NIU-Toledo Postgame Quotes

GO HUSKIES
GO HUSKIES

GO HUSKIES

Nov. 14, 2012

Recap |  Final Stats |  Notes

NORTHERN ILLINOIS FOOTBALL 2012
NIU vs. Toledo - Nov. 14, 2012
Huskie Stadium - DeKalb, Illinois
Postgame Quotes

NIU Head Coach Dave Doeren

On second-half adjustments...

They were packing it in quite a bit, so we thought we could get outside on the screen package that we run. Let the perimeter guys make some plays, and they did. We thought our tempo could get them tired, and it did. I think we had 340 yards in third quarter; that's pretty crazy, but we did. Defensively, we felt like we were getting them into third-and-mediums, because of our second down performance on defense. If we could get them into third-and-longs, which we did - I don't think they converted one third down in the second half. That's a big deal.

On preparing for the big game...

We had a lot of fun this week. We celebrated it today as a group. It was just fun in the locker room; I could see we were loose. I guess when you're winning every game, you're going to get somebody's best. And we did. We knew that Toledo was going to play hard, because that was for them to go to the championship game as well. We look forward to those big games.

On closing out games with the lead...

It's tough. It puts a lot of onus on the ball carrier, and the guys blocking for him to strain. When you get into a situation, and the last one - we knew we needed three or four first downs to end it. Coach Cole got on the headset with Jordan and said, `We're putting it on your back, big boy. Bring it home.' And he did.

On NIU's sustained success...

I think anytime you can share sustained success, that's the measure of a great program. When you go there, then you're absent for a while, then you go back - that's good, but to be a great program, you have to have sustained success. This program, for the last decade, is the winningest program in the conference. To be in this game coming up, three years in a row, says a lot. To have ten wins, now three years in a row - hoping to get to 11 obviously - That's what you want as a football program. To do it, at the same time with the academic success and the facilities, there are a lot of great things going on here right now.

 

 

On playing well on national television...

I told these guys, I want to show the world how great you are. At halftime we talked about it. It wasn't really any magic; it was more about information - giving those guys the information. And the players made plays. As coaches, that's your job. Put the players in position to make plays, and then it's their job to make them. And they did. They made a bunch of them.

Toledo Head Coach Matt Campbell

Opening Statement...

First and foremost, let me congratulate Northern Illinois, their kids, and their coaches. I thought they did a great job. They executed in some critical situations, and at the end of the day, those critical situations were the key to that football game.

I'm very proud of our football team. I'm proud of our senior leadership. I thought our kids never quit the football game. At the end of the day, it comes down to winning critical situations, and unfortunately, we came up on the short end of it.

On the double pass play...

We had Alonzo Russell open. We'll have to see what happened there. I thought he potentially got impeded a little bit on it. I don't know if we let go of the ball too quick. I'm just not quite sure exactly what it was; we'll have to look back. I thought it was a great call, and unfortunately, we just didn't execute it.

On the interceptions near the goal line...

I think that's huge. We did a great job of moving the football past the 50 [yard line], but at the end of the day, you can't turn the football over. Something we've done a great job of here offensively is take care of the football, but the last couple of weeks, that's seemed to really hurt our chances to be successful.

On the NIU's offense taking off in the third quarter...

I thought they did a great job schematically. They came out a lot more open in the second half, and I thought they made some really good adjustments in the second half. I don't know if we made the adjustments we needed to do to be successful as a coaching staff. Their biggest adjustment was opening it up, spreading it out, and getting it to their athletes in space. Unfortunately, we weren't able to make some plays in space, and they certainly were able to.

On the Martel Moore touchdown early in the second half...

I think it was a situation where we had three guys there. I think we'll have to look at it, but again, that's why you finish to the whistle and finish plays. That's a play where it's a heartbreaker because we had a guy there. We had him down, but he didn't quit. Unfortunately we didn't finish to the whistle, and that's probably the telltale sign of this football game.

On what he thought of Jordan Lynch...

He's a great player. I think the thing you know in this conference is that the best quarterback in this conference usually has the chance to win a MAC Championship. I think right now he's playing at an extremely high level. He's a young man that plays very consistent. As much as he runs the football -- his ability to run with such power yet throw the ball with great consistency and have the ability to sustain his success over the last 11 football games -- a lot of credit has to go to him. He's certainly a special football player. He's got a lot of things to look forward to.

On Jordan Lynch's passing in the second half...

I think his passes were more perimeter passes. It certainly wasn't the downfield throws, and not that he didn't make a couple critical ones, he did, but I think it was more of their staff's adjustment to get the ball on the perimeter in space to some of their speed guys. I really think that's what changed the pace of the game for them from an offensive standpoint. It certainly forced our hand in the second half.

On his pride in his team's resolve...

This is the thing that I know about our football team and our football program: we've made great strides, and our senior leadership has been unbelievable this season. We have played in some unbelievable environments. We've played in some tough football games. The one thing you can say about our Toledo Rockets is they never quit. That is a tribute to the 18 seniors that we have on our football team. We've still got two big football games left to play. We will not quit. We will be back. We'll be back because our senior leadership will bring us back.

NIU QB Jordan Lynch

On going to a third straight MAC Championship Game...

That was one of our goals when we sat down in the summertime. We started to put our goals back together and getting back to the MAC Championship. I thought, today, the seniors helped coming out in that third quarter. Martel (Moore) put the team on his back on that play. That really sparked us. We're excited to go back there and we can't wait. We have one more game. We're going to take it game-by-game. We're going to go up there and beat Eastern Michigan in Ypsilanti.

On wondering if the team would get to this point after the first game...

We set high expectations for ourselves. We feel like we can win every game. When we step out onto the field, we think we can win. We don't step on the field to lose. We step on the field to win. We fell short the first game, but we were a stronger team moving forward.

On the play of the defense...

First off, Toledo did a good job on us in the first half. Our defense held us in there. A lot of seniors - Sticks (Rashaan Melvin) making the pick - stepped up, just like I said. We fed off of their momentum.

NIU WR Martel Moore

On his 73-yard touchdown catch and run...

It wasn't about fun. It was about winning the game. The ball came to me, so I had to make a play. That's how I feel about it. If the ball's in my hands, I've got to make a play.

NIU CB Rashaan Melvin

On his interception...

It was a team effort. It is understanding the defense. I got beat on one play and I was ready to bounce back. The guy ran a post-corner and I was able to use my body, shield him off, make the play and make the catch for the team.

On beating Toledo three years in a row...

It means everything. It's a rivalry game. We take it one game at a time. The past couple of years, it's been a good game between both of us. We stay humble, stay focused and go out there and give it our all with a positive attitude - a mindset that we are going to win the game.

NIU DL Alan Baxter

On pride in the defense's performance...

We have a really old senior group and everyone rallies on our backs as seniors. We have a lot of leadership on our defense. Every day in practice, we strive to be the best and beat the best.