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UNIVERSITY OF OREGON FOOTBALL MEDIA CONFERENCE
October 14, 2017
Stanford - 49, Oregon - 7
Q. Was that frustrating? You guys knew it was going to be slow, and then in the first quarter he really did his thing?
WILLIE TAGGART: Yeah, we knew we were going up against a really good back, and we knew we had to gang tackle in order to stop him, and we didn't do a good job of that in the first quarter. I think he got the majority of his runs in that first quarter.
I thought in the second quarter our guys did a better job of tackling them, and that helped us in that standpoint against him in the second quarter. But first quarter we didn't do a good job tackling.
Q. Do you think, Willie, you guys would throw more that perhaps (indiscernible) off to a good start (indiscernible)?
WILLIE TAGGART: Yeah, I think that had something to do with it. Especially early in the game, they turned the ball over and we knew we couldn't turn the ball over if we wanted to beat this football team. We had two turnovers, and I think he was he was shook a little bit. Came to the sideline and tried to get his confidence back.
We knew going in that we felt like we could run the football. So we tried to play to our strengths and do that. But when you turn the ball over like that, it's tough against a good football team.
Q. How much better has Braxton performed in practice than what you're seeing in the games? Is it a big drop-off?
WILLIE TAGGART: I think if I saw that in practice, he wouldn't be in the game playing. The kid had a good week of practice. He just came out and didn't have the game that we wanted to. So I don't think they practiced (indiscernible) practiced like they performed today and put them in the game.
Q. (Indiscernible) has he been better in practice than he showed?
WILLIE TAGGART: They both did a good job in practice. We had a good week of practice. We just came out here today and didn't execute like we needed to at the quarterback position. And we needed to play a little better than what we did.
Q. Obviously, a lot of attention on the quarterback, but did you feel like you played well enough in any area to win tonight?
WILLIE TAGGART: 49-7? No. I think -- I don't think we played well enough, I don't think we coached well enough. That's every single one of us, we didn't do enough.
Q. When you lose the quarterback, obviously you need everybody else to elevate their game. Can it go the other way where maybe guys lose a little bounce in their step when the quarterback goes down?
WILLIE TAGGART: I don't think that's what the issue was right now. I think we've just got to play better. We've got to play more disciplined than what we are doing.
Again, we're not good enough to turn the ball over like we did against a good football team and expect to win. We've got to take care of the football. We knew going into this game we weren't going to get many possessions. So turning the ball over was something we couldn't do. We couldn't get them extra possessions, and we did totally opposite of what we wanted to.
Q. I think there were three first downs that got negated by penalties. (Indiscernible)?
WILLIE TAGGART: That's a great question. That's a great question. We're working on it. The we're trying to get them corrected. Just got to keep working. We got to keep coaching and keep working. Maybe I'll give David a call. He only had two penalties. That's crazy.
Q. What do you tell Braxton after a game like tonight?
WILLIE TAGGART: Just keep working. Let's go back to work. Nobody's going to feel sorry for us. We've got to get back to work and find a way to get back in the win column.
Q. Did you see anything from Dillon Mitchell and Charles Nelson coming back from injury?
WILLIE TAGGART: No. Actually, I don't think Charles was 100%, but (indiscernible) being on the sideline and he really wanted to help his football team being out there.
Dillon had a good week of practice doing things, and there were times in this game where those guys were open. We've just got to get the ball to them and make sure we know exactly where we're going with the football and get the ball to our playmakers.
Q. What was the final straw that eventually you decided to go with Taylor?
WILLIE TAGGART: Well, I just thought we'll put Taylor in, thinking that it would give us a spark, and it didn't.
Q. Coach, do you know what happened on the blocked punt?
WILLIE TAGGART: Yeah, they ran threw and ran through --
Q. Somebody missed a block.
WILLIE TAGGART: I wouldn't say missed the block. They just got defeated and got knocked back into the punt.
Q. When you look at the struggles in the passing game, is it more receivers not getting open or the quarterback just not finding the receiver?
WILLIE TAGGART: We've got to find the receivers. You know, there's a lot of times in the game where guys were open and we didn't go to the guy we were supposed to. Then we've got to coach better and make sure our guys know exactly where to go with the football. And that's happening too much. That can't happen if we expect to win or score points. Because there were guys open and we didn't get it to them. Then when they're not open, we have to know where to go with the ball, check it down or throw it away.
Q. You talk all the time about playing with energy. Do you get a sense guys are still fired up, or do you see them on the sideline with resignation?
WILLIE TAGGART: I thought they kept playing. I thought our guys kept playing in this game. I know we kept talking about it as coaches. Just play, not worry about the score. Want to see guys compete and go. I thought there were guys still playing. But human nature, you get down, you start to feel a little bad.
Again, until we get this team like we need to and keep building it, we've got to get something out of that -- what do you call it? We've just got to play better. We've got to play better and be more confident in ourselves. When things don't go our way, we can't just get down the field like, oh, here we go. We've got to get excited. The tougher it gets, the better we have to play.
Q. Do you have any updates on Crosby?
WILLIE TAGGART: Paul (phonetic) had a concussion.
WILLIE TAGGART: Yes.
Q. What did you expect from Bryce Love? Were you surprised at how efficient he was at passing the ball?
WILLIE TAGGART: I was. We had guys in coverage and they made plays for us. The tight ends, big tight end. I think that they did a good job boxing our guys out and catching the ball. I think whenever you can run the football, it always gives you an advantage in the play action in getting the ball and getting guys open.
Q. Looks like you went with young DBs for pretty much the first quarter on. Springs and Ugo just not playing well in your mind?
WILLIE TAGGART: That's a great question. I think Springs was there early, he didn't play as well as he needed to. Again, trying to put someone else in there and see if we can get a spark. Again, I think you saw that overall, not just Springs, but everybody. Offense and defense. We just didn't play well tonight.
Q. (Indiscernible) you passed the ball 13 times to just kind of reduce?
WILLIE TAGGART: Say again?
Q. What is the message to wide receivers when you went to the ball 13 times?
WILLIE TAGGART: If I call a run play, go out there and block and do your best blocking for us and help our football team. If I call a pass play, go out and run a great route and throw it until you catch it. That's pretty much what it is.
Q. Sort of an extension of this game, but can you give us an update on Herbert?
WILLIE TAGGART: Yeah, he's getting better. He wants to play. He wants to play bad. He's healing and rehabbing, and hopefully he'll heal soon.
Q. In your own mind, is there any sort of time line that you could maybe work him back in?
WILLIE TAGGART: No, I try to stay out of that. I leave that to the doctors and let them tell us when he can come back. I know Herbert really wants to get back out there. He's rehabbing his tail off every single day. He actually went out the other day, I don't know if he was supposed to, but he threw the football. He's got to heal.
Q. That was today?
WILLIE TAGGART: No. This week.
Q. Is there any concern that these types of losses (indiscernible)?
WILLIE TAGGART: No, not at all. This team won't be demoralized. This team's going to bounce back. We're going to find a way to bounce back. We've got some good kids that work their tail off. Again, they could easily be looked at that. But this is the first time we've had two back-to-back losses. We've got to stop. We've got to find a way to stop it.
We've got an opportunity next week going down to L.A. and try to get back in the win column. But we've got to play a hell of a lot better if we're going to do that. We can't hurt ourselves. We've got to be more disciplined, and we've got to throw the football better.
Q. How handicapped do you feel on the sideline? You say you can't call that play, can't call that play?
WILLIE TAGGART: Not necessarily. I just -- I called them, I want them to execute them. I think that early it was a little frustrating when we called some early in the game and we threw picks. That really hurt us. That got us behind really early in the game.
Again, where we're at right now, we can't play from behind. We need to make sure we stay in the game or up in the game.
So, yeah, and then we've got to make sure, again, our quarterbacks know exactly where to go with the ball and not look at the rush or anything else. Just throw it to the open guy.
Q. It seemed you had trouble getting to Chryst (phonetic) in the pocket. Is that kind of a product of a talented offensive line? Where did that come from?
WILLIE TAGGART: Well, I think when you can run the football, it helps you protect a lot better. You know, when you can run the ball and the defense is so focused on stopping runs, sometimes guys can get open because they're looking to stop the run. Then they didn't do any like big drop-back. They got rid of the ball quick. They threw some outs, and they threw some verticals where they can just drop and let it rip.
So I think it's more of that than anything. It wasn't like most teams we played this year where you're spread out and four wide and just run down the field.
We knew going in that it wasn't -- we weren't going to get there often because of how they played and the style of ball they played. But we've got to be better in coverage.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports