was hoping I had enough, but it just came up short. But I’ve got to do better, make the first one. Maybe we’re not in that situation.”

#26, Benny Snell Jr., RB

On if they believed they were the better team …

“Right. We were the better team. There’s not a question. We did our thing on special teams, the defense and offense, so I felt like we were the better team. Whether it was just the mistake of the guy being open or the flag, we beat ourselves. That’s just that. We’re better than that team, period.”

#32, Eli Brown, LB

On how frustrating it was to leave guys open on two different plays …

“It’s communication. You get so riled up and you feel like you have the game in your hand and just something just slips up. Like I said, it’s communication. It was all closed in. We didn’t even see the other man move out. I guess they were breaking a huddle and moved somebody real quick where we didn’t see it, so they kept getting us with that. Every touchdown they had was a miss assignment. They didn’t earn one touchdown they had. One guy was wide open; the other guy was wide open. The long run, the guy jumped the gap and busted open something. They didn’t deserve anything. None of those touchdowns they had. It’s upsetting, but like I said, we got to go back and practice and fix our mistakes.”

#88, Charles Walker, WR

On how long it will take to get over something like this …

“With football you have to have a quick memory. Just like in a game, you drop a ball, they are going to come right back to you and you have to catch it. It’s different every time. We’ll see. Definitely a tough loss. We’ll use this as motivation. Watch the film, get better, get corrected, forget about it and play the next game.”


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