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Oct. 5, 2013

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Virginia Head Coach Mike London quotes

On losing momentum after Ball State’s 72 yard touchdown play:
“Yeah, (it was) disappointing. It was an explosive play; it led to points. But if that does happen you have to turn around, you have to be resilient. You’ve got to bounce back from that and we didn’t do a very good job of bouncing back today. Even with the sudden changes trying to stop them, they ran their offense. Give all the credit to the quarterback. He runs their system in a very efficient manner, and they outplayed us in every aspect and they deserved to win.”

On the issue of penalties:
“A lack of poise. I can count probably three or four of them that extended the drive, third down penalties that extended the drive and that’s something that hurts you. I don’t know how many led to scores. I’ll look at that and we’ll critique that more, but you’ve got to have poise in those situations. We just didn’t play very smart today. We’ll look at who the offenders are, and obviously that matters. If you’re offsides it hurts the team. So, we’ll look at that and address those individuals, but we’ll address again how detrimental it is to any type of success you could have, particularly defensively when you extend those drives, or as you saw two penalties on touchdown plays. Those things are egregious and you can’t put up with that. We’ve got to go back and teach the aspects of ‘Listen, when this happens you put yourself, your teammates in bad situations.’ Obviously two of them cost us points for sure.”

On quarterback David Watford’s performance:
“Again, he has to be accountable, responsible for the throws that he makes. We’ve got to be accountable and responsible for the routes that we run. The whole passing game, guys have to be in tune with what’s going on. It looked like out there today that guys weren’t in tune as we need to be because of the turnovers and the missed opportunities to convert third downs and move the chains.”

On changes in the game with receivers:
“We’ll see. We’ll look at it and grade the film. There’s a lot of things you look at, not just the catches, but the alignments, blocking, all those things, that they are running the right routes. That evaluation will be made after the coaches have a chance to watch the tape. I know Keeon Johnson made a couple catches, some athletic catches, so there’s a bright spot there. Overall, we didn’t play well enough to win, to allow the team to have some success and we have to go back and make sure we are doing everything we can to help this team succeed.”

On Ian Frye and Alec Vozenilek:
“Ian obviously didn’t play this game because of the hip flexor that he sustained in our last game. So we’ll see what happens with him as the week goes on. I thought Alec did an excellent job today handling both duties, the field goals and punting. He will continue to keep doing that as long as he’s healthy and we’ll see where Ian is as the week progresses, but again I don’t look for him to be back anytime soon because when you have that type of injury when you’re a kicker it may take some time. Again, I said Alec did a great job today and scored some points for us, moved the field with his leg for his punting.”

On his coaching after two losses:
“My goal is to make sure that we do everything we need to do and that’s what I’m committed to doing. I go to work everyday with that mindset. The coaches we have here go in with that mindset. The players come to play. When they don’t play as well as we need to, this is the result of it. They’re not quitting in that locker room in there. They want to come back again tomorrow to get ready for seven games left in the season. So, we’re 2-3. That’s where we are right now with a chance to get better. That’s all my focus and goal is to do.”

Virginia Player Quotes

Senior Offensive Lineman Luke Bowanko

On the performance of the newcomers on the offensive line:
“It’s hard for me to say at this point, but they had the right attitude on the sidelines and weren’t making too many mistakes. Coach Wachenheim mentioned that Eric [Smith] was having a good game, but the film will tell more than anything. Either way, I’m proud of them for going out there and fighting until the end.”

Junior Running Back Kevin Parks

On the game overall:
“It’s frustrating, but we have to keep grinding. We need to come in tomorrow and work like we’ve never worked before. Things like this happen in life, but it’s about how you react to it.”

On his controversial fumble that was confirmed by the replay booth:
“I’ve just got to take care of the ball. The guy made a great strip but I’ve got to hang on to it. It was a big play in the game, and I need to hold on to the ball. In my opinion, I thought I was down [by contact]. ”

On team’s impressive day running the ball:
“Our game plan was to run the football, and that’s what we did. We imposed our will with the run, and when we’re down we have to be able to make the throws, too. We just didn’t get it done overall, and we didn’t get the W.”

Senior Defensive Lineman Brent Urban

On Ball State’s passing attack:
“They get the ball out quickly. As a defensive line, we try to get our hands up and things like that. It’s just tough to play against with those continual short passes. We’ve got to try our best to get there, and we obviously didn’t.”

On the mood in the locker room after the loss:
“It’s a big loss. We were hoping to go above .500 for the year. We are just trying to stick together as a team. Nothing matters outside of this. We need to just keep getting better. We can only go up from here.”

Sophomore Quarterback David Watford

On the game:
“There were a lot of things that didn’t go our way. With the penalties and turnovers and mental mistakes, we were shooting ourselves in the foot. We had two touchdowns called back because of penalties. The defense gave up first downs because of penalties. It was just a tough day for us. We have to just keep working to correct these mistakes.”

On mood of team before the game:
“I think we were good. We were focused and ready. There were a lot of young guys playing, and we were all excited. We were ready to go out and fight. Things did not go our way and I feel like the mood changed as things went along. As a team we have to hold each other up, no matter what is happening on the sideline. We need to be more vocal and supportive. There were a lot of guys sitting on the bench. I sat down a few times when I should have been up and been into the game.”

On the deflating effect of Kevin Parks’ fumble:
“Parks is a great player and we knew he was going to bounce back from that. We did not try to let it affect us on offense. I thought he was down; Kevin thought he was down. They came out and said he fumbled. He got it back though, so that’s all that matters.”

Junior Tight End Jake McGee

On team mood during the game:
“The offense was confident. We started off really well early, but went into a lull and couldn’t quite get out of it.”

On demoralizing effect of the loss:
“It hurts, but you can’t let it end the season. We still have seven games at least. If you let this spiral out of control, it just gets worse. As leaders on the team, you have to keep the guys together. If we can do that, we will be ok.

On how seriously the team took Ball State:
“We are in no position to look past anyone. We haven’t earned that yet. We can’t think that we are better than anyone. They showed us today. We looked at them like a top team and they played like one today.”

Junior Running Back Khalek Shepherd

On feeling of the team:
“It’s a long season. You have your ups and downs. All we can do right now is bounce back and get ready for Sunday and prepare for next week. We can’t linger on this unfortunate loss, so all we can do is put this behind us and get back to work tomorrow.”

On tone in the locker room after the game:
“Coach London is always there for us. He will never give up on us and we will never give up on him. We had to keep it positive between everybody so that we could actually turn this thing around. The last thing we need is negativity, so we just have to keep as a family and keep working.”

On frustration about lack of inconsistency:
“Everybody wants to be successful. I’m just glad and happy that I’m playing football with these brothers I’ve had for the past four years. We are going to keep pushing every week and keep playing this game that we love to play.”

Ball State Head Coach Pete Lembo Quotes

Opening remarks:
“I am usually not speechless, but I am pretty darn close. It is going to take a while for this one to really sink in, but this has got to be the biggest win in the history of Ball State football in nine years. We have had three BCS wins the last two years, but nothing compares to this; coming on the road to Virginia, beating an ACC opponent, a team with the caliber athletes that they have, and the fact that we are very much depleted. You know I never make excuses about injuries, but we went into this game shorthanded and lost some other guys as the game went on. Some guys fought to get back in there, but this was a really gutsy effort by our guys and a relatively mistake free game. No turnovers, we didn’t have very many penalties and I believe they did.”

“We just felt like all week, if we had a good week of preparations, if we worried about ourselves, and if we came in and just chipped away, we really felt like our unity and our chemistry would pay off down the stretch. I really believe that is what happened out there today. As the adversity grew in this game, our guys came closer and closer together and just kept doing what we have been preparing them to do for almost three years now. You could just feel it as the game went on that we were getting stronger, despite being low in numbers. We didn’t play many people today. We didn’t have many people to play and I don’t know that we could have put many others in the game. We burned a redshirt on Stu Stanley today because we ran out of guys on special teams. This is big because we fought through a lot to get this one.”

On focusing on themselves:
“We talked a little bit more about Virginia this week so that our guys knew what they were going into. I wanted to make sure we were coming in confident, so we did talk a little more about Virginia. At the end of the day it comes down to playing relatively mistake free football, which we did today. And we made some big plays.”

On injuries:
“Jeff [Garrett] came back from a pretty big shoulder bruise so I was proud of how he fought back in there. We were a little bit like a M.A.S.H. unit. [Ben] Ingle didn’t play, so we were down at linebacker. [Christopher] Calloway didn’t make the trip, [Martez] Hester and [Chris] Shillings are still out. If you would have told me back in August that we would have had seven or eight guys out who have played a lot of football for us and we would come in here and beat these guys buy three scores, I don’t know that I would have had an answer for you.”

On UVa penalties:
“Well it negated some plays for them, potentially big plays, and it aided us on some drives. That gets back to a lifestyle. We have very disciplined kids that have really started to live it 24/7. You think about how well they are doing academically and how well they are handling themselves socially on our campus and those are the things that turn into performances like this. There is no question that we were incredibly disciplined today because it got chippy down there, too. The longer we hung in there and kept the thing close, and then got the lead, we got them out of their comfort zone and that’s when some of the pushing and shoving started. The fact that our guys held their poise really benefited us.”

On the sneak play:
“It was inches and we felt like we needed to continue to be aggressive and we had been moving the ball pretty well on the ground. It was a lose-lose call because if we had missed the field goal, we should have went for it, and we go for it and we don’t get it. But, our defense was hanging in there. We all felt good about the decision. I mean we are on the road, playing an ACC team, so we wanted to keep the foot on the gas.”

On a big program win:
“I am proud of these kids. I am proud of these assistant coaches. We are not the biggest program in America but the hearts are big, the effort is tremendous, and the belief in each other and everybody in that locker room is as good as any team I have been around. We are going to keep scratching and clawing and we will enjoy this for 24 hours and then it is off to Kent State.”

Ball State Player Quotes

Junior Running Back Jahwan Edwards

On getting stronger throughout the game:
“It’s the play calling and the position that we were put it. Their defensive alignment and the plays we were running against their alignment, I was able to make people miss and went hard.”

On his three TDs since returning from injury:
“I’m glad to be playing, two weeks out did a lot for me, watching my team play and helping those guys out. We knew the more disciplined, detailed team was going to win and that’s what we did.”

On playing big program games:
“When it comes down to it, this is football, not the crowd, not what else is going on. And our coaches, we have a great coaching staff. I would put them up against anybody. And it comes down to playing with detail.”

Sophomore Wide Receiver Jordan Williams

On his increased playing time:
“I am always ready to step up and whenever I get the opportunity I want to take advantage of it, and that’s what I did today and have been doing.”

On playing big program games:
“We are a team, a close knit team. We had a goal of coming out and having a big year. Everybody is playing for each other, and that’s helping us to be able to succeed.”

Senior Quarterback Keith Wenning

On the key to the offensive success:
“The strength of their defense is the defensive line and I think our offensive line played their butts off. I am so proud of those guys. They gave me enough time to pick them apart a little bit and we created some big plays with the running and passing game. I think the game ball should have gone to those guys, because they played their butts off up front.”

On being told before the game they would score 48 points:
“I wouldn’t have been surprised. I’m confident in our offense and our team. We watched them on film and credit Coach Skrosky; he called a heck of a game. We were licking our chops early on, and we knew we would get some big plays.”

On having the most Ball State passing yards in history:
“I didn’t even know. It feels good.”

On playing big program games:
“We have a lot of guys that have played a lot of football and we have great coaches. We couldn’t ask for any better ones. One thing we emphasize is that there are 11 guys on their defense and 11 guys on their offense. They put their cleats and pants on the same way we do. We are not playing superstars and we are not playing Superman. We are playing 11 guys just like us. And when we go out there on the field, we are going to do what we do and do it with confidence.”

Senior Cornerback Jeffery Garrett

On causing turnovers:
“It’s about us coming out and making a difference. We had to face adversity and we came out got turnovers and did what we had to do.”

On overcoming injuries:
“We are confident with the backups and the coaches got us ready. We talked as a defensive unit and knew that everyone that came on the trip was expecting to play. We knew guys would step up and have opportunities today.”

On playing big program games:
“Two years ago before playing Oklahoma I gave an interview and I said that we put on the same pads, same cleats and practice just like them. This was a big game, but we treated it the same.”

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