University of Washington’s head coach Chris Petersen met with the media morning for his weekly press briefing and the Dawgs head coach was honest and forthright in assessing his teams heartbreaking 30-27 loss to the Oregon Ducks. The loss knocked the Huskies out of the playoff race and leaves them scrambling to make it to the Pac-12 title game.
(On wearing a ‘Stay Positive’ T-shirt to the press conference …) “My friend Jon Gordon (gave it to him). I saw it last night when I went home and said, actually I had it yesterday and I had it on just for myself, and then this morning he texted me and I was planning on wearing it anyways and he said you can probably use this in the job you have. I was like yeah, I need 25 of these just to keep recycling them every day.”
Petersen was asked about moving the ball closer to the end zone at the end of regulation.
“I do think this: Hindsight, if I knew then what I know now … I really felt like we were in great shape. I think with two timeouts — I tell our guys this all the time, our players: We’re all in this together. The first guys we second-guess and nitpick to death is ourselves as coaches. There’s no harder critic … even when it goes good. We go back, we’ll watch the tape four and five times from everything we can think of. How do we help these guys be in a better situation? Is this the right thing to do?”
“So at that time, we really felt good about where we were. But with two timeouts, I probably would have called timeout, discussed with Bush if he had a play he really liked. Now with that said, you’re not going to call timeout and not run a play. So you’re probably going to run a play, get Peyton a little bit closer, just make him feel more comfortable. But it was all extremely calculated. We kicked into the wind in the third quarter knowing we wanted the wind in the fourth quarter knowing it could come down to this. So leg strength and all that was not even kind of an issue from where the ball was. We’ve practice that exact situation for probably the last eight weeks — that hash, that situation, calling timeout. Now, the games are different than practice, like we always say. I think everybody on our sideline thought we would get that done. But for me to have a do-over knowing what I know now to get the ball a little closer for him? Yeah.”
On his defense only having just one sack against Oregon
“Yeah, we’d like to get more without question. Now I do think that we were getting there. We were around him. We were hitting him. So sometimes it’s not going to always show up as sacks, but you know I think that’s a big part of the game on defense. If you can get turnovers, get to that quarterback and knock him back, but he’s a hard guy to get a hold of. He’s elusive. He strong. He gets it out quick. Their line does a good job and so it’s a little bit of that back and forth game.”
Petersen was asked about the play of his offensive line, specifically if they took a step forward in their play. The fact he did not directly answer the question is a telling assessment of his Olines performance.
Petersen was asked about the play of his offensive line
“I think they played hard. It’s a good run defense and we ran the ball. I don’t know about another step. I think they played hard. I think they played well. Did we like progress and go, ‘OK, this is the next step as a group.’ I don’t know. There were a couple guys in there that battled pretty hard. They all battled. I thought Nick Harris had a pretty good game. We got more to us, we do. I think they’d all say that.
Petersen was asked about his DBs performance
“I thought we did a good job against an excellent quarterback. He’s a big-time thrower and he can run. And I thought we did a really solid job against a really, really good player. I think our defense played well against him. I really do think it’s two good teams going at it. We had other chances. I know you guys want to spend time talking about that. We can talk about the fourth-and-1 that we didn’t get kind of going hurry-up. We can talk about getting down there in overtime to the 6-yard line with a fresh set of downs and we end up kicking a field goal. Peyton’s awesome.
I know it’s shorter but doesn’t flinch, goes in there. We knew he’d make that. We can go on and on, even backtracking. With that being said, There’s so many good plays. And whatever good plays, right? It’s about winning the game or not winning the game but I couldn’t be more proud of Jake Browning. Second play, has a bad throw and then just locks in and plays nails and makes big-time throws and does his deal. That’s hard. You get off to a rocky start. Short memory and away we go. I think Drew Sample made some tough catches. Just those guys playing hard. Our guys on defense, too. Ben Burr-Kirven, that guy needs a cape. He’s something else. Taylor Rapp, he’s as good as they come. You could go on and on. You put that tape on and watch those kids play and you’re like, there’s impressive football going on.