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“It’s real tough. We have great players on this team. We have great senior leadership, and for us to go out on this note…I know it hurts myself and I know it hurts them. We just have to get back to the drawing board, come back and compete next year.
How much will you remember the dropped pass in the end zone?
“Probably not too long; I’m good with stuff like that. If it was meant for me to catch it, I would have caught it. Maybe my grandmother wanted to teach me a little lesson and make me work a little harder next time. I don’t know, but it won’t stay with me long; maybe on the ride back, maybe on Sunday. But after that, it will be gone.”
Do you have a feel for how good this Virginia Tech team is?
“When you give a team opportunity after opportunity…it’s only a matter of time before they start making plays. We had the opportunity to go out there and make some plays and we didn’t do it.”
“We didn’t stop them. We just didn’t stop them. We got out-physicalled. We weren’t fitting plays right. I just don’t know what to say. Normally I try to find a positive, but it was just a big letdown in the second half.”
We’re the guys getting worn down?
“I don’t think so. You’ve got to give that running back a lot of credit. He was falling forward for way too many yards. We weren’t really pushing the pile back the way we should have. You’ve got to give credit to Va. Tech. Their offensive line played hard. We just didn’t get it done.”
What happened in the third quarter that allowed them to get their running game going they way they did?
“I was surprised, because on their first drive they started running their inside zones pretty well. On the outside runs – we’re pretty good with that and we kind of stopped them a little bit. They kind of got back to that in the third quarter. We didn’t do what we had to do. We didn’t stop them.”
How bad was it?
“There was someone back there on almost every play. I’ll wait to see the film, but it seemed like they were coming from all over the place. Darryl Tapp is a great player. Their defensive line played great today. It was nothing special…their defensive front was just having a great day.”
Would scoring the touchdown have given you more momentum going into the second half?
“I’m sure would have given us a little more. It always helps to go into the locker room leading, especially after a big turnover like that. That’s a victory for that defense and the whole team, when you can throw an interception like that and get away with only three. That kind of turned momentum on both sides a little bit.”
How tough is it to come so close to get a bowl and not get it?
“It’s tough. We knew it was going to be a tough road after we let the Maryland game slip away. It wasn’t the position we wanted to be in. We had a tough schedule.”
“We played great in the first half, but in the second half we didn’t play as great as in the first half.”
On allowing a short field to the opponent:
“It’s sometimes frustrating, but you just have to go out there and play. That’s been our motto all year: Wherever the ball is, that where we have to go play. This time we played, but they just made more plays.”