Sept. 2, 2006
Ohio Head Coach Frank Solich
On the special teams and defense:
"Those are the two things that got it done for us. I think we had great field position for a good share of the first half and well into the third quarter. I think a large share of that is because of the special teams play. Certainly Matt Lasher did a great job kicking and punting, and then we had a great coverage. We got a couple punt returns that got some yards. The special teams were a big factor for us in this game. Defensively, I thought we controlled the game. I think we won the special teams part of the game and I think we won the defensive part of the game. When you win two of the three you're going to have a great shot at winning. I'm pleased with the way those two units played."
On the offense tonight:
"(We were) somewhat ineffective at first. You know, it seemed to be out of sync. Our timing on some things was off. I don't know that we just controlled the line of scrimmage the way we had hoped to. I think we didn't hit some of the creases that were there in some of the running game. We started off with a slant route and had that dropped, and then didn't come back to the short passing game for a while. That was fairly effective for us as the game went on. We've got work to do from the offensive side of it, but I think that we didn't start off very well in any of the positions, in terms of dominating the game from the offensive stand point. That was a little disappointing, but that fact that they picked it up and I think played better in the second half, and we were able to put a few drives together and able to get some things done offensively. Obviously we have to get better in the running game. We've got to create more explosive plays. And we got to make sure we are utilizing all our big play potential in terms of the athletes on the field. Scott (Mayle) was able to get a few receptions and show something. We've got a lot of good receivers, and we've got to let them get their hands on the ball."
On Brad Bower's play:
I think he overcame a tough start with the bootleg and the interception, but to his credit, when he came back in, I thought he played well. I don't know what the stats are, but from just observing on the sideline, I thought that he did a good job. I was pleased with the way both of them (Bower and Austen Everson) played in the later part of the game in terms of making better decisions and making some decisions that enabled us to get some things done."
On the mood in the locker room:
"Even though you want to have it work where you run up and down the field offensively, and you stop every drive they have defensively and you control special teams, you've got to give the other side some credit. Their strong point was their offensive and defensive lines. They had a number of people returning up front. They're physical up front. So when you face a team that is physical in that area, you're just not going to run up and down the field on them and you're not going to stop them completely. I felt that as the game went on we got better. There's certainly a lot of work to get done. We need to get better in a lot of areas. We were able to identify that today, and that's what we talked about in the locker room afterwards. I don't think you ever want to be too down on a win because wins don't come easy. You want to build on that and make sure your players understand that we made this thing more difficult than it should have been, but yet we do know what we need to get better, and we'll start getting better at it on Monday."
Junior Running Back Kalvin McRae
On the team's play:
"We could have executed better especially on the offensive side. No team coming into the first game is going to be perfect. There's going to be mistakes, but that's why we have film -- to get rid of our mistakes and everything will be a lot better next time."
On winning the first game:
"Anytime you get a win it's good. We get a lot of momentum going into the Northern Illinois game. Getting this first win shows that all the hard work in the off-season is paying off."
On acknowledging the band after the game:
"Anybody that comes out to support the Bobcats you gave to show them love. Anybody that supports us is greatly appreciated. They work hard. They make a lot of noise out there for us. We have to them love when they support us."
Senior Defensive Lineman Shane Yates
On the defensive line's play:
"That's what we've been emphasizing this whole camp. I was really proud and impressed with our guys up front. Jameson (Hartke) did an excellent job rushing the passer, and we didn't really have to blitz that much because of it. Landon did a great job of moving out from a three-technique to play end. There was a lot of good push up from the middle, so I think we did a good job."
On whether or not the defense felt any added pressure with the offense's struggles:
"Not really. Were all going out there to play defense, and no matter what happens on the other side of the ball, it doesn't really affect us that much especially from the line position."
On comparing this team to the previous teams he's been on:
"We have a lot of potential. I don't think we came close to maximizing our potential. We had a lot of mistakes, a lot of thing we can do better, but feeling-wise this is as good as I've felt about any team I've been on at Ohio University. There is a lot of potential and a lot of playmakers. Maybe they didn't come out and play as well as they could've, but it is definitely there.
Senior Linebacker Matt Muncy
On starting 1-0:
"Yeah, the main goal is always to get a win, and it's great to start the season off with a win. We're not happy with the way we played. We can get better and watch the film and correct the mistakes. The first game is never pretty, but I think we took a step in the right direction, and we'll be better next week.
On the defensive rotation:
"We played tons of guys on defense. We kept running new guys in on defense, and the backup line backers played really well also. I think that depth is going to help. We have a 12-game season, hopefully more, so we have to keep guys fresh. I think its going to help us in the long run."
Senior Kicker/Punter Matt Lasher
On how well he punted the ball:
"I got a few good bounces there, but I have had a good couple of weeks of practice, so I knew if I went out there and punted well it would be the way it ended up. I got the first punt good and just went off of that."
On which kick he was the most nervous about:
"The first place kick because that is not as strong as my punting I don't think, and plus being a PAT made it a little more nerve racking."
On whether he solidified his place on the special teams:
"I think it is a week by week thing. For this week, I think were satisfied with it, but for Northern Illinois, I'll have to play well there too. As long as I keep playing well and staying consistent I'll be ok."
Tennessee-Martin Head Coach Jason Simpson
On Dexter as starting QB:
"He did some good things. He's very athletic. For the first game I thought he was very poised. There are some things we have to clean up with him, but he gives you an excellent dimension with his athletic ability. We'll keep working with him, and we'll be better Thursday."
On the defense stepping up and playing well tonight:
"It's no secret we are very proud of our defense, I thought they played very hard and very physical. We didn't help them out offensively or specialty wise. We kept them on the field, kept them backed up. All in all, I am very pleased with their effort."
On Don Chapman's carries:
"Honestly, he's our most productive player on offense, and we want to keep feeding him the ball. I just feel very unfortunate for him that there weren't enough holes there, which is something we have to work on because he's a physical back. We've got to get him out in the open."
The number one thing to reflect from tonight to reflect on next week:
"The penalties are to be expected, but they're very silly. One of them actually, as coaches we have to take the blame for them, but we have to get that corrected. The bottom line is we have to be able to run the ball come Thursday, and if we don't get that figured out now...you know. Cole Duncan the tight-end got hurt and we have fullback issues we have to get ironed out. I don't care if I have to bring another person over from defense to play full-back. We will have a tight end as a fullback.