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Sept. 14, 2013

Recap |  Final Stats |  Notes |  Photo Gallery 

TULSA HEAD COACH Bill Blankenship

On Tulsa's third-down defense
"I haven't seen it, but I know we gave up several opportunities on third down in the first half and I'm sure it kept on because I don't remember them punting until late. We couldn't get off the field. I think Oklahoma exposed our youthfulness in the secondary and took advantage of that. They actually handled it really well. I think Blake Bell did a good job getting the ball to the underneath receivers and then hit us over the top as well.

"I think any defense and offense understands that winning third downs is big. It is incredibly frustrating to not only give up third downs, but to give up touchdowns on those third down conversions, no question."

On defensive strategy
"We came into the game wanting to crowd the line of scrimmage. We knew they would want to run the football and we felt like that was the best opportunity we had, is to try and load the box up to take away the run and force them into throwing the ball, hopefully when they didn't want to. But we didn't get enough pressure and then we had a couple of busts early that had a couple of guys running free and you just can't overcome that."

On whether or not OU's strategy caught them by surprise
"I can't speak specifically for the defense; I don't think so. I don't look at their offense as much as (Defensive Coordinator Brent Guy) does. I didn't see them do anything unique to what we had seen. Defensively, I know they played pretty much what we expected them to play."

On whether or not Blake Bell's passing caught them by surprise
"No. We have some coaches that actually recruited him out of high school when he was a very productive passer. I think he had gotten put into a little bit of a niche of a guy that didn't throw. I think compared to Landry (Jones) he is not as good, but he had a good day today."

On Trey Watts
"I think Trey Watts could play anywhere in the country. He is one of the finest competitors I have ever been around. I was proud he had the kind of day he did. He would have liked to have been out there at the end of the game if I would have let him. The guy wants to compete every play. He is one of the special ones out there. He could play anywhere in the country."

On settling for field goals
"I think those were opportunities we let slip away. We certainly wanted to get points, but we need to get into the scoring territory with a touch­down, those were huge. We got down deep a couple of times and I thought we gave ourselves some opportunities; we didn't cash in on all of them."

On this game compared to others
"Offensively we moved the ball better. We were more consistent on offense. We still had a critical turnover that hurt us; we dropped a pass that might have been another big play. We just have real high standards. I think we are an improving football team but we got exposed on defense today. We are very young and it is what it is, but they didn't let us hide behind that today."

On Cody Green
"We went into this game believing that the key was going to be to run the football effectively and to take care of the controlled passing game. We did not want to get into a spread-it-out-and-throw-it-everytime kind of game; that in my opinion is what their defense is built to defend. There is speed all over the place. We really wanted to get into a little more of an old-fashion game, blocking and running."

On playing with a high number of freshmen
"They don't give you extra points because you are playing young guys. You have to bring the guys you have and play. Call it crazy, but we believe we can come in and compete and we didn't at the level we thought we would, that is what I'm disappointed in. Not that we kept it close, that is not what we are about."


On game today
"It's always fun playing football. It's the game I love and I love playing with my teammates and being out with my guys, but our goal is to win the game. If you don't win the game, it's a buzzkill; especially when we feel we had chances and we got in the red zone and couldn't put the ball in the endzone. We have to give credit to their defense for keeping us out of the endzone."

On father's (J.C. Watts) legacy and obligation to play well at Oklahoma
"I've been thinking about this game since I stepped on campus. I've wanted it for a long time, but we just couldn't get it done today."

On mood of sideline after being stopped inside the ten
"We do a pretty good job of keeping our heads up. We have a bunch of veterans on our offense that know we just gotta keep plugging, keep pushing. We never hang our heads. We just try to clear it and move on to the next play."

On getting a bye week
"Two losses early, it's a chance to regroup and get fresh and prepare for next week. You take a bye week any week you can get it. People get banged up every week in college football, so you just have to take it when you can get it."


On frustrations about game
"We have to get out of the field during third downs. That was the most frustrating thing today. We'll look at film and correct that. That was the major thing. For the most part, we had a pretty good day."

On Oklahoma quarterback Blake Bell
"He's a terrific player. He threw the ball extremely well. We didn't expect him to throw as much as he did today, but he threw the ball good. I have to give him credit. We were surprised he threw the ball as much, but we knew he could throw."


On scoring 20 points and how Tulsa competed
"We're a team. At the end of the day, we want to put points up on the board and do everything we can. We missed opportunities in the red zone a few times. You got to give credit to our quarterback. Cody (Green) threw very good balls, he was on the money most of the time. We just have to meet him halfway. I feel like there was good things you can take out of this, but at the same time you never want to lose a game like that. We've got to take advantage of the opportunities that we missed, go back and watch film and get ready for Iowa State."