Oct. 27, 2012
Missouri Head Coach Gary Pinkel
"Well, it feels good to win. It always has; it always will. I was proud of our team and how we battled. Kentucky's had a lot of injuries the last four or five weeks. They're going through a lot of stuff that we're going through too. I'm really understanding for that. That being said, I think we played okay. I was frustrated with some of the kicking plays in the first half that had huge field-position ramifications. I thought that we settled down a bit and played very conservatively on offense and used the clock. As far as running the football, we did things we haven't done around here in a long time. We made an adjustment - that's what we did. I thought the defense played exceptionally well. The first couple of series I didn't think so, but from that point on, I thought they played well. It was a huge difference in the second half when you get a turnover from the 12-yard line and also Will Ebner knocking the ball out and then E.J. (Gaines) picking it up and scoring. That's similar to the two big errors that we made against Georgia, and you're not going to win football games doing that. It's nice to see that on our side of the football. Anyway, I'm pleased for our team and it's been weeks since there's been winning around here, so it's been tough. We have great challenges ahead of us, and we're excited about that. It's good to get back in the winning circle."
On replacing Corbin Berkstresser with James Franklin in the second half:
"We needed a play. With great restriction, we got the OK from the medical staff. Corbin (Berkstresser) was struggling. He's not the first quarterback to ever struggle at all and won't be the last. I got on the phone with Coach Yost, and we talked about it in our Thursday staff meeting that if we got in that situation that we would most likely put James in and let him know the series before we would do it. We also were very, very controlled in what we had in the run and the pass. And then we decided to just keep him in even though the score was the way it was just to get some reps and get some confidence back. I think any time you get a veteran player that comes in, who was the MVP of the bowl last year and had great success as a sophomore and plays the position and knows it well, I think that gives our offense a little bit of a lift. It's natural. It's nothing against Corbin (Berkstresser), it's just natural."
On the success on the ground:
"It was great, it really was. The blocking was there and getting Mitch Morse back was really good. At the end, with five or six minutes left, they (Kentucky) never got back on the field and we decided to take a knee there at the end. There's no sense in scoring. It was good. Our defense really played exceptionally well. I was very pleased with that. They got their mojo back a bit."
On Dorial Green-Beckham getting three straight balls thrown his way:
"It was just playing calling based on what the defense presented to us. If the defensive line had been lined different, we probably would have handed the ball off. You just count the number of people in the box and threw it to the perimeter to him. We need to get the ball downfield more. It's difficult to drive like that. I think we were really good on third-downs. We had a lot more third-and-short, and that increases your chances of success there. I think he's going to be really good at getting the ball down field. But we need to get the ball downfield more, and we're aware of that."
On Marcus Murphy's struggles on special team:
"I'm surprised at a lot of things. Does anybody have any idea how hard we work on the kicking game --the attention to detail, the minute details of every phase of the kicking game? We had a PAT blocked in the A-gap. We muffed a couple of punts. We ran into a punter and only got a five-yard penalty, thank heavens. I haven't seen him (Murphy) drop a punt for four weeks. So, that's why this is a crazy business. But I'm responsible. He drops the ball, I'm responsible for it. I have to do a better job."
On Andrew Baggett making seven straight field goals:
"That's really good. You can see him getting better in practice, too. I hate to say that (knocks on table). You really see him getting better in practice. He's working hard."
MU Player Quotes
TB Kendial Lawrence
On today's running game:
"It's really big because when you got guys who are struggling or aren't fully healthy you have to go out there and run the ball to be able and relieve those guys."
On the spark the team felt when Franklin was put back in at quarterback despite the injury:
"Just seeing him want to be out there and then the coaches telling him it's ok for him to go out and play, it was a huge lift for our team."
DT Sheldon Richardson
On his forced fumble and return on Kentucky's first drive of the game:
"They tried to double-team me and I was able to split through the middle of them. He was carrying the ball a little loose and he bobbled the handoff a little bit, and I just went at him and made a play."
On the first SEC win and how big of a confidence boost it is for the team:
"Oh yeah, big win for us. Big win and an even bigger momentum builder."
On Franklin coming in to relieve Berkstresser:
"We kind of figured that it was a possibility for James Franklin to get in the game today, just to see his progress and how he felt, and he went out there and did what he could."
QB James Franklin
On how he felt out there and his probability for next week's game at Florida:
"(I'm) Like 90 percent. I'm pretty sure, unless I get hit by a car or something, that I'll be starting next week."
On trying to get the ball out quick and not take any big hits:
"I was a little sore out there and so I was definitely thinking about it and was trying to get the ball out quick. It felt pretty good when I was moving north and south."
WR Dorial Green-Beckham
On James Franklin coming into the game after Berkstresser was struggling:
"I didn't know, but when he got in it was big for us and for him. It was nice to see what he could do after his injury."
"Good feeling to get the first SEC win right here at home. Kentucky is still a good team, and we came out here and executed the game plan really well today."
Kentucky Head Coach Joker Phillips
On turnovers during the game:
"I like the effort that this football team's playing with. We started fast offensively. We hadn't turned the ball over in a few games, but we put the ball on the ground on the first drive … to win on the road, you have to first of all not turn the ball over."
On handling the ball offensively:
"To win on the road, you have to play as a team, not turn the ball over and give the defense a short field. Get the stops…. I thought we ran the ball well early. We've got to be able to throw and catch though. We went from a team we thought was pretty good at throwing and catching the ball, to a team that's struggling to throw and catch."
On Missouri's defensive shifts:
"You've got to be totally focused. You've got to understand the forces that you have. You've got to understand your quarterback's force. They shifted real sharp and our guys were jumping off-sides."
On his team's defensive performance:
"After three quarters we had given up 188 yards on defense, that's a pretty dang good day on the road. We brought up three turnovers, two on defense and one in the special teams area. It was a pretty good day against a team of this caliber. I thought our defense held up…. Got to say, our defense played good enough to win. The thing we need to do is keep them out of the end zone, make them kick field goals and get those short fields."
On Franklin entering the game as Missouri's quarterback:
"Nothing surprises me in this league. Nothing surprises me. It surprised me when he didn't go in to start the game. But he's a competitive player and he's done a good job of getting himself healthy enough to play."
TB Raymond Sanders III
On the game:
"I don't know, really. We just kept losing the ball I guess. They did a great job getting it out and we gotta come back and work on that."
On what happened after good start:
"They changed and adjusted to it, but we have to come out as a team and make plays and continue to keep working with it. They were doing a lot of things, a lot of moving and shifting and stuff, which was confusing, but we have to come to work and make sure we are adjusting and that we make plays."
"It was frustrating because we basically gave them the game, really. We had a couple penalties, we got two interceptions that we needed to get points in. So I feel like we should have won. We just handed the game to them. We have to come out and work and make sure we don't give the game away."
QB Jalen Whitlow
On possibly losing his rhythm after being pulled in the first quarter:
"I don't think so. Usually it does because you want to stay in there, stay warm, and stay going. It happened like that so I just gotta bounce back."
On what was different about the first two drives:
"We just came out with fire. We just came out hard and drove right through. We just gotta have that fire the whole game. We have to have the focus and the drive to pound it down their throats by getting the pass, securing the pass, and executing plays."
On Mizzou's defensive adjustments:
"I think it's more what we do than what they do, cause if we handle our business and execute like we're supposed to and do our assignments, I think we'll be fine."
QB Patrick Towles
On the next three games:
"You know, this is the SEC. You're gonna play high quality teams each week. You take the loss. It sucks losing. Losing is never fun, but you gotta go back and watch the film, go back and play better. Because the way we played today, or the way I played today, isn't gonna cut it."
On any regrets by burning his redshirt:
"No not at all. I came here to play. I talked to the coaches and they gave me the option for what I wanted to do. But I want to play and I want to play a lot better than I did today. If I play well these next three games, it will give me a leg up next year and hopefully I can play a lot better than I did today."
LB Avery Williamson
On a missed opportunity:
"I definitely do think that. In certain situations in the game we didn't take advantage of what we had today. It's frustrating. Offensively we couldn't get the ball moving. Defensively we had some turnovers and we couldn't score either and I should have had a pick-six. It just shocked me and I didn't adjust to it well and dropped the ball. I should have returned that for a touchdown. It's a total team effort and we really didn't come through."
"We just gotta go out and keep working and keep fighting through it. We have to win out these next three games. I thought we were going to come out with that win and it shocked me in the end that we didn't. They're a good team and they took advantage of the day."
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