Postgame Quotes: Utah and West Virginia | Heart of Dallas

Postgame Quotes: Utah and West Virginia

Utah head coach Kyle Whittingham

(Opening statement):

“Proud of our football team. We worked hard all bowl prep, practices, meetings, lifting, conditioning, the whole deal. It paid dividends today. I’m very happy for the seniors going out on another positive. They really were freshmen when we were coming off those two 5-7 seasons and they really helped get us traction in this league, in the Pac 12, played a lot of good football for us and did a lot of good things for us.”


(On the defense):

“Outstanding. It was 150 yards, 160 yards they gave up and 20 something rushing, six first downs. Probably half that total was on the last drive or second to last drive. I’m proud of how they played. Came up with three takeaways on defense. I thought they really controlled the game from start to finish, particularly on the front. I’m proud of those senior defensive linemen. We won the line of scrimmage and that was very evident, both sides of the ball.”


(On being 11-1 in bowl games at Utah):

“We’ve got a group of guys and have had several groups of guys come through here that take a lot of pride in their bowl performance and the bowl record we have at the University of Utah. This group was no different. Each subsequent group doesn’t want to be the group that lets the previous groups down. They want to keep that bowl prowess alive.”


(On Julian Blackmon):

“I think Julian will be, I think he is one of the best corners in the country. He’s a true sophomore and he has some incredible skills and a skillset that you look for at that cornerback spot.”


(What’s different about your bowl preparation):

“I don’t think anything in particular. I’d like to say even days of the month we practice twice or whatever, but there is no uniqueness to it other than hard work. You hear of other places get in a bowl and go out four or five times in shorts and a helmet and run around for 45 minutes and that’s not how we approach it. We approach it like a regular-season game, we go full pads a great deal of time during the prep. We run conditioning. I think it’s more of how the players approach it and the effort they put into it. I don’t think it’s any kind of magical sequence of practices or structure.”


(On the game):

"We just did the same thing we have done all season: we played the tough defense, and this senior class did such a great job. This was a very resilient group. They fought hard and came to play every week in spite of some close losses early. This is a tribute to the dedication of these players and the coaching staff."


Utah sophomore RB Zack Moss

(On starting with big plays):

“It was very important for us to come out of the gates with a big play early on and set the tone for the game.”


Utah sophomore QB Tyler Huntley

(On running the ball):

“It was a few option reads with me and Zack back there working. The defense gave us a couple of looks where he got the ball and I got the ball and we just worked from there.”


(On the win):

“It’s always a great feeling to get a bowl win. We’re starting the year off right working on next year. We’re going to be ready for next year.”


Utah sophomore CB Julian Blackmon

(On WV missing key players, did that change game plan):

“It didn’t change anything at all. Our coach told us we’re going to prepare and prepare the right way no matter who steps on the field. That’s one thing we take into every game: play. We’re here to play and dominate and I feel like that’s what we did this game.”


(On being proud of defense):

“I’m very proud, especially with our front because it all starts right there. Without them getting their hands up and that cover three I was in, I don’t get my pick. Without them getting to the quarterback, I don’t get my second pick. It’s all a team game and I’m happy we played the way we did today.”


(On his experience at Utah):

“It’s been amazing, especially coming from Utah. I keep my head down and keep on working because I know one day the Lord is going to bless me the right way, and he has. I’m excited of this feeling. I want to thank our coaches for this great program. We came here with the attitude that we don't lose bowl games and played hard. I kept my composure despite West Virginia the ball so much, and the whole defense played great. This means everything - especially to our senior class - just to get to a bowl game and to win again is great for our program."


West Virginia head coach Dana Holgorsen:

(Opening statement):

"It was a pretty disappointing loss to end a pretty disappointing season. I just talked to the guys downstairs and we publicly wanted to thank the 18 seniors that made the trip as they have done a lot for our program. It upsets me to not send them out with a victory and we thank them for everything they have done for the program. A couple of those guys stepped up and said remember how this feels right now because in 2018 we want it to be a successful season. We understand we have a lot of work to do. We are looking forward to getting back to work."


(On the team’s injuries and the affect on the game):

"You never hear me use it as an excuse. If you lose guys, you need guys to step in and play at a high level and that is the bottom line. We struggled left and right when losing guys on the offensive line. We needed guys to play better and they didn’t. When you lose your quarterback you need somebody to step in and play great, and he didn’t. That is what has to happen, you have to have guys come in and play at a high level.”


(On the play of special teams):

"Special teams is my responsibility and we make two critical errors and that is on me."