Kirk Ferentz Postgame Quotes

January 1, 2014

OUTBACK BOWL HEAD COACHES NEWS CONFERENCE

Wednesday, January 1, 2014


IOWA COACH KIRK FERENTZ

Opening statement:

"I have to start out by saying this was just a fantasticexperience for our entire football team. Being in a bowl is special, certainly comingto Tampa, this committee does a wonderful job of hosting teams and providing agreat experience and the Outback company is a big, big part of that. They'vesupported this thing for 19 years now and six more coming so it just showsthrough top to bottom what a great experience it is and we're very appreciativeof the opportunity to be here. Congratulations to LSU. Certainly they made alot of big plays today and did the things they had to do to get the victory. Itwas a hard fought game out there and I'm just very, very proud of our footballteam. They handled this month well, they've certainly done a good job since wecame down here and they competed today. We came up short, credit to them, butI'm very proud of our players, our team and our coaching staff."

On LSU utilizing the run and Iowa's defensive performance:

"There was no surprise by that. They've run the ball andthrown the ball really well this year. It's kind of not ironic but interesting,I guess, they took that first possession and pretty much drove it at ease andthen the last possession as well if you're not including taking the knee.Outside of those two possessions, but they all count certainly. The fact thatour guys were out on the field probably too much affected us in that last onemaybe a little bit, but they've got a good football team as you know. I thoughtour defense competed extremely hard."

On quarterback Jake Rudock:

"He got hurt. He had a knee injury and reinjured that knee.At that point, he's going to be fine, much like the last game. This monthhelped him certainly. I think having an out of season will really get himhealthy. Nothing to be alarmed about and C.J. (Beathard) jumped in there anddid a great job."

On the offense struggles moving the ball:

"I don't think it was anything magical; they played us alittle bit differently than maybe we had seen, and that's a credit to them. Weadjusted a little bit. But they're a tough defensive ball club. They've got alot of good players, they've played pretty well traditionally and theycertainly did this year. They just made it tough for us to move the ballconsistently. I thought we did a little bit better job in the second half butto me it was a good defensive game. Overall, both teams were playing toughdefense and sometimes that's what happens when good teams get together."

On a play that was held up because LSU was not allowed to substitute:

"Yeah, I think there was confusion on that. Typically if youdon't sub, they don't hold up the play up. They must have thought we subbed, Iguess, because they allowed them to do whatever they did. It's part of thegame. That was not the deciding factor, but it happens."

On John Lowdermilk's interception return for a touchdown later reviewedand placed at the one yard line:

"It was a great play, first of all. When you get in a gamelike that, a defensive ball game, you're looking for a spark anywhere, it wouldbe him. Jordan Cotton certainly gave us a spark on the kick return. We werehoping obviously it was a touchdown. It didn't work out that way, but that'spart of the deal too. That's a good play by Johnny."

On LSU running back Jeremy Hill compared to Big Ten backs:

"He's a very good back, obviously. The first guy that comesto mind for me is the running back at Ohio State. He's awfully good too.They're both excellent; I don't want to pick one over the other. But if youwere picking one, you'd be happy to have either one, I can tell you that."

On LSU's power running game:

"That's who they are. When they run the ball they're not afinesse team at all. They've got several different schemes that they utilize.They run them well. They're a well-conceived offense. They execute well andthey have good players. Obviously they had a new quarterback out there but wehad a lot of respect for him, certainly. He played a good game."

On the legacy of the three Iowa senior linebackers:

"We've had a lot of good players through the last 15 years,longer than that certainly. These three guys have just done an outstanding job.They're all very different stories, although they all played as true freshmen.All different stories, but they've all just had tremendous careers and allthree of those guys to me are a big part of us being here today. Certainlythose three guys are at the head of the class."

On how his team responded in the second half:

"That's who they are. I don't say it in an arrogant way. Wewanted to win today, there's no question about that. I'll tell you, we're alldisappointed. But the bottom line is they deserved to win. They made the playsyou have to make to get it done, credit to them on that. To be around thisfootball team, to coach them, to go to the practice field every day with thoseguys, weight room, wherever they've been, it's been a really great group ofguys to work with. The guys have played hard, competed hard each and everystep. That's where it all starts. Everything you do in life starts with thatand working hard. We came up short today, but I'm extremely proud of theseguys. It's been a lot of fun to be around them on a daily basis. It's been agreat 13 months."