Oct. 8, 2005
Trent Edwards is a pretty good football player. We knew it going in. It concerned me all week they had eight seniors and three juniors on that offense. That young man played a hell of a ball game. He threw the ball well, scrambled well, ran the quarterback draw on us. We had a guy assigned to him and he still made us miss. He made big plays.
The kids battled back. I thought we had a chance to get back in it at the end. We are just short a few guys, but that is football. You are going to have injuries and the next guy in line has to be able to step up.
(Jason Hill) He is a pretty good deep threat. We finally got one in at the end with Prator. We tried to run him and he couldn't go. Neither could Jordan.
Losing Derting hurts. He is a captain, the leader in the huddle. We were playing a true freshman, he made some plays, but obviously doesn't take a generous to see a freshman at tackle and a freshman at linebacker, right there in the middle. They ran the ball in there pretty well.
I said before the game that is their third coach for those guys and I was hoping they wouldn't get it put together until next week, but I think they figured it out.
(Stanford controlling the flow) I don't know what the third down conversion rating was, but it had to be pretty much in their favor. When they make those third down conversions, that is a long day for you.
We just gotta regroup. We have a great challenge next week. We have a ranked team coming in here, g Get fired up and go play somebody you are not suppose to beat. (Is that what this team needs) I sure hope so, we'll find out for sure.
(Alex Brink) I need to look at the video, but we had a lot of balls dropped. Some tight ends dropped them, I say Trandon drop one. We needed to come out in that second half and get a couple of first downs and we didn't do it, we went three and out again. We put too much pressure on the old defense. We had a couple of dropped balls there.
The kids are doing what we asked them to do.
(end of game talk) I just told them keep their heads up, stay as a team, compliment your opponent, they played well, and we have a great challenge next week. We win next week and they'll forget about this one.
(Any injuries) I don't think so. I will tell you tomorrow. Sometimes they don't feel it until the next day. They feel it a little bit more when you lose, I'll promise you that.
(Harrison) He played well.
Robb Akey (WSU Defensive Coordinator)
Their quarterback played a hell of a game. They did enough to stay alive in some situations and we didn't make plays we had an opportunity make.
(Edwards' scrambling) He has done that his whole career here, since he's been down there. That has been his MO. We thought we had a plan to be able to help us in the scenario. I thought we had a couple of opportunities to make plays on him that we obviously didn't. He was able to keep a couple of drives going.
(Missing Derting) You are always going to miss a senior football player of that caliber. There is something there as a leader that you miss, as well as a playmaker. That's not an excuse. This is football and you have to deal with those at times, but you certainly feel that impact. The game, we have to go on and we have to play. I thought we would have been able to stop things better than we did.
(Did Stanford change anything to sustain the long drives.) The things that were different, they changed the protection a little bit and looked to spring that quarterback out a little bit more, rather than set him up and have him have to take off on a scramble in that fashion. That was the only real thing that was different and we had some opportunities to sack him that we didn't sack him that he got out and scrambled on some plays and that is the disappointing thing, when you have the opportunity to make that play and the guy was able to get out of there. That was disappointing to me. But they executed the things they have been doing. There was some fine tuned things in there that were a little bit different, but it wasn't the majority of the ball game.
WSU Player Quotes
Running back Jerome Harrison
(On his running success this season) "(The entire offensive line) That's why we are successful, because of those guys."
(On team's running success) "Our offensive line is getting better every weekend. By going against (Adam) Braidwood and Mkristo Bruce and A'i (Ahmu) and our defensive line... Each week they are coming off the ball harder and harder and that's allowed us to run the ball more."
(On needing to win three of next six to reach a bowl, with five games against ranked teams) "Athletes play their best against the best. We are going to see what type of athletes we have and what type of character we have on this team."
Quarterback Alex Brink
(On offensive rhythm) "The first half we got five offensive series, so it's tough to get into a rhythm in the first half. I felt like there were some good things we were doing in the second half but it didn't work out for us."
(On absence of Jason Hill) "Jason Hill is a playmaker, a guy you can look to when you are in a bind and you have confidence he is going to make a play. Now we have a lot of guys out there who made plays obviously, Greg Prator came in and made a huge touchdown catch and Trandon Harvey played well. It's not like we lost because we didn't have Jason Hill. It hurt but it wasn't an insurmountable obstacle."
(On game's tempo) "You always want to have good tempo. It seemed when we would have a good series, get in the huddle and move the ball well. They took a lot of time off the clock, ran the clock down to one or two seconds every play. They certainly held the ball longer."
(On team's confidence) "It certainly disappointing, anytime you lose it's disappointing. It's a lot like last week. All of us feel like it's a winnable game. As far as confidence I don't think it's going to affect the confidence, drop the confidence of this team. We know we have six games left and our goal is still a bowl game. We are going to come out against UCLA, at home in front of our fans. We are going to be up for it."
Defensive end Mkristo Bruce
"We didn't stop the run, we didn't stop anything. It was a game I thought we had and it didn't turn out that way."
(On containing Trent Edwards) "I got off to a good start, found a way to beat the tackle going against. I gambled a couple of times and went inside...Whenever he sees an opening he is going for it, which is a tough thing to play against because if you don't have containment it is going to be a first down. He got a lot of key first downs and it really hurt us."
Head Coach Walt Harris
(on the feeling of winning at Pullman) "Any win is a great win for our team. This has been a hard time. It's been hard to have expectations and desires and not get it done. Today was a tremendous victory for our team and our football program. There is nothing like winning. This is such a hard game. It is so gratifying to be in that locker room. To be in that locker room is unbelievable.
(on the game) "It was a rope-a-dope game. We were back-and-forth. I felt we had a good plan and our players executed it. Trent (Edwards), I thought, was tremendous."
(on Cougars' final drive) "I've never been in a game where in a two-minute drill with less than a minute left they run it twice. He (Jerome Harrison) makes so many yards and gets it out of bounds. That guy is tremendous. It was a great credit to our defense stepping up at the end and putting the pressure on the passer."
(on the defense) I thought our defense played well. They were under a lot of pressure. That back (Jerome Harrison) is a great football player. He is fast; he runs hard. I thought their wide receivers blocked tremendously well. They got big guys too. That guy (Greg Prator) made a great catch in the end zone."
Quarterback Trent Edwards
(on Stanford's offensive performance) "It feels good. We had a really great week of practice. The offensive line took a lot of heat after last week's loss to Oregon. Our game plan was to come out and dominant up front. We got to give a lot of credit to our coaches. We had a great week of practice in terms of teaching us what to look for in their defense."
(on how much his rolling out kept WSU's defense off-balance) "I think it helped out a lot. It was one of the more tiring games for me in terms of getting out of the pocket and having to run the ball a lot. I was just feeding off the other 10 guys in the huddle. Just looking at the guys and their eyes and seeing how hard they worked and how hard we worked in the off-season, there's no reason why you should be tired in a situation like that. The game plan was a little bit different. They played a lot of cover two-man, cover zero bracket, where the middle was wide-open. If the first receiver wasn't open I was told all week to take off and run by Coach Harris. Fortunately, some plays were made down the field."
Flanker Justin McCullum
(on the win) "It was a great win. All sides of the ball - offensively, defensively and special teams - played great. It was great to have a real team win."
(on how badly the team needed the win) "The last couple of weeks were a little rough but we practiced real hard and worked on the little things, making sure we do everything right. This is a great feeling."
(on assessment of what worked offensively) "Pretty much everything was working. We did what we were supposed to do. The offensive line played awesome. It was definitely their best game so far this year."
Cornerback Nick Sanchez
(on the game-clinching interception) "I think we had a good pass rush because the ball came out quick. I just dropped to my zone and the ball was there so I just grabbed it."