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September 14, 2019

Frank Wilson

San Antonio, Texas

Army - 31, UTSA - 13

Q. Coach, talk about your defense today; with never seeing an offense like that, it seemed to me they played pretty well.
FRANK WILSON: I thought they did so in spots. We game planning knew what to expect from this team, but it's very hard to emulate that. So even when we practiced it, it probably was not at the speed that it was today in our practice sessions because it's not our style of offense. So we gave our defense the best opportunity to see that. In the first quarter you saw that, that we had guys that kind of knew what to do but we could not get there fast enough because we hadn't seen the speed of triple option like we saw it. After the first quarter or after the first couple of series in the first quarter, I thought we settled down and we gained our composure and made some adjustments and put our guys in position to make plays. We began to have tackle for losses, we began to create turnovers at that time, and I thought that was a bright spot for us. I thought the momentum of the game swung in our direction, and we really got after them from a defensive standpoint.

I thought once we came back in the second half, we challenged our offense to answer the bell and to go down and have a great drive, 13-play drive, eat up a ton of clock, and it looks like we're on our way, it's a seven-point game, and we're poised and in position.

They made some adjustments from an offensive standpoint and went away from what their strength is. Their strength is is belly, it's dive option, it's gutting the middle of your defense. Once we took that away, we wanted them to go east and west. They did so, and initially it took us some time to get caught up with it, so they had a couple of runs down on the boundary that is not traditional of them. So if we were going to go out, we were going to do out making them do something that they don't traditionally do.

But proud of our effort. I thought our team played hard. I thought at the back end of the game it's still a 10-point game if we were able to get it in the end zone, go for two. And we dropped two, two critical ones that would have made this game more indicative of what it was. I thought it was a hard-fought game by both teams, and that makes it back a 10-point game. Realistically we're not into moral victories, but just fortitude and fight and grit and determination to play through the final whistle of 60 minutes.

Q. It seemed like after the first couple of drives on defense you switched to playing more bigger guys, five defensive linemen. Can you talk about the impact that made on the defense?
FRANK WILSON: Yeah, we had several packages going into the game that had defensive backs or backers in it, and we felt if they were creating movement against us, against some of our guys who were smaller in stature, that we needed to beef it up. And so we titled and package and called for that personnel grouping, and I thought that they balanced up against that team when they went into two tight formations and things of that nature and really started to move and change the line of scrimmage. I thought Baylen Baker, King Newton, Jaylon Haynes, those guys started to change or penetrate against our opponent and create balls going backwards, bad pitch relationships as well as knocking it loose. We were able to do that to give us a chance of doing so, but that personnel grouping was one that was devised to give us advantage if we thought we could not hold steady in the regular personnel or base personnel look.

Q. 51 rushing yards today; what was Army's defense doing to slow you guys down?
FRANK WILSON: Moving, moving targets, so they moved about on us a ton throughout the duration of the game, and we did not target them. If they were to stay there and allow us to block them, we feel good about it, but they didn't. They ran all type of games within the run game, not just a passing situation where they twist, added backers and added on safeties at times, as well. And when we recognized that, we tried to kick the ball out and throw some passes to be able to make them pay for that. They did a good job of tackling in open field. If we can -- and at times we were able to win one-on-ones out there and gain positive yards. I think we may have thrown close to 200 yards or so still.

But just the constant movement of their defensive line created issues for us.

Q. Can you talk about just all week long you said this about their discipline on offense, they're so disciplined on offense, they're so consistent, and it's almost palpable out there. You can see they believe in what they do.
FRANK WILSON: Yeah, that's their style. That's their style of offense. Again, when you rush the ball 55 times and throw two passes, it's vintage Army football. And so what we have to do is to be able to make those count, and the reality is that if out of 55 of them, if you stuff 48 of them, that still could be a long night for you. You can stuff 48 out of the 55 and those five, six makes all the difference in the world of big plays for them. So they were big plays for them that went down the field when we did not execute to our desire.

Q. Frank Harris was sacked five times. Was that more him trying to get rid of the ball or being under pressure?
FRANK WILSON: Yeah, I need to watch the film. I'm not quite sure. The majority of those came in the first half. They came in the first half. A couple that I'd like to see him throw the ball away and live to play 2nd and 10 as opposed to eating it. We don't have to. There's places we can go with the ball to preserve a hit off of his body and to allow us to play the next down and distance.

I would need to study the film to give you a truthful answer on that.

Q. I know you played a couple of pretty good teams the last couple of weeks, but is there any concern about your offense at this point in the season?
FRANK WILSON: Well, you know, this is a 10-game-win team we just played, 10, 11, whatever they won in the last two years, that's gone to bowl games, that were prolific in their last outing in the bowl game where they won 70-12 and have played some stiff competition. The team the week before that is a bowl team, as well, that will compete for the Big 12 Championship. We've had our work cut out for us.

I think once we start conference play, it will give us a fair evaluation exactly where we're at, and it starts right at the top with a very, very quality North Texas team who competed for our conference championship over the last couple of years, so we get a chance to go to Dallas and compete with that team, and I think that will be a true measurement exactly where we're at as a team before we press a panic button.

Q. Just wanted to ask you about their quarterback, Laws. He's a pretty good operator. Just things that he did and what you saw.
FRANK WILSON: Yeah, he made plays for them. He's hard to hit. He's not big in stature, and so kind of hides under those big offensive linemen and kind of squeaks out of there at times. You know, as the game went on, we tried to be aggressive. We were aggressive. A couple of 4th downs we went for it, whether it's 4th and 8 at our plus 40, whether it was a fake punt. We wanted our kids to know that we came to win and we were going to try to put them in position to win the football game. We coached in that manner. At times we could not -- based on the protection or whatever was happening in the passing game, we wanted to step back and launch balls but not at the compromise of taking sacks or having our quarterback running for his life at times. So we'll have to look at those things and find ways that we can create big plays and take chances of going down the field without losing the integrity of what we're trying to accomplish from a schematic standpoint. But I thought the game was called aggressively from a defensive standpoint, from a special teams standpoint, and at times offensively, as well, to give our kids the best chance to win.

Q. You guys came out in the second half and put a really good drive together. What went right there and why was that harder to replicate the rest of the game?
FRANK WILSON: Yeah, I just think that our pregame speech talked about a book, James Allen, "As a Man Thinketh," and wanting them to recognize that the things that you speak into existence, the things that you believe that you can do, that your body will naturally take over and do those things for you. If that's how you truly see yourself in those situations.

And so I thought our mental approach coming out in the second half was one that gave us advantage because we saw it that way, we talked about it, we depicted it, and then we went out and did it.

Now, here's when you become the quest for greatness: To do it again and again and again on a consistent basis, when your mind begins to drift, when you think of the job instead of the opportunity to conquer an opponent. And so we will continue to build on ourselves from a mental approach to get us where we need to be to establish the consistency we desire, but I just think after the second half, V was given to our team of what we needed to accomplish, how to accomplish it, and they just simply went out and adhered to it.

Thank you, guys.

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