K-State Holds Weekly Press Conference

By: Courtesy: Kansas State University
By: Courtesy: Kansas State University

Head Coach Ron Prince

Head Coach Ron Prince
Opening statement...
“We’ve gone back here over the last several days, hours, and tried to assess where we are almost as if it were the end of the season looking forward or as if it were the end of the regular season looking into the bowl period. We’re trying to figure out those things that we’re doing real well, those things we need to improve on and what are opponents are really good at going forward and the challenges that we might have.

On special teams...
“I’m real pleased in the kicking game with our punter, I’m real pleased with our place kicker and I’m real pleased with our returners. Some things we need to work on in that area are obviously our kickoff return unit is not what it has been and our coverage has not been very good. We have not adjusted well to the new rule. This has not helped us. This is something that we have to continue to evaluate and continue to try to improve. Basically speaking, our kickoff returns are the same as what is being returned against us, and that’s not a situation that we’ve had since we’ve been here. At the same time, our field goal block unit has not been able to block a field goal. We’re being very aggressive with it and because we haven’t really hit home, (Missouri State) felt comfortable enough to try to fake one on us and they were successful. Those are some of the things that we’re going to try to work on there.”

On the offense...
“Offensively, I’m real pleased with our rush average – particularly with James (Johnson). I’m real pleased with the kind of efficiency that we’re trying to have on third down and in the red zone. At the same time, turnovers and penalties and really our yards per passing attempt are not where they should be considering how many times we’ve thrown the ball. (The yards per passing attempt) number is way to low. A really good passing offense should always be over seven yards per passing attempt and we’re right around six and some change and we’re giving up about the same thing.”

On the defense...
“From a defensive standpoint, I’m real pleased with how we’re attempting to take the run away from people. We’ve seen some creative schemes and we’re going to see some even more creative schemes. I’ve been real pleased with how we’ve been able to handle the third down, we know we’ll be challenged in that area again. I’m real pleased with how we’re trying to pressure the quarterback. All three of those things are very positive for us, but a lack of turnovers, the penalties that we’ve created and the yards per pass we’re giving up is just way too much.”

On the penalties...
“All I’ll say about it is right now we’re giving up about 133 yards and have had two games now with 16 penalties. Against good competition that’s going to be more than we can overcome. We’re doing everything, not only by word but also by deed, try to go back to the very basics of what it is and try to explain why these things are happening. I think what’s happening in the game of college football is that players are getting spread out and isolated more and more and so defenders are more and more challenged by being able to beat a block in the open field and tackle properly with a player who has space around him in the open field. We’ve been the victim of that and we’ve been the benefactor of that on offense – creating that same space and it’s really putting defensive players under a lot of pressure. At the same time, our blockers in the open field, around the edge where they’re in plain sight, they have also been challenged by the athleticism of some of those defenders. That’s where we’ve gotten some holding penalties. All those other penalties of jumping offsides and pre-snap penalties, those are just foolish and those are the things that erode any ability to put drives together. With all that said, I do not want to take away the aggressiveness of our players. We have to adjust our play to the speed of the game as it’s being played. We have to make sure that we’re constantly vigilant about the technique that’s appropriate, but we will adjust to this situation and make every effort to improve it for sure.”

Senior Linebacker Ian Campbell
On the difficulty of focusing during a bye week...
“I feel like sometimes it can be a little easier, because your games can come so fast when you have game week after game week. We have Monday here and you’re doing corrections, then once Tuesday and Wednesday are gone, the game is there. You can only put so much physical work in for those first three or four days. You don’t get to make any corrections on Friday. You’re on the bus or plane getting ready to play your next opponent.”

On playing Texas ...
“I definitely don’t think Texas will take us lightly after last year. I think they will be ready for us, and obviously we’re playing at Texas so I think they’ll be ready for whatever we’re going to bring at them.”

Junior Wide Receiver Deon Murphy
On what he wants to accomplish during the bye week...
“Everything possible; were going to try to make this a better preparation week for us. We’re going to have a tough one up next for us, but we’ll get through it.”

On how he grades the receivers through three games...
“I think I’m doing really well, and we all know that Jordy Nelson is doing really well. As a team and as a receiving unit, there are a lot of things that we need to work on as far as timing, route running, and blocking, but we’re going to be just fine.”

On what he has learned from Jordy Nelson...
“Just practice hard, move fast, and work hard. That’s what coach wants, and that’s what I see out of him. And that’s what a lot of us have learned, it’s not just me. The whole team has learned from him.”

Senior Wide Receiver Jordy Nelson
On his record-setting perfromance...
“It really doesn’t mean anything to me right now. I just wanted to go out there and play well, which I think we did for the most part. We got a big win, and we just have to keep to momentum going.”


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