Post Game Quotes

Oct. 26, 2013

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Head Coach Todd Monken
Overall statement...
"North Texas is a well-coached football team and Dan McCarney is a proven head coach. (The coaching staff) has been three years there. They are an older, veteran group that outplayed us and outcoached us tonight. We didn't do the things that I talked about early in the game. There were things that I talked about - the keys to victory beyond the five areas of turnovers, explosive plays, third downs, touchdowns in the red zone and lost yardage plays - and that was with a young quarterback of how can we start the game fast. How could we get (Mullens) off to a good start and get the homecoming crowd into it. And we had every opportunity to do it and we did not. We had drops, a missed field goal and had every opportunity to force their team to make critical calls. Then once we didn't do that we had a hard time in the first half getting off the field on third downs. That has been an issue for us. It has been brought up to me before, I get it. We have to find a way to get off the field and we have to find a way to score more. That's the bottom line. We came up with a number of turnovers. I really like our team's fight. I really like our team and there is going to be a day here that we are really good and it is going to come. This is too good a place, too good a history, we got too good a staff to not eventually be a really good football team. It hurts now. It hurts for our seniors and our older kids that continue to fight and we have five weeks left together. That is what we have to keep fighting and playing for each other. No one is coming to rescue us. That is who we have in our room and that's where we are at."

On the play of Nick Mullens...
"I think he is going to be a really good football player. I thought there were at times where he shows tremendous accuracy, poise, toughness and leadership - all the things you want in a quarterback. Did he play flawless? No, but we knew that. That is what you get with young players. I am proud of him, but there is a number of things that when you get outside the pocket you have to be able to be conscientious of defenders and he made a couple of really bad decisions when he was moving - which was a good thing. We want him to be able to continue to move outside the pocket and make plays down the field. He is only going to get better and we are only going to get better around him."

Dylan Reda
How tough is it being a senior...
"It's tough, but all I can do is set an example. That is what I do every time I step onto the field is to set an example for the younger kids and I want to leave a destiny that they are going to go on next year and I am going to come back and they will go to (the) conference (championship game) and they will win conference. That is where I am right now. I am going to go out every single play and play my hardest in leaving everything on the field because I love my teammates and I love my coaches and I just want the younger kids to look at me thinking that I am a leader (on this team) and show them what it takes to fight and to win."

On the trouble with third-down conversions on defense...
"We just have to get off the field on third down. There was nothing in the play calling, because (Coach) Duggan was calling everything right. We just need to have a sense of urgency and, us as the players, understand the urgency of a third-and-long situation and make something happen when we have the opportunity to."

Nick Mullens
On his performance...
"As a team we certainly did not get the job done. Personally, I have to be a better leader and go out there and make better decisions and better throws. It is a lot to build on. Every rep counts so I have to continue to get better."

On your first start...
"Your experience in high school, a big high school helps, but, dealing with the whole process, it is great. God bless the opportunity to go out and lead the team as a freshman but, at the end of the day, you still have to win. I am just working my hardest to do that."

On how the team is handling things...
"We have to put this past us real quick because we have another one right next week, so we are going to be determined to work hard. (The) freshmen are going to really bond together well and continue to work hard. We have five games left and Coach Monken told us that we had to make the best of it. So that is what we are going to do."

North Texas Head Coach Dan McCarney
On the quick start by the North Texas offense...
"It was a complete start. A lot of people did a lot of real good things. We were physical. We were trying to take away any hope away that they could win the football game early. Clearly, the turnovers were ridiculous. How about scoring 55 points and still turning it over four time? It is just inexcusable. Gotta get that fixed in a hurry. In five days, we play again on national television. We better get that fixed in a hurry. But overall, I thought the effort - led by our seniors - was really good."

On efficiency of offense...
"We had a lot of good positive things. A good football team learns how to complement each other. If you get a turnover on defense, take it and go score offensively. If you do a good job on special teams and get good field position, take that ball and go score. I think we are learning how to do that with this football team."

On different players stepping up...
"That's what we are looking for - depth, competition, more play makers. Don't just go out there and compete. Anyone can compete; go make plays. Go make plays to win. Go make difference making plays. We have more guys with that attitude and they understand that and we are seeing more guys doing that."

On forcing turnovers...
Five of them, I think we got tonight. Outstanding defense any time you can take it away. That's why we are one of the best in the country right now with the takeaways. We know this challenge is going to set up immensely. Rice is already bowl qualified. They got a huge win today. They have been going to bowl games. They have been winning. We haven't. I think it makes for a great matchup on Thursday night.

Mason Y'Barbo
On rushing performance...
"We knew going in that they were going to give us some looks and we stood a good chance running the ball. We started running it against Middle Tennessee. We've had a fire lit under us and we wanted to keep it going. Every game we challenge ourselves, week in and week out, to keep it going."

Marcus Trice
On forcing turnovers...
"It's something we do in practice. We have a turnover circuit in practice. If we mess up in practice, we can nullify those mess-ups by getting turnovers in practice ... We prepare with a tenacious effort. We prepare with an aggressive effort. I think it's all starting to show on the field. We're getting a lot of turnovers lately."

On North Texas responding to turnovers by its offense by forcing more turnovers...
"One of our core beliefs on defense is 'fearless;' fearless of any situation. If the offense turns it over, we don't care if it's on the two or on the opposing two, we don't care where the ball is. Our objective is to get the ball back and to stop the offense from scoring, no matter where it is."

Derek Thompson
On first-half offensive performance...
"We knew we could do some things well against them. We watched the East Carolina tape last week and they (East Carolina) go out and do the same things we try to do. We knew we had big chunk plays in the passing game. We just had to be on point with what they were doing to us. We were able to hit some big plays but when we turn the ball over four times, three in a row in the second half, it's tough for us to accomplish what we want to against better teams ... It's nice when we can march up and down the field and do what we want to do and be able to go with tempo. I think we ran 49 plays in the first half, which is awesome. You don't see a lot of teams do that."

Asked if this was his team's most complete performance of the season...
"First half, yes, absolutely. In the first half, we came out and did what we needed to do. It was a great crowd tonight. I was actually really surprised with what they brought out here tonight. Our job was to take them out of it early and I think we did a good job with that."

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