Football: Coach Stewart Quotes

  • By Kelly Tuckwiller
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  • November 01, 2010 03:31 PM
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Coach Stewart Quotes

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – WVU football coach Bill Stewart quotes from Monday’s press conference

Opening Statement
With some time this week we have been doing a total self-evaluation of the program on all phases, from me, to the assistants, to the players. We are looking at what we have done well, what we have done OK and what we have not done well.

I came up with a few things that were informative to me.

Last year, in the 2009 season, our offense had four 400+ yard games and we won nine football games. This year, our team has had five 400+ yard games and we have five wins.

We gave up 24 sacks in 2009 and we have given up 15 this season.

In 2009, we had 15 fumbles lost and this season we have 11 so far.

That doesn’t please me with the fumbles. The 400+ offense is encouraging though. When you lose a game, sometimes you lose sight of what is good.

Things I need to work on this week - first and foremost, on offense, we need to work on ball security. We are going to do a very intense turnover circuit and we are going to hit it hard this week.

Number two, we are going to work on formations and motions. A couple of guys were called because they were not on the line of scrimmage over the last couple of weeks. They were young guys, but we need to make sure they get it. I need to do a better job of coaching that.

Third, we need to work on pass protection. We have done well with the sacks, but how many hurries have we had? I want to move the pocket and see what we do best.

Defensively, we are fourth in total defense, fifth in scoring defense, sixth in pass defense, 10th in rush defense and 12th in sacks. That is pretty impressive.

No. 1, we worked very hard this week on getting turnovers. We have gotten some picks this season, but we haven’t stripped the ball.

I am not really pleased with open-field tackling. We have given up too many big plays on open field tackling.

There is no “I” in team. At the top of the line of that team, is the coach – that is me. I need to do a better job. I need to do a better job with the coaches. I met with the coaches this morning and, (offensive coordinator) Jeff Mullen and I grilled each other about every play and looked at every player. We looked at the plays and asked if the players could do certain plays.

We are going to call what we need to call to win football games, with the players that can do the best.

Defensively, I am going to meet with (defensive coordinator) Jeff Casteel and we are going to go over tape and do the same thing.

Let me assure you, I am not a finger pointer. I am not blaming these players. I have been a player and let me tell you about being one. If you are supposed to make a block – make it to the best of your ability. If you are supposed to hang onto the ball – do it to the best of your ability. If you are supposed to be somewhere in a formation – do the best you can.

If someone thinks that I have been pointing my fingers at these players – that is wrong. We start with Bill Stewart and the coaches.

On Geno Smith and the run game
He (Geno Smith) ran the ball very well and he slid one time close to a yardage stick. Get down and learn to fight another day. You don’t have to go in there and take that shot and get knocked out for the game. A couple of those runs were off quarterback draws and rushes, and he banged into people. I tell him to slide because I want him to slide.

On the run game and depth behind Noel Devine
Noel Devine and Ryan Clarke will play. I am going to put the ball into his (Clarke’s) hands and make him run through the gauntlet (turnover circuit drill). I am not blaming that loss on Ryan Clarke. No way was it his fault.

On the offensive line
I think that our offensive line has to block better. I think they have blocked hard and they have done a good job, but they have to do a better job. I am not saying that our offensive line has lost it for us.

On what to say to recruits
There are two ways to do that. First of all, you could say (to the parents) ‘That is why we need your son.’ I don’t think our guys will say that, because they are classy guys. But really what you say is that, ‘BIG EAST play is a black and blue league.’

On the offense
After you get so many films on someone, it gets tough, but we are who we are. We have not run the quarterback. I try to give you (the media) some information and not give away our game plan. By running Geno Smith the other night, that really opened things up for us. We had them confused, and we are going to try to run him some more.

On the leaders of the team
Noel Devine has worked very, very hard this season, has been vocal and a team player. He has led by example and I am very proud of him.

We have a great senior class and they have done a good job.

On handling criticism
I haven’t noticed it, so it must not bother me. I have pretty thick skin.

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