Kirk Ferentz press conference transcript

April 1, 2014 | 12:51 am

KIRK FERENTZ: Certainly not much fun for us out there today. I tell our team all the time, we get what we deserve, and that's what we got today. As did Central; they deserved the win. They played the full 60 and made the plays you have to make to come out victorious. Give them credit. We certainly give them credit and they played extremely hard.

Obviously on our side of the coin, we have got a lot of work to do right now, a lot of things to improve upon and we are going to have to do it fast because we have another game next week.

Q. Could you go over the last few plays?

FERENTZ: Yeah, that was a tough sequence obviously. We couldn't keep them out of the end zone, first of all. Made the stop on the two-point play, and then they did a good job on the on-side kick; we did a poor job on the flip side of it. Then critical series in there, we thought their guy was over the line on the one-pass play and they reviewed it and that was not true.

So tack on a personal foul on top of that, and it gave them pretty good field position. At least good enough for the guy to make a kick on the deal.

So you know, they got the job done there in that last minute of play the way you have to and we didn't, and some of those things are just kind of reflective of the whole game, especially the penalty thing. We did a terrible job on penalties today and I think we had nine total, seven of those were major penalties. So that's going to be -- tough to make that up.

Q. Specifically on on-side kick, what, if anything, did you see your team, prior to that play, and what ultimately happened?

FERENTZ: Typically, you have some guys that are assigned to go block the guys that are pursuing, and other guys are assigned to catch. And we just -- we looked very confused out there, and that's not a good thing. We were indecisive.

Q. The personal foul, I saw the last personal foul penalty, looked like Central Michigan guy initiated it, but that's always the second guy that sets caught.

FERENTZ: It is. It's kind of like that in any sport. At that point in the game, or any point in the game, it's really where you just have to keep your poise and let the referees officiate. I think every player has to realize if they get involved in a two-way, they run the risk of being caught. Sometimes both guys get caught and other times, just one.

In that situation, in particular, we just have to be a smarter team.

Q. Do you think game management was a problem today?

FERENTZ: At times it was. At times it was. We had some communication issues, certainly and then we ended up burning a timeout on the field goal. Our original thoughts, we use the 22 as our line of demarkation and we just felt like -- went down and asked Mike how he felt and he felt like he could do it. So you know, rather than have him rush, we burned the time out to give him a good shot at it.

Q. Is there any specific thing that upsets you the most about this game as far as like the series of things?

FERENTZ: The first thing I would start with are penalties, nine penalties, seven being major penalties. That's going to make it tough to overcome.

First half, we turned the ball over on our end of the field and gave them great field position and we also gave up a great play uncontested. Things like that, I think seven penalties in the first half; so you take the seven penalties, the turnover and give up a big play where we don't really challenge them at all, you know, that's tough to overcome that. It's tough to be a winning football team doing that. So I'd start right there. And then second half, we did some things better, but we didn't finish the game.

Q. How bittersweet is it to have this ending with the game that Mark had?

FERENTZ: You know, how you look at it, Mark had a good game, certainly. James threw for over 200. But the statistics really don't matter because it still wasn't good enough to get 34 points and that's what it took for us today to win.

Offensively, you can look at the numbers and say it was an okay day, but it wasn't because we didn't score enough points to win. And obviously defensively, it's the same way.

Q. You said before the UNI game that you had a great week of practice; was practice -- how did it go this week?

FERENTZ: I said on the radio just a moment ago, probably the biggest surprise for me today was that we had a good week in my mind. I went to bed last night feeling pretty good about the way we prepared, the way we practiced and where the guys focused and it seems like everybody was on task and doing a good job. Typically, when that happens, the team goes out and it reflects in the play but it didn't today.

Q. Maybe it was one of those things where that first touchdown came --

FERENTZ: Yeah, sometimes you go through that I guess. It was a beautiful first drive. That was a positive, certainly. You know, Mark's statistics were a positive. Keenan for a second straight week I think played better, and Kevonte, the same way. There are some positives in there, but we are not playing well enough to win right now.

Q. Would you use the word "undisciplined" to describe this performance?

FERENTZ: I think anything that has nine penalties, seven of them being majors, that word would probably fit right in there. So I would have to say so; undisciplined, sloppy, however you want to look at it.

Q. Any theories at all behind that?

FERENTZ: You know, I think it's uncharacteristic. I'm sure we've done it before. Just can't remember a game where we have had seven penalties that were, you know, major penalties. I'm sure it's happened before; I can't remember it. You know, and again, if we had had a really sloppy week of practice, I would say, okay, I could see that coming, but I don't see that.

Q. Were you surprised that you guys were confused on the on-side kick coverage when you got a look at what they were doing in that delay?

FERENTZ: Yeah, we typically -- we have not been in that situation an awful lot but we have coached it and usually execute it very well. I don't know how many we've been involved in, but we just looked like we were frozen out there, and they got the ball -- or at least it must have looked like that, if that's what you're asking.

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