Player press conference quotes: Sept. 22
Sept. 22, 2008
QB Colt McCoy
On he and Jordan Shipley playing at a high level together: It's fun. We throw the ball around so much. When we go back home or anytime, we always carry a football. We've always talked about throwing touchdowns all the time, so being able to do that is fun. Being able to have him out there, I know where he's going to be all the time. He does a great job of just getting open. When the ball's in his hands, he's going to make plays. It's a lot of fun.
On his flea flicker pass to Shipley: That's the hardest throw there is, that's the hardest catch there is. When there's nobody around, throwing versus the air. I would much rather throw the first touchdown that I did to him, that's a much easier throw to make even though it doesn't look like it. At the same time, when he's running that wide open you don't want to short arm it or throw it over his head.
On his touchdown run against Rice: I surprised myself. I just wanted to score, that's all that happened. I appreciate Jordan pushing the guy into me, that made it look a little bit better I think. I just ended up scoring somehow.
On the 99-yard touchdown drive: We didn't have that good of field position in the first half against Rice, but that makes a huge statement. That wears the defense down so much. Being able to come off the goal line, we made two or three third-down conversions in the drive, so being able to sustain a drive like that, keep a defense off the field, that helps our team. When you can drive 100 yards and get points that helps, too.
On the success he's had so far in his career: There have been so many great quarterbacks to come here. I'm playing behind probably the best ever in Vince (Young). To be able to have the success that we're having is a blessing. That goes back to my coaches, to my teammates, all the guys that I've played with before. I just want to win. I think that's the most important category for a quarterback is how many wins you have, and that's all I want to do.
On if he ever thought he would be the all-time leading touchdown passer at Texas: You dream about those things as a kid and now some of those things are coming true, and I have another year to play. My eyes are looking forward, they're focused on Arkansas. Like I said, the plan is to win.
On losing TE Blaine Irby: It's a tough loss for Blaine, Blaine's a great friend. We feel sorry for him but we've got to move forward, and he would say the same thing. We've got to find a way to win, and I think we'll be fine. We've just got to keep doing what we're doing, execute, we have full faith and confidence in the coaches to have a plan. We'll be ready.
OT Adam Ulatoski
On how the offensive line has been playing: You're always trying to get better. We still have to get better in the running game and we always need to improve on our pass game and protecting Colt [McCoy]. We always take pride in that. We have to continue to get better because we are going to have a bigger test this week. They have a really good defensive line. We have to be firm up front and just continue to get better and practice.
On Blaine Irby's injury: You always hate to see a guy go down, no matter what team he's on. Unfortunately, injuries happen in football, and we are just going to have to rally around him and keep his spirits up because we all know it's hard.
On if the team could tell he was hurt badly during the play: Blaine is a tough guy and if he is not getting up, there is obviously something really wrong. We didn't know the extent of the injury, but we knew something was definitely wrong.
On the passing game: We have great weapons in Colt, Quan [Cosby], Jordan [Shipley] and all of the other guys. So, we are going to do whatever we need to, to win the game, and if that means more pass protection than run blocking, then we'll do it.
On the Arkansas game: This is Texas-Arkansas and not just another team. All bets are out the window in a rivalry game like this. We're going to have to go out there and play our best game against them.
DT Roy Miller
On the schedule up ahead: It's definitely going to get harder, especially with the teams in the Big 12. There are four or five of us that are in the Top 25. They are great passing teams and it's only going to get tougher. We just have to work harder and focus on ourselves even more. We have to focus on eliminating our errors and things like that. We can work on things like getting to the quarterback faster or being in the right place at the right time. We just have to focus on ourselves.
On Arkansas: They look really good on film. Their quarterback looks really good and their offensive line is great. We'll have a chance to play against the Rimington [Trophy] winner from last year, so we're looking forward to that. They have a great looking team. Their running back is good and they have good receivers.
On if he likes playing in rivalry games: Yeah, of course. With a rivalry game, you know they are going to try their hardest to take us out and we are ready to do the same. We're all ready and you know it's time to go.
On if it is easier to prepare this week since they have already prepared for Arkansas earlier: I guess I feel really comfortable heading into the week because I already know a lot about them. I was to the point where I was ready to play them and we all were prepared. We're feeling very confident about our preparation for this game and we can only get to know them better. We can only watch more film and dissect their last game and see what we need to do and the things they have changed.
On what makes a good goal line stand: You have to have Coach Muschamp because he's been preaching resiliency to the defense and having pride in our defense and what we do. We have to have pride and not let other people do what they want to you. Coach Muschamp is a great coach. Just his personality and swagger rubs off on us and we want to do the same thing on the field to show that.
OG Cedric Dockery
On having to block more for passing plays: Whatever Coach Davis calls, it doesn't matter, and we just have to execute it. We have to bring positives to the game.
On preparing again on Arkansas: We're just glad we get another chance to play them. The game was postponed and it could have been canceled. It's going to be the Big 12 versus the SEC and it's going to be a great game.
On if they've had a chance to watch the Alabama-Arkansas game on film: I haven't seen much of the film, but the Alabama-Arkansas game was a lot closer than it looked even though there was such a lopsided score. Alabama got some big plays on them off turnovers and stuff like that. I know it's going to be a tough challenge and we're going to have to be really focused.
C Chris Hall
On if he admires what Arkansas's [Rimington Trophy winning] center has been able to do: Oh yeah, for sure. You've got to admire great offensive linemen like him. I don't know if this is the case, but he might have been my host when I went there for my recruiting visit. We're definitely happy for him and all of the success he has had, but we still hope that the game comes out in our favor.
On winning the Boss Hog award this week: Yeah, that was nice. Michael Huey and I split the award this week. That's always something good to get of course. Adam [Ulatoski] has gotten it the past two weeks and it was our turn to get our names on it.
On if it is a good thing that Arkansas runs the same defensive schemes as Rice: Yeah, of course that is good. Hopefully by now, we'll get in the rhythm of seeing that defense, so all I can see of it are good things.
On Jordan Shipley: He's a really great guy. Ever since I got here, he has always befriended me and been really nice to me. He and Colt and have taken me hunting. Of course, he is a great football player. We've had some good times talking about the Lord and what he has been enjoying. All I have to say are good things about him. I actually got to watch him when he was a senior in high school play at his state championship game. It was at Texas Stadium and I remember thinking that his team did not look like a 3A division team. They were running up-and-down the field and Jordan looked like the fastest person I've ever seen play high school football. I'm very glad to see him play so well. He had such a huge game on Saturday and it was great.
On if it is tough to see Blaine Irby get injured: Yes, absolutely. Nobody likes injuries, and we don't like to see our guys get hurt like that. But, you also have to be mentally prepared, because that is part of football. We'll just have to move on, first in a sense that we have to play a game this Saturday, but also in another sense that we need to really rally around Blaine and be there for him in preparations for him coming back.
DE Brian Orakpo
On if he likes playing against teams they don't see very often: Yeah, I do. You kind of want to see how you compare to the rest of the country. Obviously, you see Oklahoma and Missouri all the time with them being in our conference. But, with non-conference games, you want to see how you compare yourself to the other guys. It's a fun game we are going to be playing in.
On if this is "take two" in preparing for Arkansas: Yeah, it is. You can basically take what I said last time and just repeat it. But kidding aside, this is going to be a great test to us. These guys are coming off of a loss, but in reality, their turnovers are what killed them. It wasn't a blowout if you really watch the game. It was really a close game and it was turnovers that really hurt them. They have a big offensive line and they can really move and be very physical. We have to be ready to be prepared for that.
On seeing the Arkansas QB throw four interceptions this past weekend: After seeing that, it tells us that we have to put pressure on Casey [Dick]. He's been a great player for them and he's a senior leader for them. I feel like if we put pressure on them, we'll be able to create some turnovers and create some havoc. Hopefully, we'll be able to do that, and if not, it's going to be a long day.
On why the defense is so good at the goal line stand: Basically, our guys have heart, that's all I can really say. With these new spread offenses, to be honest with you, you're going to give up yards. Guys are going to be able to create something with the receivers running all around the place and with quarterbacks getting the ball out fast. It seems like when all of the receivers are all over the field, the quarterback has lanes to scramble for a first down. But once you get into that red area though, that's when things clamp down and that's when the field shortens up. You can really clamp down on what your defensive philosophies are. If they want to go for it on fourth down, we'll clamp down on things and do the best we can.
On Roddrick Muckelroy: He is a very solid player and he's a great leader for us as well. He's a junior, but he's a redshirt junior, so he's been here four years already. This guy gets better every week it seems. He's the "Tackling Machine," and that's one thing we tease him about. He takes all of our tackles. If I have three tackles, that's the best I can do because he and Sergio [Kindle] are cleaning it all up. He's a great asset that we have in our linebacking corps, and with him leading the way, we can only get better each and every week.
LB Sergio Kindle
On playing linebacker and rushing the passer: I just like defense no matter where you put me. You can put me in the middle, I'm going to like it regardless. But rushing the passer is nice, I'll tell you that. If I don't make a play, I know somebody else will.
On the scoring defense: That's the goal for every game. I don't want to give up even a field goal. Every team moves the ball as you can see and one mental error by one person can lead to a touchdown or a big play. So we have to make sure everybody is on the same page every play and try to hold them to zero points. That's unlikely, but we can at least hold them enough to get the win.
On Roddrick Muckelroy: I enjoy playing with everybody, but I knew as soon as I got here that Muck was a great player. He's got a work ethic that most people don't have. He and I being backups, I think that's how it started because we knew we had to do our thing when we got the chance. We tried to make the best of our opportunities and we're still doing that now.
On Lamarr Houston's first game back: I'm just happy to see us make plays. I'm glad Lamarr came back and played the way he did. He's a major factor on defense. He really played well.
LB Rashad Bobino
On the effect of Saturday's game on the situation at home: It meant a lot. You really have to appreciate stuff because it can be taken away from you at any time. I was really able to focus because my family wasn't down there. They stayed in Dallas with my aunt so I didn't think too much about it. I could concentrate on Rice and the game.
On Colt McCoy's maturation process: I could see it [when he got here] because people don't realize that Colt works really hard behind the scenes. He's steady getting it to wide receivers even when they're off. Any time that he has, he dedicates to his game, throwing routes, practicing snaps with Chris [Hall]. Some quarterbacks don't really work out that much, but Colt works out all the time. You can tell because he's put on some pounds. So I could actually see when he first came in that he was dedicated and he wanted to get things going because he never stops working.
He's a competitor. He loves to compete and he loves the game. I knew he was going to be a really good competitor because he still wanted to come here to Texas even though we were recruiting the top quarterback at the time. That told us that he had a lot of initiative and he wanted to persevere through anything. He did that with the quarterback battle, too, when he was a freshman. I believe he picked the right place and it was the right time for him.
On Arkansas RB Michael Smith: My impression is he's really fast. You can't give him too much space because he's one of those 10.3 [100-meter time] guys. He can break the long run really quick. So we have to smother him because he's averaging over 100 all-purpose yards, that lets you know he's a really good back catching and carrying the ball. We're going to have contain him because he can be a really big threat.
On Roddrick Muckelroy: It's really fun knowing that he's going to be there, that he's got your back any time. If I've got outside, he's going to come inside. It's a really nice package to have, with all the other linebackers as well.
On Roy Miller: He's really excited about this game. He gets to go against a really good center, so he's really pumped up. I think their center [Jonathan Luigs] won the Rimington Trophy, so this will be a really big game for (Roy).
On playing Arkansas two weeks later than scheduled: Because of the storm, we were down a little bit [last weekend]. I really wanted to play. But also getting back on Rice, getting everything back on schedule, I would say yes [we're anxious to play Arkansas]. It's been awhile. But the good thing is we started working on them last week, so it will be more refreshing than learning.
CB Ryan Palmer
On the Arkansas-Alabama game: I watched some of the highlights.The score did not indicate what some of the game was. They gave up a couple of big plays which made it look like it was a blow out, but other than that, Arkansas played Alabama real hard. In my opinion, Alabama is a good team. Arkansas had a good game other than the couple big plays they gave up.
On where he thinks this team is going: I think we are headed in the right direction. I thought we played a solid football game Saturday. We gave up a chunk of yards, but like I said, our goal is to hold a team under five yards per attempt, which we did. We just want to hold them under five yards and not let them score a touchdown. We gave up one this week. Our goal is to hold them under 10 points a game and we have been doing a pretty good job of that.
On Colt now versus the past: Colt, my boy, is doing his thing. He has a lot more confidence out there. He is playing with a little different swagger. He just feels his game is elevating. He knows it and we know it. We are standing behind him and let him do his thing.
On holding Rice at the goal line: It was fun. I've never been apart of something like that. We just wanted to hold our own. Nobody is selfish on this defense. Everybody is all one. We just go out there and play hard. We just want to go out there and play good team defense.
WR Jordan Shipley
On Colt McCoy breaking the record with his touchdown: It is definitely fun. Colt is one of my best friends and he is my roommate. It has been a lot fun to share this thing together. We have a long season ahead of us and hopefully we can continue to make some plays and win a lot of games.
On getting prepared for the Arkansas game: I am sure the coaches have gotten a good look at the last game and may have seen some things that were different, but overall we know their schemes. Basically, it will probably be the same stuff. Obviously, it helps to see somebody one more time than what we would have. I don't know that there will be anything major different.
On his injuries to his play now: The first two years were definitely tough for me, but I learned so much from those two years about patience and having to be mentally tough and how to fight back. Now every time I step on the field it is like a treat to me to be out there. I feel great now and I hope I continue to feel good and help this team out.
On Blaine Irby's injury: Blaine was a big part of our offense. It obviously is going to hurt us not to have him out there. All we can do is move forward and the coaches will figure out the best things to do. We will definitely miss Blaine and we hope he has a good recovery.
On his second touchdown and being wide open: The thing you got to do on a ball like that is just relax. It is easy to look around and see nobody there and get anxious about it. The best thing to do is just relax and watch the ball all the way into your hands. That is what I tried to do. I probably have never been that open in my life.
RB Chris Ogbonnaya
On Arkansas and their fans: Arkansas has great fans that are dedicated to their football program. We expect it to be a rowdy game. I remember when I was down here in 2003, my senior year in high school, I came and watched the game and their fans were in to it. They were very loud. It excited me that people are that adamant about their teams where they are, not just at UT.
On Colt passing Major Applewhite's record: It is incredible to be a part of. Colt is such a great talent and has done such great things since we've been here. He has been the quarterback for the main time that I've been here and he is my quarterback and I take a lot of pride in protecting him and catching passes from him. It is a great honor to be a part of that and 20 years down the line to have the opportunity to tell people that I was a part of this great thing.
On the first time he met Colt McCoy: It was kind of a shell shock for me. I am a city guy from Houston. Colt comes up to me and the first thing he says is, "Hi, I'm Colt McCoy." I am just like where are you from? (He had) a West Texas accent. He is such a nice guy and humble guy. He works so hard at what he does and it is evident. He is doing great things. We want to keep him up there and keep him healthy, so we can continue on and have a great season.
On Blaine Irby's injury: It was unfortunate. Blaine was doing great things for us. He is great athlete. He is very versatile. He played full back here also. He is a great friend of mine. It is very unfortunate because he does work so hard and he was looking forward to having such a great year. We are going to have to move on. We have great players. We have Peter Ullman and Greg Smith, guys who have played, Peter especially. We are just going to have to step up and make plays as always. It could happen to any of us. You have to move on and keep going.
On the offense's chemistry: Our team chemistry is good. The coaches are doing a good job of showing where we have made mistakes and we are trying to erase the mistakes and get better. During every game you have something you need to work on. That is what practice is for, so you can learn and prepare yourself to play well in the game. I think so far, we have done a good job of that. As a group as an offense we are very critical on our own performance. We strive to play perfect even though we know we can't. So, we are just going to build upon that and try to get better each week.
WR Quan Cosby
On Jordan Shipley: I have been through the process of his injuries. I've always known of what he was capable of and he is just really displaying it now. He takes all the measure to try to stay healthy. He is playmaker. He is huge on the other side. He is positive for our offense.
On Blaine Irby's injury: My prayers are out for him and his family and the situation, but we have to move on. Things like that can happen every week. Fortunately, we go to Texas where we have a lot of guys, we have depth, so we will move forward.
On when the last time he fumbled the ball: I actually did, my freshman year against A&M. Fortunately, it hasn't been too many, so they're easy to remember. As Coach said, that is the first and last for season. I will definitely try to correct that and put the ball in the right hand.