Coaches and player quotes following USU win over San Jose State 34-33

SAN JOSE STATE POST-GAME QUOTESUSU-San Jose State – 11-12-11Head Coach Mike MacIntyre”We’re playing as hard as we can play. They made a couple plays in the fourth quarter and we didn’t. I thought we had a couple picks and they came down with the ball. I thought we had a couple catches, and the ball just falls out at the last second. It was a matter of inches. Our kids are playing really hard and I’m really, really proud of them. We played well enough to definitely win the last two games. There’s no doubt whatsoever. We just came up on the short end. We just got to keep fighting and keep finding a way to finish the games. We had some chances and couldn’t get it done. On the 67-yard field goal attempt:We felt it was the best chance (to win). He (Harrison Waid) was kicking them over 60 (yards) in warm-ups. Defensive End Travis Johnson:It came down to the end again and it just slipped away. Another heart-breaking loss. On the mood of the team:It’s just down right now. We all know we have two more games, have to come back next week and keep playing like every week. Right now we’re hurt. We got to keep fighting next week and the week after that. On turnovers:We try to play our hardest, do whatever we can. Turnovers are something we talk about every day, something that’s a key to winning. We try to get five and hope for even more. It’s a good number to get, but it still didn’t come out in our favor. On no longer being bowl eligible:It wasn’t the reason why we wanted to keep playing, but it was in the back of our minds. We all wanted it. It just didn’t work out. We knew we close, that we’d have to win the next three. We all wanted it. It just didn’t work out. Quarterback Matt Faulkner:You can’t put it any other way (other than a tough loss). It’s crushing. It’s the same as last week. You just lose it in the fourth quarter. You hate it when you can’t come through and just somehow finish a game. It came down again to they made a few more plays than we did and it’s been the same story the last couple of weeks. It’s a bummer but we just got to come back and fight these last two games and end the season on a good note with two wins. On trying to score with 47 seconds left:We’ve scored in less time than that in a numerous times at the end of the game. I got to make some better throws. They made a couple more plays than we did. It’s unfortunate, but that’s the way it is. They’re (passes) in their hands and the DBs just make some good plays. I probably could have made it a little more perfect – in my mind. When they know you’re going to pass it dow field like that, windows get real tight. It’s just a crushing loss when you’re so close. You just can’t get a full grasp on it. On settling for field goals:So, so frustrating. We got to find a way to score touchdowns when we get in the redzone. Somehow, some way. It’s going to be upsetting watching the film seeing how close we were to scoring and one guy breaking free and stuff like that. As an offense and me as the leader, we’ve got to find a way. Field goals are good, but touchdowns are great. In games like this, if we have even two touchdowns instead of two field goals it wouldn’t even be close in the end. On no longer being bowl eligible:Bowl game or not, we can still end the season on a good note. We can still get two wins and go 5-7. There’s a lot to play for. It stinks but there’s a lot to play for, and there’s a lot of positives to take out of today. Utah State Head Coach Gary Andersen”What can I say? Where can I start, obviously, a really great victory. We have a tough group of young men, we started slow but what a way to end it. I told them last week when they were down five and a half count and this one they were down nine and three quarters count. But they didn’t drop off the map, they stepped up and made plays. It sounds so simple and so easy but they stepped up and made plays against all odds, five turnovers to one. These kids just kept fighting the battle, I am very, very proud of them. “This was a tremendous victory. Two wins in a row is a step for us as a program and four wins in total, we are still swinging and fighting. There are a lot of things left in this season so this is a great group of kids facing a lot of adversity and football means a lot to them. Every game has come down to the fourth quarter and we have found a way these last two games to get it done. Everyone wants to ask why and all the credit goes to the kids. We haven’t really tweaked anything, they just have been making plays at the end of games and I am proud of them.”Are you guys aware of what will happen in the next three weeks?”We are aware of where we sit and what our situation is but you know I wanted them to be aware before this game that even this was a big game. To take a step as a program, this was a big time us. You can’t put a big tag game on a program like that. I felt when we did it last year, we reacted poorly. But we know what we have left, three guaranteed games especially for our seniors.”On fourth quarter:”You play every play and play every quarter. Our kids will continue to fight and play and I think there will be some games I can look back and say we put together four quarters.”What was going through your head the last 5 seconds?”Yes interesting, you get your big ben (hail mary defense) play in there, it is something that you work on a few times a week. I looked at the safeties and they were lined up different so we took another timeout and got them lined up correctly. You never know what is going through the mind in those situations and good job for getting the block.”On Robert Turbin:”He is a hardnosed kid, I love him he keeps on fighting week in and week out. It’s the work ethic that wins games and his is contagious. I have seen this team fighting and battling and Robert Turbin has been at the front of that.”Compare this year’s team to last year’s team?”I think we have leadership that is continually growing. When a team will challenge itself, it cannot be consistently challenged by coaches it has to challenge itself. Football is very important to them and their love for each other is as good as it has ever been on a team.”Junior Wide Receiver Matt Austin”It feels great to get the win. Our main focus was the fourth quarter, once it started we huddled up to get some momentum to start off with. It is a great win and it was a must-win for us to get to the WAC championship.”Talk about putting yourself in a position to make the catch in the end zone to take the lead?”It starts with Adam Kennedy, its starts with his trust in me to just throw the ball up. Position wise, wherever the ball is at I just have to stop and attack it, that is what we are taught. It’s really not even a good position, it just attacking the ball and at any point in time I will have a chance. It was a low key back corner of the end zone play, my defender fell down and that was about it.”Talk about the last drive of the game?”I’ve got confidence in Adam, I’ve got confidence in the offensive line, our receivers, our running backs, and in Coach Baldwin making the right play call. What was going through my head was just winning and I want the ball to be honest with you, I want the ball at all times and if I get that chance, than I am going to make that play like I did.”Talk about Tarren Lloyd blocking the potential game-winning field goal?”Honestly I was knee-down on the sideline because I was scared, anything can happen. I am glad that he blocked that kick. We spent a lot of time on special teams with blocks and anything on special teams, that was one of our main focuses to win games. It starts with special teams and he made a big play.”Junior Cornerback Will Davis”I was excited to be out there, I am coming into the starting spot now and I am embracing it and everyone on our defensive back squad knows our rolls. I think that at the beginning of the year we were worried about ourselves and now everyone is stepping into their rolls and everyone is taking part in what we do. It was crazy the whole way, there were some ups and downs, there were some fumbles and the defense thought “oh no,” and we had to go back in. At the same time we were better mentally and we knew we had to make the stops. There were times that we did make the stops and there were times that we didn’t but at the end of the day we made more plays at the end than they did and we got the win. I’m smiling, all around the whole defense and how we were able to turn it around even in the second half of the year. To know that our goal is to go to a bowl game and every game we need defense and everyone now is starting to get in that state of mind. We are getting stronger and stronger mentally, we are starting to win in the fourth quarter and we are starting to figure out how to win these close games now.”After the touchdown to take the lead, talk about the final defensive stand?”I was excited. I was excited for this opportunity, even if they would have thrown it up but I am not going to lie when they lined up for the field goal my heart was beating. I couldn’t have a say on the play, it changed from them throwing it up and me being able to make a play to we hope we get a miss or we need to block it. It was scary, you have no say on it. He either makes it or we block it. It was scary but once we blocked it and Bobby Wagner recovered it I was running down the field to give him a hug because we knew it was over. It was scary but exciting. I am glad we got it and we are all smiles now.”Junior Running Back Robert TurbinOn game and going over 1,000 yards and records:”We overcame adversity in that game, we were able to finish strong and as far as breaking records, I guess that it is just part football. Going over a thousand yards is something that you work hard in the off-season to be able to do. My team and my coaches were able to help me achieve that again for the second time in my career and I am very thankful. I am very thankful to God.”This was the second straight week with fourth quarter magic, what is going on?”We are playing better in the fourth quarter. We have a higher tempo when the fourth quarter comes around, I don’t know if you noticed or not but when the fourth quarter comes around we huddled up and Michael Smith shared some words with us and we hold up the number four. The fourth quarter, regardless whether we are up or whether we are down in the fourth quarter it is go time. Our main focus for the past two weeks now, the past two weeks we want to make sure that we play when the fourth quarter comes, that we play and execute just as well in the fourth quarter as we did in the first. These last few weeks of practice, because we have lost so many games in the fourth quarter obviously we have been up at half and we have lost five games in the second half. Much more of an emphasis on the second half and the fourth quarter during the game.”What did it mean to you to have your family here on the day that you broke the thousand yard mark for the season?”It means a lot. My dad is here, my godfather, my best friend since the sixth grade was here, another one of my friends is here, one of my old coaches was here, he was my very first coach ever, way back to when I was eight years old. He is not in this room but, he was my baseball coach at eight years old for the Expos back when they still had that team. It is a special thing, those people all in some way helped me get to this point, every single one of them. Whether it is advice or helping me out growing up as a kid, I want them to be a part of this success; when any success happens I want them to be a part of it and involved because without them I wouldn’t be standing up here talking to you all and without God also.”

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