NOTABLES: Coach Partridge's Bye Week Presser 10/17/16
"After watching the film from the Marshall game, [there are] some things that we are proud of. We ran the ball and stopped the run as well as we have, I think maybe since we got here a couple of years ago. Iím very proud of how we handled that part of the game. That is really what put us in position where we had a chance to win the game, those two key things. We are continuing to get better. There are things we need to continue to work on, obviously. You look at the fourth and one play, I anticipate that question from you guys, again, at the time the way we were running the ball [we] really felt like we had a shot to get the play. We ran an outside play. We had been running inside so much and in that formation, we had run earlier in the game and they had shown they were pinching everybody inside, so that was the reason for the play call that we made. You look at two red zone turnovers, obviously hurt us there in the first half, and didnít come away with points there. Big pass play against our defense in the first half and then on their last drive were plays that hurt us. We had a chance to win and we didnít. It is encouraging. I got text from coaches all over the country, in the last 24 hours, that we have common opponents, so teams that are watching the Marshall game, teams that are watching other games that we played that just say how close they see we are and how much better we are getting. That is encouraging and Iím excited to hear that from my peers."
Four possessions away from being 5-2. How do you balance that with the reality of a 1-6 record?
"Again, like I have said at the beginning of the year. You are looking at it from a macro and when we are in season we are looking from a micro. We are on one mission at a time. This is a bye week and a chance to self-scout and do a little early game prep for Western Kentucky."
In the first quarter you were down 10-7 and you bring in Daniel [Parr] and he leads the team down field. I think he converted a couple of third downs, you are moving, you score and you are ahead 14-10. Why not bring him back and keep the so called hot quarterback playing?
Jason [Driskel] moved the ball as well. And, again right now at this point our offense, what we are able to call and execute at this time is limited with where we are with Daniel and his progression. That is the reason and one drive, yes, I understand what you are seeing. There are other things that we are seeing through the course of that drive as well that you canít get to things in your playbook, yet, because of where Daniel is. We moved the ball well with Jason also.
Kelly [Parfitt] to right guard was that just a function of maybe less lateral movement than at tackle?
"Two factors: that is part of it, because of what he is battling health wise and his ability to move because of the health battles that he is having and the development of Brian Beck. Those two things happening right in front of us allowed us to protect Kelly as much as we could. I couldnít be more proud of him. What a valiant effort to give everything he could. You guys watched the game. You saw he gave everything he had."
How did he come out of it?
"We will get more information from the doctors. Iím glad we are on a bye week."
The television announces kept mentioning that when you ran the ball straight ahead you picked up a lot of yards. When you ran outside it was much less. Is that true, you do better running straight up the middle?
"Is that a big picture question? Through the course of the year, you look at Kansas State, you know a lot of our productive plays were outside plays to Kerrith [Whyte]. It is any given play, any given day we have guys who can get it to the outside. We were having success, certainly, running inside zone and variations of that through the course of the night, on Saturday night."
Throughout this streak you have tried different things. What is the next thing?
"From a motivation standpoint, we are in a very good place. Our kids continue to come back and practice hard, play hard. We have stayed on one mission at a time. We havenít left that. We will continue to do that. We will try to find a way to win each day throughout the week. None of those things have changed. I know that when things arenít going your way people take shots, and that is ok. Finding a way to win each day and focus on winning one mission at a time we have never wavered from that, nor will we. That is what puts us in position to where we have a chance to win at the end of these games. To throw everything that you have worked [on] to the wind and say you know what we havenít won these close games, that is a sign of panic and we donít need to do that right now because we are in a good place recruiting continues to go well. We are in a good place in terms of how hard we are working. We are not in a good place in terms of overall record, I completely understand that. We are not where we wanted to be. We are just continuing to coach better and play better."
Last week you talked in terms of a break through. Is that winning a game?
"It is just playing a more complete game. Again, the plays that I referenced, getting those off the tape. We ran the ball better than we ever have, since I have been here. We stopped the run. That was the most complete run game, from start to finish that we have had, to my recollection, since we have been here. We stopped the run against Marshall, which they have had a lot of success with the previous two years, running the ball on us. Coach Roc [Bellantoni] put together a great plan. The guys up front played well. We hit our gaps the way we needed to for the most part. We need to build off that and eliminate some of the things that hurt us on Saturday night."
You played more two-tight end sets this weekend. What did you like out of that?
"Their style of defense, their schematics leant itself to where that was going to be a part of what we took a look at initially. Like most teams, we have things that we are going to evaluate the first half of the game and confirm, ok are they going to react to a certain formation or a certain personnel group. The way we think, and if they do we are going to stay on a package. It is very common in any style of offense. Georgia Tech in their triple option that is how they operate. You can see them work to a certain section of the playbook based on how you react as a defense. When we got to that section, we saw that we had a chance for success and we stuck with it."
With ďMotorĒ, going into the season did you see or anticipate that he would develop this quickly?
"I saw he had a chance. It certainly declared as we moved on. He is continuing to get better and better. He showed right away that he had great vision. We canít work with those guys, they are with the strength coaches for six weeks. You have about two and half weeks before you are in your first game prep and he was showing some really nice things and to see him do what he is doing on game day is fun for the rest of this year and the future moving forward. "