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Sep 7, 2013

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Virginia vs. Oregon
Sept. 7, 2013

Coach Mike London Quotes

On the game:
“Obviously very disappointing. We played an excellent football team. They got on us early and in every phase. We could not stop them defensively and we struggled with interceptions. The players in their system execute and do what they are asked to do. Going into our bye-week, we have a lot of things to address. I’m looking forward to moving in a positive direction.”

On offense:
“I think we need to find out what our identity is going to be. Whether or not our quarterback is going to run it more, or a personnel issue. Whatever it may be, we want to run the ball and find those guys that can move the chains for us.”

On preparing for Oregon:
“We knew that they are fast and athletic. We tried to practice the pace, but it is hard to practice for that type of athleticism that they have. It is always a challenge when you face an offense like that. We tried to do what we needed to do to prepare for that style. We tried to make sure to fit guys where they need to fit.”

On Quarterback David Watford:
“Obviously, we can’t turn the ball over. Quarterbacks can’t throw interceptions or put the ball down. We need to do better as far as turnovers are concerned. This week will be a great week for us to help him be a better football player. He is a try-hard type (player) and the timing is great to find out what we can do to help him improve. We will address turnovers going into this bi-week.”

On defense:
“We worked hard to defend the system that they have. Oregon has a great tight end and receiver. We had some issues being where we needed to be. My hat goes off to them. They are an excellent football team. We wanted to be aggressive, but that wasn’t good enough today.”

Virginia Player Quotes

Sophomore Quarterback David Watford

On offense stalling out on promising drives in second quarter:
“As an offense, we just have to keep pushing. We knew we were going to be in a dog fight and it wasn’t going to be easy and we just had to keep working. We didn’t dwell on those drives. We decided that every time we got the ball we’d try to score. That was our main focus, to keep pushing the ball down the field.”

On rebounding from the loss:
“It won’t be hard. Oregon is a great defense and a great team. They’re number two in the nation for a reason. That’s why we have to just learn from the film and learn from the mistakes and get ready for VMI.”

On starting off the season against strong defenses in BYU and Oregon:
“These are two of the toughest defenses in the nation, and we played them back-to-back. I’m just learning every week, and that’s all I can do. I need to continue to grow and continue to learn and keep pushing.”

On how the offense can improve in future games:
“We have to keep working. I made a lot of mistakes and that really hurt us. But, we moved the ball down the field when we wanted to against Oregon and against BYU. I just have to keep the turnovers to a minimum, point blank.”

Junior Linebacker Daquan Romero:

On the defense’s performance:
“Their speed was something that we’ve never really seen before, but that’s not really an excuse for us. There were a whole lot of missed assignments that we blew and alignments that we could have cheated. We didn’t capitalize on the opportunity.”

On the mood of the team after the game:
“I don’t feel a difference [from last week] right now. We let a lot of fans down, but as a team we have to bounce back. We can’t dwell on this moment. We still have a whole lot of games to play. We can’t get mad at ourselves and shoot ourselves in the knee for it.”

On playing a team ranked No. 2 in the nation:
“I would be lying if I said it was just another game. To play a team like Oregon, it’s a good experience for all of us. If it weren’t for the mistakes we made, we are a good enough football team to have stayed in that game.”

Junior Cornerback DreQuan Hoskey:

On Marcus Mariota’s 71-yard touchdown run on the opening drive:
“It hurt a lot, but we try to stay strong as long as we can as a defense.”

On preparing for Oregon versus what they saw on the field:
“Everything we practiced, they did. We tried our best, but they ended up with the big win.”

Junior Tight End Zach Swanson

On not getting anything going in first few possessions:
“Anytime we go three and out, or anytime we don’t get a sustained drive going and go get some points it’s frustrating. But we need to go out there and keep pounding.”

On the discussion at halftime:
“I felt like we had a decent amount of success offensively in the first half. Obviously we didn’t put the points up like we wanted to but the goal is always to fix the mistakes from the first half, and we were only down 18. It’s not like we were shutting down at halftime; we were really looking forward to coming out and fixing mistakes in the second half.”

On the mindset after Marcus Mariota’s 71-yard touchdown run:
“It’s always tough giving up big plays like that, and our defense takes pride in bouncing back and coming back from things. I think even after this game, we’ll be able to come back and be excited to get into ACC play.”

On Coach London’s message after the game
“He just said how it was a tough loss, and we’ll try to move on. We have a lot of big football left to play and I think we’ll rise to that occasion.”

Senior Defensive Lineman Brent Urban

On Oregon’s offense:
“They have a lot of great athletes and they run that quick pace. It’s really hard to get some of those guys down. They’re a really good team.”

On preparing for the game:
“It’s always tough with the hurry up to get calls in and things like that. We prepared for it the same way we did for BYU, and I think it worked for us last week, so we came in with the same approach, but they have athletes who were able to get around us for some really big runs.”

Junior Running Back Khalek Shepherd

On his long touchdown run:
“It was set to have an option, either a left or right toss and we looked and the primary play set up right where we wanted with less people on the left and more on the right, so I got the toss and Morgan Moses kicked them out and Billy Skrobacz kicked them in so it was just me and the corner. Once I made him miss I saw Darius Jennings coming across and I read his block and just ran into the end zone.”

On what the next week (bye week) will entail:
“It just starts with the little things, like coming in and watching film to see what we did wrong and just correcting it. All we can do is just keep working and working. We can’t worry about the mishaps and the mistakes. We just need to come in here every week with a positive mindset and trying to get better.“

Oregon Head Coach Mark Helfrich

On the penalties:
“Obviously, we need to clean it up and that’s 100 percent on me. I thought we played with an unbelievable effort level, great determination, great desire. A couple of those things the officials said that they probably would not have been called in some other situations, but from our standpoint we need to finish drives in our first half. Offensively, we stubbed our own toe with some silly penalties and then put our defense on a short field with a couple of weird plays.”

On Byron Marshall:
“Byron Marshall is a great tailback. It’s an 11-man job of running the football. We could have put him in the end to pad the stats, but he knows his team won today.”

On the 71-yard touchdown by Marcus Mariota:

“We knew they weren’t going to play us like they played BYU, and they didn’t. They played us completely different, and we anticipated some of that, and made some changes on the fly and our guys did a great job feeling that out. That is a great football team, maybe one of the tallest football teams I’ve seen. But we had to be on point in terms of communication, identifying what they were doing to try to stop us, and our guys did a good job with that.”

On being ranked No. 2:
“We play another great program next week. Our flight will feel short going back and we will start preparing for Tennessee tomorrow. The only thing it does when you win is give you the change to have one more. One and zero is good, two and zero is better.”

On De’Anthony Thomas:
“We do (plan on changing up his role every week). We want the ball in his hands. We were trying to make an effort from the first play to try to create some space, whether it’s a screen game, or as a receiver, or movement guy. He likes to be that guy, kind of a moving target. We need the ball in his hands and we talk all the time about ways to move him, line him up and get him the ball.”

On Thomas Tyner:
“A natural runner. I thought that zone cut on his longer touchdown was a natural cut. Either guys have that or they don’t. Gary Campbell is an incredible running back coach, but you can’t teach that feel, so that was amazing”

On yards per play versus points:
“Points. We just want to score. If you have, like Dior Mathis, a long interception return, you need the seven points. When you get turnovers you need to score touchdowns. What we care about is winning, and winning the right way.”

On mistakes:
“We want to be perfect, great, elite. The only way to do this is to get out of your comfort zone in that direction. We had too many dropped passes, too many penalties, too many mistakes, and that is going to happen. I am going to make a thousand mistakes, but I will make them in the best interest of our football program, university and players. But then I am going to fix them and same thing with them. If they make a mistake, they are going to fix it and move on. I am happy with how they finished.”

Oregon Player Quotes

Junior running back De’Anthony Thomas

Explaining why they are such a good team:
“Preparation and practice. We just work hard in practice and come out here and perform. We just are competing as one group, as the men of Oregon.”

On the Virginia defense:
“They had a great team. Physical and everyone is running to the ball. You know they were just a great team.”

On his body after a heavier workload:
“My body feels good and I just have to keep pushing and keep being a team leader and just contribute.”

On Mariota’s 71-yard touchdown run:
“I feel like we all feed off each other, and once one person does something we all just get pumped up and that’s just how our offense works.”

Sophomore left tackle Tyler Johnstone

On his comfort level during the game:

“We felt comfortable with where we had the game, all game pretty much. When we would come to the sideline after a three and out, we were just shooting ourselves in the foot. There wasn’t really anything we should be worried about except discipline. We played a really great game and I think our effort is outstanding. We’re coming off the ball hot. Every play we’re driving down the field, and we’re not giving up on plays.”

On Marcus Mariota’s 71 yard touchdown run:
“That was incredible. The thing about Marcus is that he has this speed that you don’t see in a player. His stride is so long it doesn’t look like he’s going fast, it just looks like everyone else is moving slowly. That kind of revamped our attitude a bit.”

Sophomore Quarterback Marcus Mariota

On his 71-yard touchdown run:
“The offensive line did a good job, kind of cleaning it up for me. It was one of those deals where they all kind of ran with their guy and I just hit it up the middle. Those guys did a good job blocking and the receivers did an awesome job blocking down the field, and I just had to finish.”

On their offensive game overall:
“I thought we did all right. There were some times where we kind of slowed ourselves down with penalties and bad throws. If everything starts to click for us, like those first three or four drives, things will get rolling and I think we’re pretty good. There are some times where we have self inflicted wounds and we’re going to go back, learn from it, and be better next week.”

How Oregon dominated a good team like Virginia:
“I think we just came out and executed. Coach Helfrich and myself included, I felt those guys they have up front, those four guys are pretty good, flying around and making plays. For our offense, especially our offensive line, to have the game that we did, it’s a huge confidence boost heading into next week.”

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