Sept. 28, 2013
Missouri Head Coach Gary Pinkel
"We did a great job as a football team finishing. Sometimes you don't like (the game) like that but we were faced with some tough situations. At halftime we were not playing real well as a football team, but we did the things necessary in the second half. According to my calculations we won the second half 27 to 6 and we won 21 to 3 in the fourth quarter. It's about finishing and it was important, but obviously we still have some things to improve on."
On James Franklin through the first four games of the season:
"He's a good player and that is what good players do. Remember Chase Daniel used to do that, Blaine Gabbert used to do that. I mean how many times did we see Brad Smith do that? That's what good players do, they make big plays. The team looks for him, and obviously he made some plays out there."
On some mistakes Mizzou made to keep the game close for three quarters:
"If you look at the first half, we had the lead and we are doing okay, and then our defense gets the ball on the 48 yard line. If we score there, the whole game could be different momentum-wise. But instead, we fumble the ball right away and before you know it we are in a dogfight. Our defense made a huge play at the goal-line to end the half, so there are a lot of good things to take from it, but also things we need to improve on."
On the defensive play, especially in the second half:
"The touchdown drives in the first half were short, minute-long drives. I think we only had 25 plays at half compared to their 57, or something like that. So our defense was a little tired and (Coach) Steckel did a good job of adjusting in the second half. I was certainly pleased that we held them to more field goals than touchdowns as well."
On starting out 4-0 before SEC play:
"It's all about getting better. We are excited to get into SEC (play) and get going. We have eight games left, and now we got all of our non-conference games out of the way. We are excited that we are 4-0, but we can definitely get better."
MU Player Quotes
QB James Franklin
On second half execution:
"We have really been doing a good job so far. We have been fixing mistakes from the first half then try to apply what we learned."
On unbeaten record going into the SEC:
"I think it is really important. It is a big confidence boost. If we would have not gone undefeated in non-conference play, it is not like it would have been terrible, but it gives us a little chip on our shoulder knowing that we are 4-0."
Junior DE Kony Ealy
On the defense's effort:
"I think we could do better. We have made progress each and every day. We just need to improve from things from the following week a little better."
Sophomore WR Dorial Green-Beckham
On clicking with James Franklin, now that he is more comfortable with the offense:
"I feel like James is more comfortable with me out there on the field. He knows exactly where I am at all times, so he knows where and when to look for me."
On how Franklin has improved from last season:
"James came out this year playing really hard after we went through some struggles last year. He just went out there, fought just like all the rest of us, and wanted to show the SEC how much better we will be this year."
Senior OL Max Copeland
On the team's third quarter momentum:
"Ideally, we don't want to do it like that, but sometimes plays work and you capitalize off of that momentum. That is largely what our offense is about. We capitalize on big plays and get rolling."
Arkansas State Head Coach Bryan Harsin
"They're a good football team. You've got to make those plays. You've got to finish those drives. They had plays that they made, they had drives that they finished. When you're playing an opponent like Missouri, that becomes key. We did some good things. We moved the ball. When we got into critical situations, we came up with three and we needed to come up with seven."
On getting field goals compared to touchdowns:
"I think it can be deflating. It doesn't matter who you're playing. You want to get seven. That's the whole goal. You'll take three. Luckily, we have a kicker like Brian Davis that gets us three. Now, if we walk out of there with nothing, that's deflating."
On the performance of J.D. McKissic:
"You saw what he could do. We need to find more ways to get him the football. He made plays tonight. That's the bottom line. J.D. played exceptional tonight and did everything he could with the opportunities we gave him."
On not scoring any points on the final drive of the first half:
"We had no timeouts so we thought we had to throw it. The bottom line was we were going to come away with points. Just don't take a sack; we took a sack. In that situation, that's what you can't have happen. They made a good play on us and unfortunately, we ran out of time."
On the team's defensive performance:
"They played hard. You have to eliminate the big play. They're going to make a guy miss. That's why you have to have three or four around them. They can make one miss; they can't make four. I thought they continued to battle and put them on a short field."
On whether or not the defense got tired in the fourth quarter:
"I don't think tired. They didn't get discouraged. They came back and made some plays. We have to score. We have to change their mindset so our defense can continue to play the way they were playing. I thought they did a good job."
On the Missouri fumble in the second quarter that was blown dead:
"Unfortunately, it got whistled. If it hadn't been whistled, I don't know what would have happened. We ask our defense to get turnovers. Unfortunately, we had a turnover there too."
Arkansas State Players
Junior DB Kyle Coleman
On the Tiger fumble in the second quarter that was blown dead:
"I felt like we had momentum going our way. It was a bad call. Everyone feels it was a touchdown but we can't go against the refs so, it is what it is. Overall I think the momentum shifted tremendously."
On playing with more passion this week:
"The whole week in practice we just had that chip on our shoulder like we're going to go show the world that we're better than what we put on tape and we're better than what they've seen."
On whether or not the defense was tired late in the game:
"I think we were fine; we worked all summer, we're fine. It just comes down to inches. It's the small things, the details - that's what gets you beat and that's what it came down to."
On Arkansas State's defensive scheme:
"Our main thing to stop was the run. That's what we focused on the most but they have great receivers also. It was a battle; I can't say anybody on my team gave up, we fought until the end."
On the team's feeling after playing a competitive game:
"It's a big encouragement, I feel our team moving forward. We're almost at that point where we're clicking on point and I just feel sorry for whoever's going to get the bad end of that."
Sophomore WR J.D. McKissic
On his role in the offense on Saturday:
"It felt really good being a part of the game plan."
On playing Mizzou close for four quarters:
"It feels bad to lose, man. Knowing that we could have won that game, it hurts."
On competing against an SEC school on the road:
"At practice the whole week we talked about just competing and having fun and we just came out and competed."
On setting a school record on Saturday:
"That's big to put my name in the books and get the record. We still took the 'L' though."
Senior QB Adam Kennedy
On how the team will prepare for conference play:
"After these last two weeks (the bye week) is definitely much needed as we head into conference play. We set a goal at the beginning of the season that we wanted to be conference champions and that's what we have our sights on."
On increased running plays designed for him:
"I've been running pretty well the last couple of weeks so we definitely included in the offense more zone reads than we've had in the past and I think it helped a lot so I think we'll continue it, if not include more."
On not scoring on the final drive of the second half:
"It hurt going into halftime but I thought we played well in the third quarter and it all just kind of came unglued in the fourth."
On the team's struggles in the red zone:
"It's incredibly frustrating for all the guys; we're driving up and down the field and I don't know what happens in the red zone. It's a little thing here, a little thing there, you know. I'd have to watch the film - I can't really explain it. We're going to have to get more chances to our wideouts."
On completing a lot of passes in the middle of the field:
"They play that bend-but-don't-break defense; they were giving up the underneath a lot, we expected that. But where I would like to take more chances in the red zone. Not getting touchdowns has come back to hurt us time and time again."
On J.D. McKissic's performance:
"We realized we have to get [McKissic] the ball. He's so good. He was unbelievable tonight. I thought it was great and I think we'll just continue to find ways to use him."
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