Sept. 3, 2010
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - Head Coach Bill Lynch met with members of the media on Friday to discuss his team's 51-17 win over Towson on Thursday, Sept. 2.
Below is a partial transcript of the press conference.
Head coach Bill Lynch - 9/3/10
"After getting a chance to review the tape I feel the same as I did last night. It was a good win for us. It was kind of a strange game in the fact that when I was in here last night I didn't really realize the disparity in time of possession. We didn't have the ball very much. We didn't have a lot of plays and certainly to score that many points, it was a field position game where our defense created field position and our kicking game created field position. Offensively, we played pretty well while the ones were in there. Particularly, I thought Ben (Chappell) was on. (There were) a couple plays you would like to have back but for the most part he did a good job. He did a good job in the running game of getting us in the right situation a few times. I thought Damarlo (Belcher) obviously had some big plays and that was helpful. Teddy Bolser showed himself some and having Darius (Willis) running like that, it seems like it's kind of a magical number there when he rushes for a 100 yards and it certainly does something for our offensive football team.
"Defensively, when our ones were in there they really played pretty well other than a few big plays. The run, the fourth-and-two, where their quarterback got it down to the 5-yard line we just over pursued it. It wasn't a lack of effort, it was a broken play really. It was a play-action pass off a bootleg and then he took off and went with it, and the first guy missed and then the other guys over pursued and he cut back. That's a learning situation and then the touchdown pass was really kind of the same way. Mitchell Evans had the coverage and he broke and I think he would have made a tackle for a first down. But Tyler Replogle's going a hundred-miles per hour and ran into Mitchell. He knocked him off, so that's really kind of what happened there. But other than that I thought our defense played pretty solid.
"I thought our kicking game was good. I thought our kickoff return, it was good to see Duwyce (Wilson) and Nick Turner
both get a chance to run some back. I think our guys up front did a good job with that. We punted it very well. (Jeff) Sanders in his first game long snapping was solid, and (Nick) Freeland and (Mitch) Ewald were both pretty good.
"For our first game, we had no turnovers, very few penalties and no route breakdowns in the kicking game. I think those were some of the things that I know I had a concern about going into it to make sure we were solid. There's a lot of things we can correct. We certainly can't over pursue the ball and give up a fourth-and-two broken play, when it gets down to the five, and we can't give up long touchdown passes.
"Offensively. we weren't very good on third down and that's something we have spent a long time on and will continue to do so, and I expect us to be better there. The other positive in the game was the fact we were able to play so many kids. When we get in here this afternoon with the kids...they all have to watch because they are going to see themselves playing. It's very much like camp in terms of watching practice tape, so that part of it is real positive, and I think we learn from that and we'll get better and its certainly puts us into position this week where we can keep competing in some positions and keep working to get better. We have something where we can really work of right now rather than just going against each other and then we'll get into Western Kentucky later in the week.
"Our schedule and how we're going to do it is after we work out today I'm giving them off the whole weekend. I think they need a break, deserve a break, if they do go home they have to be back Sunday night for training table because we do have class on Monday, so I want them here Sunday night. We'll practice Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday in very much the same mode that we practiced in camp. Friday we are going to give them off because that'll be a big recruiting day for our staff where we can get out and then we'll practice again on Saturday morning and get a good head start on Western Kentucky. We'll give them Saturday afternoon to Sunday off and then we'll finally be in a regular routine on that Monday. Up until now with summer school going 10 days into camp and move out day and all the other things going on, there wasn't a real routine to camp, but I think our guys handled that pretty well, including playing on a Thursday night, which is different the first week of class where their minds are going from one syllabus to the other then coming over here to practice. All in all, it was a good week and I'm glad where we're at, and I know we're going to get better. I really am happy we have an off week where we can work on some things before the grind of 11 straight weeks begins."
On playing time last night:
"It's tough, not only to get them out and keep them healthy, but to give other guys chances. We wanted (Matt) Ernest to get enough reps because he hadn't played corner. We wanted (Andre) Kates to get some reps and then Kates got hurt, so he missed a lot of opportunities halfway through the third quarter on. We wanted (Lenyatta) Kiles and (Lawrence) Barnett to get a lot of work because they were moved to safety. Then we wanted all the defensive ends to get work. It is a balancing act to get the work in you need and like you said and develop the continuity. But I think the other thing is looking at the big picture that we did all the way thorough camp knowing we had 16 days between the first game and the second game. We went into the first game with the idea we were going to play a lot of guys. We wanted the competition to continue, we were hoping our depth would wear on them as the game went on. The game was kind of a crazy game because of the wild swings and field position and the fact that we were able to score those two touchdowns late in the second quarter. That probably changed a little bit of what we were planning on doing."
On competition for starting spots:
"I think we want to make it competitive all season, but I certainly think by the time we get to the Big Ten season. Each game is different but the top priority is winning against Western Kentucky and then winning against Akron. Certainly as we go along, we've tried to take a big picture look at this thing all the way since spring practice, in terms of it's a long season, it's a 12-game season. No one game is more important than the other. We want to be as good as we can be all the way through November. All those things will be taken into consideration as we go through the next few weeks."
On how the game impacted the competition:
"My initial thought is (the starting spots) are still open. I watched a continuous copy a couple times, so I watched everything from the flow of the game and all the special teams and everything. I'm going off my impressions. I haven't sat and talked with the staff. There may be a position coach who feels a little bit different about something once we sit down on Monday. I didn't see anything that clearly showed itself because I don't think that would be fair to anybody, especially to the guys who might have been playing for the first time, that first game. We'll know more, I don't want to say a whole lot, until the whole staff has a chance to sit down and really talk on Monday."
On the team's pass rush:
"(Towson's quarterback) Chris Hart was pretty elusive. We did flush him some, but we did let him get loose some too. The second half we went to pretty base coverage. We played a lot of our two deep packages and tried to keep the ball in front of us, and for the most part we were pretty good. When you do that you're not blitzing and you're relying on the front four and they have five blockers plus a back on the front four, so that gave him a chance to run around a little bit. But we did what we wanted to do, we didn't have a lot of blitzes, and really when we went into it we didn't have a real large game plan defensively because we had so many guys playing for the first time. We didn't want to confuse them plus we didn't want to have a big game plan because we didn't know what we were going to see. You can spend a lot of time in an opener putting in a lot of exotic blitzes and then they come out in a completely different offense and you've wasted all that time. It's really the same way offensively because you're never really sure what you're going to get going into an opener."