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Sept. 6, 2008
PENN STATE POSTGAME QUOTES
Joe Paterno, Head Coach
Q: Joe, Can you tell us what happened to Jerome Hayes? Do you know the extent of the injury?
A: Yeah, he's got...the other knee with its ACL. It was bothering him. He worked so hard to get back. But it's his knee. When I say that I haven't heard that from a doctor but he did tell me it was the other knee. It was an ACL...That's it for a while.
Q: Joe, do you like how your team put aside their distractions and focused on the game?
A: Yeah, I was please with us. I thought we came out and really shocked them. We did a lot of things well. It was sloppy at times. They had that one drive just like Coastal Carolina had that one route when we just got a little bit out of position and a little careless. But other than that it was good. Our kicking game was good and the whole bit. But I think it was a good effort.
Q: Joe, you had a rough week last year leading up to the Wisconsin game and your team responded by one of its better games last year. It seemed like they did the same thing here today. Is there something about your team being able to respond to off the field distractions?
A: Gee, I don't even remember last Wisconsin game. I think you've got some people with character and a coaching staff as I have. And get a couple of other kids who are ready. I think it's a combination of things. I think you get good coaches and you got some kids who realize this is an opportunity to come through in someone else's adversity. We won't try to let them somebody - one or two people - disturb us that much that would affect our game. But we had a lot of respect for Oregon State. We looked at the tape from the Oregon State-Stanford game. We knew they should've beat Stanford... We knew that. I didn't think we were going to go off this early. That kind of put them on their back heels.
Q: You said that Quarless was going to be suspended and he dressed. Did something changed between now and Thursday when you announced his suspension?
A: Was Quarless there? Q: He dressed but yeah
A: How did he look?
Q: Coach could you analyze Darryl Clark's ability to throw the ball accurately up the middle and the composure he showed. A: We've said Clark had a lot of potential. You guys are tired of hearing me say it but I don't know how else to express it. I think we've got three good quarterbacks. And now Clark does a couple of things better than Devlin. I think if Devlin gets a shot he might end doing a couple things better than Clark. And Paul is in there every day at practice. I think we're lucky. We have three good guys. I think they're all getting better. They're paying attention to details, listening to Jay and anticipating lanes, getting the ball out there on time. So I'm pleased with all three. I'm please with a lot of people.
Q: Coach, the fake punt late was that a miscommunication? Is that something you guys wanted to do?
A: What fake punt?
Q: It looked like a fake punt.
A: It looked like one to me too but I don't think it was. I'd like to talk to Larry Johnson about that 'fake punt.' I think that he may have just juggled the ball or something like that and decided to take off. But it may have been a fake punt. I don't know. I let those guys - I give them a little freedom. But I never thought we would've fooled around with a fake punt when we had the ball game.
Q: What do you make of Royster's run? Six touchdowns in two games.
A: Well, he's a good back. That was too bad about that fumble there in the end. And he got a little tentative. He's got to put that behind him. But he's a good back. A solid back.
Q: Joe, could you talk about the game of Mickey Shuler had for you guys today?
A: It looked as if he played well. I don't see things. Everything that you guys see. You're probably from Harrisburg Area. I can't just watch for some things that are happening in the game and stick my two cents in there once in a while. Schuler had a couple good catches. And I think he played well. But he'll get better and better. I like him. I think he's a good ball player.
Q: Joe, with the two suspensions and now Hayes' injury, how does that affect your defensive line? Would you consider Rubin and some other players like that?
A: Well, I'd like to talk to Larry again. We're fortunate. We have some young kids. We have a kid playing inside who really should be a defensive end. We're short a guy now. We talked on Friday. That's some possibilities to make ourselves a little stronger inside. And be able to free up a player like McEowen. We'll sit down tomorrow morning and talk about things and maybe come up with something entirely different.
Q: Joe, talk a little bit about Aaron Maybin.
A: Maybin is going to play. I think he hadn't intended to play a lot. But he surprised the dickens out of me. He took three or four classes and he got an A. And it was a tough course in his major. He got out of the doghouse. He's a good football player. As long as he stays up with it. He's a quick kid. He's got a lot of great qualities and he'll be a fine football player.
Q: Joe, does this offense remind you of the '94 team. Just in terms of the potent offense through two games.
A: Somebody said something to me coming off the field. I can't get excited until we have some adversity. We just have to do some things. Maybe we won't do well on the road in hostile environments. I don't know yet. But it's been 14 years. I think it's much too earlier to make that comparison.
Q: Joe, could you talk about your offensive line? Have you been satisfied with how they've played? It seems it was easier today for your running backs.
A: We got shoved around a little bit in that third quarter. We haven't really played a lot of football. We'll have to look at the tapes and talk it out. I think they played well. There weren't many stupid penalties. I think we had one holding penalty. They came out of the huddle with some enthusiasm. I think they're playing well.
Q: You had a couple of guys that threw key blocks that led to touchdowns. Could you talk about the downfield blocking?
A: People don't appreciate how effective those open spots can make your running game go. Because a kid pops out there in the open. I think they all did a really good job. Those wideouts we have are really good football players. Every play they play all out. They hustle. When somebody else catches a football, they hustle to make a block for them that way. Brackett's got tremendous potential because he's big. He's 6'5" or something like that. He's got good speed and he's tough.
Q: Jordan Norwood set a career high for touches and yards. Could you talk about the development he's made?
A: He's pretty good but he's getting better. That comes with experience. It comes when there's time for the quarterback and wideouts. They did a job. Mike McQueary did a good job for those kids. He's better now than when we first got him. We worked hard. He's quicker, stronger. He's got good hands. He made some tough catches. He gets knocked around a little.
#18 Navarro Bowman
Q: Can you talk about the play of the linebackers?
A: Well waking up this morning and checking the linebackers box in the CDT explains it all to me. That's what got us going today. Oregon State is a really good team but we stepped up to the plate. We showed the fans and everybody what we really could do.
Q: Is it any different to prepare for a game after dealing with a week of off the field issues?
A: Not at all. We are grown men and we take responsibility for our own actions. We all have an obligation to the team. If we get ourselves into a jam, we have to get ourselves out of it. We have a goal as a team, and that is to win, win, win. The off the field distractions are not really important to us.
Q: Did you expect it to start out like this?
A: Of course I did. I look as myself as a great football player. I have had a couple of years to look up to some good linebackers. I'm just out there having fun. A lot of people say I have a nose for the ball, and I think my nose is working well.
Q: Can you talk about the injury to Jerome Hayes?
A: Yea it didn't look good. The doctor said coming off that we will have to hope the best for that outcome. I can't believe it happened to him again.
Q: Is it emotional to see a guy like Jerome go down like this again?
A: Yes. He has been such a big part of our team and everything we do, not just on the field but off the field as well. He sets a big atmosphere for our football team, and he sets the tone for our defense. That's going to hurt us a lot in our morality.
Q: Are you worried a little bit about your thin depth with the defensive line?
A: No I'm not worried about that right now. Maybe we could pick up another year here because everyone else seems like they can get it for guys. Hopefully we will work something out because he is such a hard worker, coming back from so much adversity. He had a whale of a football game today. It was fun because I was actually yelling at him again.
Q: How do you think the defensive line played?
A: They come out to fight. I think anytime they do what they did early, three and out, three and out, I think they were only in seventeen plays in the second quarter; it caused our offense to play great. We then don't have to get in a guessing game with all those things.
#24 Jordan Norwood
Gr./Sr., Wide Receiver
Q: Did Darryl say anything to you after you bailed him out with a couple of grabs?
A: Usually it's a point across the field and usually we know what that means. It's expected, we have been practicing for a long time throwing and catching the ball.
Q: You passed O.J. McDuffie for third in the all-time receptions list. What does that mean to you?
A: It means a lot. I saw him on the field and he said, "Congratulations." I'm assuming that's what he said congratulations for. He was a great football player, and he was a good person to really look up to. That means a lot to me. And I appreciate that he was able to say congrats to me.
Q: Can you talk about how you put aside the off field distractions and were able to rout Oregon State?
A: It's not easy to ignore it, but we know we have a good football team. So we need to ignore it otherwise we will lose a football game that we shouldn't lose.
#61 Stefen Wisnewski
Q: Can you talk about the way the offensive line played today?
A: I think we played well today. I think we are blocking well, run blocking and pass blocking. I don't think we have given up a sack and I don't think the quarterback has felt pressured. That's our goal, to run the ball and keep everyone off the quarterback.
Q: What has been the key to the success on the offensive line?
A: I think it is the experience and the continuity playing with each other really helps us make blocks and pick up blitzes. We have all seen it and done it together before.
Q: Did the offense want to show what they had against a solid team today after scoring so many points against Coastal Carolina last week?
A: We definitely wanted to show against a better defense that we could score points. We did that today so we are happy with our performance.
Q: Does Daryll Clark show that much accuracy in practice?
A: We have two good quarterbacks. He played very well today, and he played these two games very well. He did a great job of throwing it. We caught the ball extremely well. I am very pleased with that phase of our game.
Q: Where you surprised with how well he played today, making everything look so easy, looking so comfortable?
A. No I am not surprised. Maybe you people are. We are not, we see him like that every day.
Q: Can you comment on Daryll playing so well on third down, making several plays with his arms and his legs.
A: He has played very well so far. And again, I think that Pat is the same type of player.
Q: Back to Royster, he had a lot of runs on the outside and showed very good speed.
A: I mean you could look at him last year, and he would go 30-35 yards for the touchdown. He has very good vision, and he is a good ball carrier for us.
Q: How about your start for this season, 6 touchdowns in two games?
A: I was just informed that I am the first person with Joe Paterno to do it, so it is a great achievement. Hopefully we will keep moving forward. Our offensive line will keep working hard.
Q: How are you making it look so easy?
A: It isn't me. It is the line. When you get in the open you only have to worry about one other person.
Q: You make a lot of good runs outside, can you comment on that?
A: I really have been working on it in the off-season. I have been trying to get more breakaway speed, and I have sacrificed some weight for that. I think that it has helped me a lot. Q: What did you see on that long touchdown run, down the left sideline.
A: I noticed that there were two guys coming from my right side and I just tried to out-run them to the corner, and it worked out.
Q: Was that a play-fake run by Daryll? It seemed like a little bit of a delay when you got the ball.
A: It is one of our types of drop plays, he fakes it out to one of our receivers. It was planned.
Q: Your defense really shut them down today, can you comment on that?
A: I am extremely proud of shutting them down. We played a lot of zone defense today. Everyone played their responsibilities real well and we came away with the win.
Q: They kept going with the short stuff all day today. Did that surprise you? Did you think they were going to take a few more chances down field?
A: Maybe a few more, but we did expect a short game out of them.
Q: How devastating is it to loose Jerome Hayes?
A: It is always terrible. Any time a player like that goes down it is terrible. With Jerome he has battled and worked real hard in the off-season rehabbing his other ACL, and now it looks like he is going to have to do it all over. Everyone on the team is just going to keep Jerome in their prayers, and think about him everyday.
Q: What is your responsibility has a leader of this team, one of the captains and seniors?
A: I think as a whole we came together as a team. We know that we are handicapped in certain situations, especially on the defensive side of the ball. The guys knew they had to wise up. Jared and Ollie played with a lot of heart, and Gaines led the defense and did a heck of a job. Everyone just stepped up. We came out, knowing that we wanted to run the ball and Evan did a good job. We got the looks we saw in practice all week, and we were able to run the ball well.
Q: Did what happened this week almost unify the team?
A: Yea, I think any time you face adversity you have to rise up. It brings the team together when you understand the situation and you want to come together to overcome the situation.
Q: As one of the captain, do you go and talk to the guys in person, or do you address the squad as a whole?
A: It is mostly as a whole. Anytime there is a situation like that, you just want to let everyone know that other guys are going to need to step up. That is basically what it comes down to. The guys that came in today filled in some positions, stepped up and did a heck of a job.
Q: Did you guys need to make a statement today after beating Coastal Carolina? People were saying different things due to the fact that they were a 1AA team.
A: I think that was our focus all week. We knew Oregon was going to be a tougher team and we came out with a lot more pep in our step. They are a Pac10 team, and any time you can play a team from another conference you want to make a statement early on. They came all the way across the country looking to make a statement on us and we took the same approach with making a statement on them.
Q: Did you expect to dominate a big conference team like that?
A: You never expect to score on your first four possessions. But that is what we prepare for all week. We expect every play and run to go the distance. We got some great looks and Royster did a great job up front and Daryll played phenomenal. In big games like this guys will step up.
Q: Can you comment on Jerome's injury?
A: That stuff just happens. It is unfortunate, but it is apart of the game and an issue in the game that we play in. I feel for Jerome, but like I said before it happened to one of the strongest individuals on our team. He is a strong person and he has a strong support system with his family and everyone else behind him including the D-Line family.
Q: Did you know his injury was bad right away?
A: Just from the expression on his face and the reaction form the doctors. It was evident that it wasn't good. You could definitely tell.
9, Mark Rubin
Q: How did you guys match up on defense today, what'd you guys do out there?
A: "Honestly, we just played base defense. Every single man just did their responsibility. We had no mistakes, we communicated pretty well on all their formations. We played hard and ran to the ball every single play.
Q: There was one particular hit where you and Anthony sandwiched the guy, do you remember that at all?
A: I do, yeah. We were upset that he caught the ball, but that was just an example there - we don't ever want to have just one guy make the tackle, we want to have eleven guys get to the ball every single play. We were upset that he did catch a pass but when they do catch a pass, the secondary wants to punish them every single play.
Q: Can you talk about your interception?
A: That was just good. Scirrotto just did a real good job having inside coverage on him so that just allowed me to sink and play outside and the quarterback just tried to fit it in there and I just dove and was lucky to get my hands on it. So, playing wide receiver probably helped a little bit. I've had some practice at catching passes, I knew I wasn't going to drop it.
Q: Talk about what you guys did to make the Oregon State quarterback disappear
A: They did play well, they came prepared. It is tough coming from the west coast out to the east coast, it's a big time difference. We played hard, there really was no secret, we just stuck to our base defense, we just stayed focused. We knew it was going to be a good challenge. We were excited for this challenge and just came out hitting and ready to play.
17, Daryll Clark
Q: How did it feel to come out and finally show more of your arsenal?
A: We were very confident going into this week. We had a great practice leading up to the game this weekend. Joe talked to us and showed us how serious this was. Oregon was a team that had the potential to actually come here and steal one if we weren't too careful. I'm glad we took it serious and got the job done.
Q: How important is it for you to get big plays and keep those drives going?
A: Very important. And that is also a confidence booster. On 3rd down, 3rd and one, 3rd and two, if there's nothing there I can take off. Everything went well today. Offensively we run well, we pass block well, our running backs are doing great
Q: You seemed really comfortable today. Can you describe what it's like to stand back there and know everyone is going to do their assignment?
A: I felt pretty good about this game because of how we practiced this week. Our offensive line really didn't mess up with the missing blitzes. Everything they showed us on film, we came out and we made sure we got on them early, and our defense did a good job keeping them off the field.
#47, Josh Gaines
Q: Did you see what happened to Jerome [Hayes]? What is your reaction to what happened?
A: To tell you the truth, I didn't really see what happened. I was on the sideline and all the sudden I just saw him go down. When I saw him go down I immediately jogged down the field. It was kind of a replay from last year. I didn't know what happened I was just hoping he just tore something not so serious, not his ACL, I was hoping it was his MCL, I knew it was his knee as soon as I saw him leaning on his other knee. It's a tough loss, we've got to figure out some way to get through this.
Q: How do you feel for him after the way he came back?
A: I don't feel too good right now. It hurts to have a player like that go down. He's a great player, he does a good job in practice. He's a leader on the line. I look him as a little brother so it hurts to be down.
Q: As a team captain, what did you guys do this week to focus off the off the field issues and get this team ready for the weekend?
A: Coach Paterno did a good job with that. He came in and said we've got a few problems, we've got to keep focus on the game, we've got a game coming up and that Oregon State was going to come ready to play and they were. We just came out and we worked hard this week and it just showed.
#76, Gerald Cadogan
Q: It seems like you guys just brush it aside [off the field issues] and come out and perform well. Is that a function of the captains or just an individual thing?
A: It's the leadership of the seniors. Anytime you have something that goes like, as we call a storm, a distraction, that means everyone has to bond together and step up and that's what we did today.
Q: Did the captains take the leadership role in that and get everyone together?
A: Yes, the captains and the seniors. It's a collective thing. The mindset and the goal. We're on a goal to go on a mission this season, and that's the goal for the national title. With that goal in mind , you put everything aside and you go after that goal.
Q: Can you talk about the offensive line and how they performed today?
A: I think we did good. We were able to run the ball, we gave the quarterback time to run the ball, we put points on the board. I would say it was a pretty successful day.
Q: What did you guys talk about on the sidelines? During the game you guys were kind of huddled around.
A: We always talk about what plays will work if the linebackers are doing something we haven't practiced, just different odds and ends to sharpen things up.
Q: How has Daryll put his stamp on this offense?
A: He stepped up in a leadership role, calling the plays and making things happen with his feet as you saw - it was third down and long and he was able to get some things done, that's how he stepped up.
A: I was just looking to get some playing time today. I wasn't really sure how the game was going to turn out and our offense did amazing today. They showed that they can score at anytime and our defense definitely stepped up and we just came out with a message and I wasn't sure if I was going to get any playing time or not. So I worked hard on special teams, then I got in the fourth quarter and I was really excited.
Q: Can you describe what happened on that punt?
A: We came to the left and I think the punter saw Scirrotto coming off the left side. I came in to get the guy blocking me and I think he got scared and pulled it down and also my guy kind of left me and I was right there so I was like, 'Hey I'll take it'.
Q: What's it like to get a free hit on a punter like that?
A: It was a good feeling. Just knowing that everyone was just looking at you and that just pumped up the crowd, because that was when it was 14-0. So, that gave us great position to get another score and make it 21-0 and that's a hard deficit to come back from.
Q: You touched on the defense. Obviously there's been a lot of tension on the offense and how they're putting together some great games. This defense today handle an Oregon State team that has a very talented group. Just talk about that performance.
A: Like I said I think our defense really stepped up today. A lot of people have questioned our linebacking group and stuff. So, I think we just came out here and executed our game plan really well and basically just did really well stopping them and just playing our game.
A: We've been working for over three years now. He's (Darryl Clark) is a hard worker and he really deserves what he's getting right now, every bit of it. He makes good reads and good throws. It's fun to catch from him.
Q: What was it like to get three receptions today? I mean you've always been working pretty hard in the blocking game and haven't gotten too many balls thrown to you. What was it like to get on the end of a few of those?
A: Receptions are always like treats. Its always nice to get after you're down in the trenches blocking and stuff and then you get to go out on a pattern and catch a ball. It's always a plus.
Q: How dangerous does Clark's versatility make him on third down?
A: Yeah, it's really versatile with him. He can run, he can throw, so the defense; you're always going to have them guessing. They can't just cover the pass. They have to have someone covering him too so it gives us a lot of different aspects and different ways to go on third down.
Q: Last week you guys said that the offense wasn't totally unveiled yet. How much did we see today and are you guys still bringing new elements in?
A: Yeah, I mean we game plan from week to week and we do what's best against that particular defense. And we did what was best against Oregon State today and came out with a big win.
Q: After distractions, how were you able to come up with that effort today?
A: You know, we've been through so much the past couple of years and it just goes to show how strong we are together and how close we are. Everybody makes mistakes and stuff like this happens and it's just a little adversity that you have to fight through and I think we are doing a great job with or without the guys. You know, we're going to fight to the end.
Q: With the injury to Jerome Hayes, how do the linebackers recover from that?
A: That's going to be devastating. Jerome is a great player and he's very important to our defense. But, this sort of stuff happens in football and you have to be able to adapt and go with it and our younger guys have to step up and be ready to play and step in. It's going to be tough without him but we are just going to have to pull through.
Q: You talked about how the secondary knew they were going to throw the ball a lot. What kind of statement do you think you guys made on both sides of the ball today?
A: No, I don't think it's a statement. We are just ready to play. All aspects of the game we're ready to stop the run, we're ready to stop the pass. We worked hard all off-season and we're very focused right now and we're doing great things. Today we did a great job. We're just excited to be out here each week, being able to play.
Oregon State head coach Mike Riley quotes
Q: Could you talk about the consistency of your quarterback play?
A: I think Lyle (Moevao) made a lot of very good plays. I think they got us in situations where we needed to convert and we didn't convert. We missed some opportunities. They mixed up the coverages. They had a good rush. Pressure was always applied; that's just Penn State's m.o. They did a good job with that today. I just wish we could've converted some of those early third downs.
Q: How disappointed were you in the performance of your defense?
A: I think you have to give (Penn State) credit. They played very efficient football and were very physical. I was disappointed in some missed plays we had and some missed tackle opportunities.
Q: What is your general evaluation of your team's performance?
A: I am disappointed, but I know that our team has a lot of football left and a lot of football in them. I think we will be fine.
Q: What did you think of Daryll Clark?
A: Physical. Really physical. I thought he made some very good throws. I thought that that first corner route was a beautifully anticipated throw. Besides that, he hit guys who were open. He had protection. He did what they needed him to do. He looked impressive when he ran the ball on third down. I liked that.
Q: Do have any regrets on how you set your schedule up this season with the first two games being on the road?
A: No, no, no. My regret is that we didn't give them a better game today. So, when we do this game again, we will do better. Hopefully, we will learn from it. I really think the season plays out according to the improvement of your team. Win or lose today, we have to get better and, obviously, after today, we have a lot of getting better to do. No regrets. We had an opportunity and we didn't come through on it. I would do it again in the future.
Q: Did you get a sense that your team was overwhelmed by the atmosphere?
A: It is a great atmosphere. It is wonderful. It's a great picture of college football. But, I never really felt that. The overwhelming part was just the play on the field. We weren't making plays and they were.
Q: What did you think about the performances of Evan Royster and Jordan Norwood today?
A: Golly. I think they are very good. They are relentless; I will say that about them. I think you give them a lot of credit because they are very good players but I have to look at it in terms of what I saw from us and we have to tackle better.
Q: Was it a nice experience to get a chance to talk to Coach Paterno before the game? A: It was awesome. I appreciated him spending that time with me.
Oregon State Player quotes
Brandon Hughes, Cornerback
Q:How tough was it to face a mobile quarterback like that?
"All we had to do was hit him. He was a big back and all we had to do was hit him. We've played a lot more mobile quarterbacks than that, not taking anything away from the way he played, but if we would have come out and executed our game plan and tackled it probably would have been a different outcome. Especially when he was running the ball, all we had to do was hit him. We had him in the backfield several times, we just have to wrap up and bring him down."
"We have to get better. We have a lot of things to shore up, especially on the defensive side. To get a win would be a tremendous boost for our team's confidence. Our focus should just be on getting better and being there for our teammates that need a pick-me-up."
Does that make next week a must win game?
"Every game is a must win game. Yeah, especially at home. We have the home field advantage. We have to come out and dominate. We just can't win. We have to have a great outing against Hawaii so we can have some momentum going into USC, which I believe is two weeks later. If we go home and practice well and play well, we'll be alright."
How about Penn State's receivers?
"They were a good group of receivers, but we face similar guys like that in the Pac 10 every week. The game, it just folded that way. We have things to shore up in the running game and we have things to shore up in the passing game."
How frustrating was it stop them on the first two downs, but then get to third down and give up the first down?
"It's demoralizing. You work so hard to get them into a manageable third for yourself as a defense and then you get them in a situation and they make a play. Then you do it again in the same series and the make a play. That was the story today."
Jacquizz Rogers, Running Back
Were you surprised to get so much work? "I wasn't surprised. We had been working on it all week and I got my chance and I took advantage of it."
"It was a hard loss. We got embarrassed really, but it is something you just have to build off of and get better in the future."
"Guys might think, just because I'm small I go down without wrapping up, but I just run hard."
"We have some things we can build off of. Coming in this stadium and establishing a long drive like we did, that's pretty hard with the crowd and all."