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October 6, 2018

Kyle Whittingham

Stanford, California

Utah - 40, Stanford - 21

HEAD COACH KYLE WHITTINGHAM: Two tough losses, I guess three when you count the bye, but a couple tough losses. Proud of the way the guys rebounded. Total team effort. Offense put up good numbers. Took care of the football. Did not turn it over for a second consecutive game. We have a chance every week if that happens.

Defense, far too many passed yards but they took the ball away four times including the score and the game winner at the end to put it on ice. So even though we're a little soft in the throw game and we have work to do there, good effort overall.

Good effort overall, and special teams contributed, Matt Gay, four field goals, so a lot of good things. A lot of good things in that game, and we needed that. It's a gut check and a character -- speaks to the character of our players and they can turnaround and come into Stanford, number 16-ranked team in the country.

It's a good football team, physical, just like we knew it would be. Slugged it out with them. It was a good win and now we have a short turnaround and we'll be happy about this for about 12 hours and we've got to get it out of our system. Got Arizona coming to town next Friday, so we've got our work cut out for us. Seems to have come out of the game fairly healthy.

A few things that we have to get evaluated tomorrow. I thought one of the bright spots, real bright spots, was our offense's ability was to get the field goal in the first half. Got us momentum going into half-time, so that was a big positive. Biggest negative of the game is three consecutive touchdown drives given up, but again, they are going to make plays. They have good players. If you don't think they are going to make plays, that's not -- that's make-believe. Thought our guys fought and proud of them. So questions.

Q. 24 seconds left --
HEAD COACH KYLE WHITTINGHAM: Well, we have a guy that can hit from 60. He's the best kicker in the country in my opinion. We ran the ball a couple times to see if we could get some field position, as soon as we did, started using the time outs and started throwing it. Had we not got anything out of the first two runs, we were just going into the half with the lead and not force the ball off the field. But we got those two runs and then in the first down, it was time to get into high gear and use the time outs and try to get in position. All we needed was about the 40-, 42-yard line to give our guy a shot. He hits from 60 every day in practice.

Q. How different is this week from the last two? Seems like you were a little more aggressive?
HEAD COACH KYLE WHITTINGHAM: Aggressive in what way?

Q. On offense specifically.
HEAD COACH KYLE WHITTINGHAM: Numbers were about the same. We ran the football real well tonight. I don't know what we came away with. It was over 200 -- 222, so I think it was about the same dose as last week. Now, from the Washington game, probably more aggressive, but I think we've been very smart on offense the last two games, even though we came up short against Washington State, I realize that. I think we are getting smarter and more of an identity offensively.

Q. It was a long stretch to get to the quarterback but obviously a very good system.
HEAD COACH KYLE WHITTINGHAM: Yeah, they have got some big bodies up front and they are good pass protectors. Credit to them. The quarterback was getting it out pretty decently and on time, and then we hit some seven-man pressure, some peel zero pressure where we bring one more than they can pick up (ph) got a couple crucial sacks out of that.

The very last drive, we got a couple sacks off four-man pressure I don't know how many sacks we ended up with, three, four, five. The big key was the takeaways. Four takeaways. Any time you're plus four, you're not going to lose many games. Pretty sure that's what we were tonight, plus four.

Q. Do you think this is more what your team is?
HEAD COACH KYLE WHITTINGHAM: I hope so. My estimation, exactly what I toll hem in the locker room is that's who we are and we need to be that team next week. Next week, we have to practice the same way and have a great week of practice and put the work in, go to class, do everything right, which these guys do, and play well again next week.

Q. Seems like offense stays on schedule, play calling gets easier.
HEAD COACH KYLE WHITTINGHAM: Much easier, yeah. I think that's a common denominator with everybody. If you can stay ahead of the chains, you have a lot of options, and we were ahead of the chains most of the night. Very few penalties. We're an aggressive man coverage team and we're going to get some PIs. That's just going to happen.

Q. The 100-yard touchdown --
HEAD COACH KYLE WHITTINGHAM: I thought he was a couple yards out. Got a taste of his speed there. He's a tremendously gifted athlete and it was a perfect call in that it was a red zone coverage where he can play aggressive outside technique because he's got inside help and ball is slightly underthrown and he stole it and out the gate.

Q. Shyne got more play today.
HEAD COACH KYLE WHITTINGHAM: We are, I think we talked in the last press conference on Monday, that you earn your reps and you earn your playing time, and Armand is really starting to emerge, I guess you could say. You saw Zack hobble off again. He's still fighting some bumps and bruises, but Armand had, what, ten carries tonight and was very productive.

Yeah, to answer your question, yeah, he's earned his carries and he's got the most carries of the entire season in this game due to how he's practicing.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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