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Washington State 42, Washington 35
Release: 11/24/2007
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Nov. 24, 2007

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Washington Head Coach Tyrone Willingham

On the game: "Initial thoughts are, you compliment your opponent, they played hard. They made the plays they had to make to win the football game. I thought we were in position on a couple of occasions to win the football game and possibly pull away, but we couldn't make the plays and couldn't get the things done that we needed to do to do that. So it ends up being a very disappointing night for us."

On Washington State's last touchdown: "We just blew the coverage. Our communication was not good, not complete across the board. We had some guys playing one thing and some playing something else."

On if the staff is putting together good defensive game plans: "Let me answer (that question). Yes, I think we can. But one of the things that you have to do is that you've got to be able, when they're throwing the ball that much, to find a way to get some turnovers, and we had opportunities with some turnovers and we didn't make them. So, we've got to do a better job as coaches of helping our guys; our guys have to do a better job of trying to create and make those plays when we have an opportunity to make them. Because one of those, I thought, might have even been a touchdown had we been able to make that play. Those are big swings and big changes in football games.

On his aggressive play-calling (four 4th-down attempts): "The first thing with the 4th-down calls, a lot of those happened right in that kind of in-between yardage where I didn't think you gained that much by punting, so you might as well take the chance to go for it. The two-point play I thought it was the right time to do it, so I went for it. I don't think it was necessarily an overly aggressive risk on my part. I thought it was just the right thing to do at the right time."

On what he told his players following the game: "This is a tough one, because this is one that obviously I respect our opponent. I told our guys its never easy coming into this ballgame. It's a ballgame that's played with a great deal of emotion and that emotion doesn't die. I call it a hundred years of emotion out there and it's going to fight right to the end. But we didn't make the plays that we could have made. It's my job to help put our guys in position to do that and it's their job to see if we can find a way to get it done, and we didn't do that.

On quarterback Jake Locker's performance: "The first thing is the injury that Jake sustained a couple of weeks back, he was healthy, he was capable of playing and I thought he played just as you'd want your quarterback to play. He was a true leader for our football team. When it got tough, he dug in and did absolutely the best that he could. I was extremely proud of him for his effort tonight."

On whether he wishes the season was over after tonight, or if he is glad his team has one more game (at Hawaii): "No, I don't wish we were done. I think there are a lot of good things to draw from this. We've got an opportunity to go play a football team that gives us an opportunity to recover some of the things that we've lost this year. We've got an opportunity to play a football game in December. When you start playing in December usually good things are happening and we want to start recognizing that."

On two crucial plays in the fourth quarter (lost fumble and defensive holding): "They really kind of speak for themselves. You don't want a young man to fumble. As you know, turnovers are huge in football, especially when they happen in the fourth quarter. The holding call, somebody may look at it and dispute it, somebody may not. But those are plays that you can't make. You can't do those things, especially at that time because I think if not for that holding call, we're out of that series. That field position and where it was and the type of football game it could have made a huge difference.


Washington State Head Coach Bill Doba

General Statement: "We started the game with their kick run back to put us down seven to nothing. Our kids just kept battling. What can I say? The coaches had a great game plan for them. This group of seniors, all four years, has had problems one week and battled back the next. They've got great character. Look at last week, 52-17....This being the Apple Cup helped a bit. And I think this being our last game and not having one more - that might've helped too. My hat's off to them. They played hard. Great game."

On Alex Brink: "Alex has done it all year for us. He's had a couple bad ball games, but it's not always Alex. Many times the routes have gone wrong. I think he's the only Cougar quarterback to win three [Apple Cups]. Someone told me that coming off the field. If that's not a signature win, to heck with everybody. He's a good guy and he deserves a lot of credit."

On the Cougars' fifth win: "I'm just glad to have a win. I'm glad to see the win and hopefully it's a springboard for us into next year."

On the UW-WSU rivalry: "The best friends I have in coaching are on the UW staff, other than the ones on our staff. Randy Hart and all those guys - they're good people. Randy and I have been going at each other for thirty years or so. Ten years in the Big-10 and 19 years here. I was so happy that there wasn't any trash talking afterwards. There was mutual respect, the kids came together and prayed, there weren't fans trashing anybody. I'm proud of our fans, I thought they won with grace and dignity and that's what this program has always been about."

On coming back next year: "I'm not going to resign. I sure hope I'm back next year. Though it won't be here it'll be over in Pullman."


Washington Kicker Ryan Perkins

On being more consistent: "I think it's a combination of my leg getting stronger and getting used to Husky Stadium. I felt good at practice all week. I noticed that there is one swing that I do that always gets a solid kick on the ball. With the two kicks I could tell that my leg is getting stronger. It started at Oregon State when I had a 40-plus yard kick, then three against Cal and the two today. I think it is a matter of us being strong as a unit. When everything is smooth it makes me comfortable and my swing is consistent."

On kicking in front of a large crowd: "What I think is kind of funny is that if you have a section of hecklers it is about equal to having 70,000 people yelling. What is neat about the Apple Cup is when you go out there for a kick it sounds like you are in a visiting stadium. Half the people in the crowd are visiting fans so it creates an interesting scenario when you're out there."

Washington Wide Receiver Curtis Shaw

On being too fast on the end-around play: "We just need to work on the timing a little more. Sometimes it is open early and sometimes it opens up late so we just have to get better at it so that it will look the way it is supposed to."

On playing in the Apple Cup for the first time: "I was really excited. I've heard all of the stories and what the rivalry is like so I was pretty excited to see what it would actually be like. It's just too bad we didn't get it done."

On the offense in the future: "We're going to look really good. We lose all of our receivers, but we have a bunch of young receivers coming up that are learning the system. We have guys returning in other places to give us experience on the field. We still have Jake Locker and Brandon Johnson who already has game experience so it looks good for next year and beyond."

Washington Wide Receiver Anthony Russo

On starting fast: "We wanted to start fast and we did just like we did last week. But we shot ourselves in the foot with penalties and turnovers. It was us, not anyone else. That's not the coaches, that's us. We gave it away."

On recovering from turnovers: "You have to keep fighting. We can't dwell on them. Those plays are in the past and we can't do anything about them. Guys will make mistakes and we know that. We have to just forget about it and move on."

On telling Jake Locker to run out of bounds: "We know Jake is not going to go out of bounds. I just tell him to keep playing hard because Jake is a tough guy so he isn't going to let any type of hit keep him out of the game. After the hit he took at Oregon State he wanted to play the next week and he probably could've. Jake is a tough guy and he isn't going to run out of bounds and I like that about him."

On the attitude in the locker room: "It is disappointment of course. We don't want to lose to the Cougars and we did. We gave that one away. We had it in our hands and we gave it away. We definitely played hard, but we gave it away."

On next week: "We need to take it out on Hawaii. They are undefeated like we wanted them to be. They are ranked, like every other team we play and we want to finish the season with a win."


Washington State Linebacker Andy Mattingly

On being down 10-0 early: We gave up that first touchdown on the opening kickoff, and that gave them a lot of momentum. We came out as a defense, and they already had one on the board. We gave up a field goal. We didn't give up another touchdown - that gave us a little confidence that we could stop them.

On Jake Locker: "Jake Locker is a good quarterback. He is fast. We came out and we tried to contain him, but he got his yards. We came out as a defense and we played pretty well."

On first Apple Cup: "I grew up watching this rivalry game, and it means so much for me to win the game. I hate to say this, but I hate seeing the Cougars lose in this game. To go out and win, especially in Seattle, it was one of the best feelings ever."

On last game of the season: "We made it our own little bowl game. It was the seniors' last game, and we just made it our own bowl. It was by far the sweetest game of the year."

Washington State Quarterback Alex Brink

On final touchdown drive: "We kind of got the big run, which helped. The big play I think was to (Michael Bumpus) on first down, second down maybe. It was him over the middle; that was the play that we'd been looking for. Kind of classic Michael Bumpus - goes over the middle and makes a big play in traffic. I was able make a good throw, and that set everything up."

On final touchdown pass to Brandon Gibson: "We had just run it and we had gotten it so we decided to go back - it wasn't the same play, but it was very similar - we don't run a lot of play action out of the shotgun, but we happened to run it this time. We got them to bite pretty hard and they all came down on Bumpus running a bubble screen. I just pulled up in time and was able to see him and throw it."

On winning three Apple Cups: "It feels awesome right now to have that win personally, as a teammate for the seniors, and for our program. It means so much to me. To be in a company like that: of all of the great quarterbacks that have been here, it was awesome."

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