Oct. 15, 2011
Northwestern vs. Iowa
Oct. 15, 2011 - Kinnick Stadium
Northwestern Head Coach Pat Fitzgerald
"You look at the game and we put ourselves in a hole. When we put ourselves in the
hole that we did it's hard to come back from that. Turned the ball over, 10-point
swing and the ball being thrown over our heads is a recipe for disaster."
"I thought there were some pretty bright things. I thought we were pretty darn good
on the third-down on offense and on defense we were much better than we were
a week ago. I thought for the most part we were able to stop the run but not to the
point where we need to in order to win a football game like this. A lot of things we are
going to look at hard as coaches. Are we putting our guys in the right position to make
plays? Are we giving them the best opportunity to be successful? Fundamentally are
we giving them all the tools to be successful? It will start and end there. We are going
to find a way to create a plan for our guys, come back home for homecoming next
week and find a way to get a win. In the heart of the storm you stay the course and
find a way to get some things fixed."
On having to primarily re-examine the defense...
On first time seeing Vandenberg since stepping in for Stanzi in 2009
"Well you get 500 yards, but it's not about yards. It's about points and the offense. I
think we stopped ourselves today with turnovers and obviously some self-inflicted
wounds. You got guys coming off the field saying I'm playing this concept and I'm
playing that concept, so those kind of breakdowns and communications when they
have happened, have been disastrous for us this year. So it starts with us as coaches.
What are we asking them to do? Why are they confused? Why are they on different
pages? It's not like Iowa did anything different than they typically do. I think they gave
us one little formation variation but we adjusted to it we thought. On the boundary,
we didn't do as good of a job as coaches, so that's our responsibility."
"I'm not sure if it's what we haven't seen. He is executing with in a framework of what
coach O'Keefe and Kirk are asking him to do. He doesn't try to force the ball. That is
the one thing that jumped out to me on tape. I very rarely, this year, have seen him
force the ball and really not take what the defense was giving him. It's a hallmark for
a young guy even though he doesn't have a million starts under his belt like Ricky
did. You can tell he has been in the system for a while and you see the poise. He has
obviously carried them pretty far, so far this year. He has won a lot of games because
of the way he throws the ball. Iowa has great talent on the perimeter. Marvin (McNutt)
is a really good player. I'm glad he is graduating this year. That's great. Marvin and
Keenan had a great game. They are great players."