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Notes on Mike Gundy’s TCU Press Conference



Coach came out on Monday with some high praise for Trevone Boykin. Then he talked Tech, Emmanuel Ogbah, Raymond Taylor and spoke extensively about the 2-QB system.

Coach opened up with, “I don’t know that we need to necessarily talk about TCU and what type of football team they have, their explosive players, so we’ll have our work cut out for us this week.”

What do you do with TCU and Boykin?

• Asked if defensively, they’d approach with more nickel or dime defense: “I would say nickel quite a bit – maybe some dime. Boykin has played in this system for give or take 20 games and if there was an answer scheme-wise, X’s and O’s, I’m guessing somebody would’ve come up with that solution by now.”

• “He’s going to make plays. If there’s a more dynamic player in college football, I haven’t seen it. I’m sure the running back at LSU’s a great player, I haven’t seen as many plays with him.” You know…the running-back, No. 7.

• “I want to be able to give him credit and give them credit for what he’s done, but I also want to make sure everybody knows our defense is going to come out and play hard, we’ll use our team speed and I’ll be surprised if our guys don’t play well.”

• On Gary Patterson – first, a little shot: “He spends most of his time on the field, outside the white. I’ve enjoyed watching that again this year.” Then “He’s one of the best defensive minds in the college football, in my opinion.”

On Texas Tech

• Offensively: “I thought our coaches had a terrific scheme. You would hope you wouldn’t have to score that many to win a game, but in this league, with the quarterback play we’re getting, it’s very similar to 4-5 years ago.”

• Defensively: “I thought we came out flat because we didn’t tackle very well. But, I also think 11’s a good player (Jakeem Grant – this guy). The quarterback now is throwing the ball well and he’s running the ball. The answer would have been to tackle better. We had six of them miss him on one play.”

• Robert Allen asked Coach about in-team awards for “hustle plays”: “Chad (Whitener, a.k.a 45), I think he missed him (Grant) one time didn’t he, or twice? Then he tackled him 90 yards downfield. Really good hustle.”

How about Raymond Taylor’s fumble recovery? “That made the highlight tape for two reasons. 1) So JW would take care of the ball better. And 2) Taylor was in the right place and he used great technique in covering the ball, just like a champ.”

On to the Offense and the 2 QB System

• “Raymond’s playing really well with the number of carries he’s got. He’s bounced off tackles. He’s a guy, in my opinion, that needs more carries.”

• This was very Gundy: “If you watch the game, and you got the clicker in your hand, you can run it back, there’s a number of plays and rushing yards that have been accomplished in this league and the blocking’s not very good.”

• Coach was asked how he would evaluate the offense as a whole this season: “Farther along. Not as good in the running game as I would’ve hoped we’d have gotten at some point. Better in the throwing game than I thought we’d be preseason.” Seems about right.

• Someone mentioned that going back to high school, Mason Rudolph is 25-1 as a starting quarterback (!!!): “Some players have a higher football IQ than others. His football IQ seems very high.” Then, in a nutshell, Coach went on to explain how in today’s game, with so much media coverage, the key to attempting a two-QB system is having mature, unselfish players.

• Has Mason’s demeanor and body language indicated any dissatisfaction with the system? “I haven’t gotten that from him. Where did you get that? From who? He’s been really good with us. I haven’t seen any issues.”

• About JW: “He’s been a good player for us. He’s had an unfortunate run of injuries that have affected his career. (His role) has just kind of grown as the season goes on based on his success.”

ª “I guess I don’t want to mislead anybody. I’m sure Mason would like to play every play. I’m sure J-Dub would like to play every play. But, it hasn’t created an issue with the team or with them at this particular point.” Good to hear!

• “We haven’t gone into a game yet knowing how much JW would play, or when.”

• Coach was asked if we just forgot how good a quarterback JW was, which led to this all-timer: “I’m not saying he’s the next Bart Starr (I’ll stop, let you Google “Bart Starr”…) I’m just saying he brings some charisma, some toughness, some leadership and has been successful during his career in high school and college, offensively.”

• Then THIS – cue the Breaking News music – due to his injuries, would JW be a candidate for a medical 6th year? “He would be a very good candidate for that, yes, due to his injuries.” Wait – what?!

Defense and Emmanuel Ogbah

• How are Lampkin and Peterson? “I think we’ll have bother players.”

• How did Hunter and Richards do filling in? “Hunter played pretty well and I thought Richards played good. It’s a big advantage when you have four of them.”

• This was interesting – has your definition of a good defensive performance changed? “I don’t believe in the defensive statistics that are out here today – for two years I’ve said that. Defensive statistics need to be based on percentage of possessions defended and points based on the possessions you defend in a game. I think we defended 17 possessions in the game Saturday. Georgia Tech may defend 9-11 a game. Your numbers are going to get blown up because of the style of play in this league.”

• How important is Ogbah as a leader? “He hasn’t changed at all. Very seldom talks, he leads by example, pushes hard in the weight room, he practices extremely hard. He’s a great asset to our program.”

Random Closing Notes

• Coach’s phone went off and (I think) Haisten said, “Knock it off Siri.” Gundy: “I don’t even have Siri. That’s voice control. I don’t even know what that it. That’s Gary – it’s Patterson!”

• Will Seales be back? “Yes – we suspended him last week. He made a terrible decision.” Uh, not too crazy about this…

• Was McCleskey’s punt return a weight off for him as a returner? “He was doing ok. The punting we’ve faced has been tremendous and that’s limited his opportunities. It’s been more of a lift off me because I just want to see him run.”

• Then, walked off talking about dancing…and something about his counterpart dancing – “He took it over.” Go Pokes!

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