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September 16, 2019

Les Miles

Lawrence, Kansas

LES MILES: Good afternoon. Should I burst into an opening rambling?

Our guys have accomplished to a point, and now it's about the next things that we set our sails on doing. I certainly like where we're at. I think our team will really be motivated to do special things, and understand they've done a couple special things. Now there's more to it. It will be exciting.


Q. Obviously you guys played really well Friday night. Is there any way that you kind of have to rein them back a little bit, like let's not get too excited about this one game because there's obviously a whole Big 12 schedule?
LES MILES: Yeah, yeah, that's -- I'd be disappointed if I felt like our guys were going to have to be reined in. I think they've enjoyed the victory, the feeling of victory and the wonderful joy and pleasure it is to leave a stadium with a victory. I'd be surprised if they didn't want more of that. It's intoxicating.

Q. So it's more of a positive like for momentum heading into Big 12 play you think?
LES MILES: Well, yeah, it can certainly be -- I'm going to ask this team when I see them this afternoon, okay, is that enough? Should we just forget it the rest of the year? What do you think? And see what they say, okay. It would be my guess that they can't wait to practice, and they can't wait to prepare, and West Virginia is a good football team, so they'll be plenty motivated.

Q. Were there any concerns on tape when you and your coaches watched Boston College? Obviously you guys played well, but anything pop up like we need to get better here?
LES MILES: We need to get better at everything that there is on our team. We need to get better in line technique. We need to get better in our defensive punch. I mean, there's places we can get better. And in the same point, we will get better.

Q. I just wanted to follow up on that. With sort of the ups and downs that have kind of started the season, what is the most important part of guys managing that roller coaster from a disappointing loss and then following it up with a big win? How did that bounce back, and what is the key?
LES MILES: You know what, I've got to be honest with you. If you're used to just winning and winning and winning and winning, then it becomes really old hat. I've never been around a team that accomplished what they accomplished and didn't have a lot of positive momentum going for the next game. I'd just be surprised as I could be to think that that would be a very, very difficult piece to put in place.

I think I'm responsible there to make sure that they know. I think they'll tell me, but I don't think that will be a problem.

Q. The offense looked a lot more open and spread, three, four wide, kind of a hurry-up, much different than Coastal Carolina. Is that in the playbook, and how did you decide --
LES MILES: It's not in the playbook, we found it under the shelf while we were at Boston College. We said, hey, guys, what do you think? Maybe we could just put that in today while we're here, and luckily it was there.

No, yeah, that's been in the playbook all along. The opportunity for us to continue that direction, certainly as long as we stay accomplished at the things that we're doing while in that style of offense, we'll stay right with it.

Q. It seemed like the offensive line had a big jump from week 2 to week 3. What was the big difference that you saw from them in this game?
LES MILES: Well, I think I saw a lot of things that I could say about a great majority of the team, but I felt like they wanted to have impact on the game, and I think that I could say that about Dru Prox and just a number of -- Khalil Herbert, Pooka Williams, certainly Carter Stanley, all came to play, and that's what a team looks like when it's a team effort.

I think the defense played extremely well the back half of that game. Yeah, it wasn't going to be their day.

Q. Coach, you stuck with Carter Stanley the first two weeks even though turnovers were an issue. He didn't necessarily play his best. What did you see at the time that kind of showed you he could have a performance like Boston College?
LES MILES: He was quiet. He was not really -- he wanted to hear. He wanted to be coached. He wanted to coach. He wanted to make sure that the receivers were in the spots they needed to be in. He was sincere. All those things.

Q. At Kansas, especially the last few years, I know you haven't been here, but it's been kind of a quarterback carousel. How important or stabilizing do you think it could be for a team to just have one guy at that position for a long time?
LES MILES: Well, yeah, I think if Carter continues to play like that, that will make a difference at the receiving spot, if he gets it out of his hand fast. I mean, there's a lot of places that the quarterback play will make a tremendous difference. That'll happen.

Q. Did you have a favorite play from his game?
LES MILES: I kind of liked how we played. If we can continue to play like that, there will be a lot of favorite plays.

Good question. The question was did we win any -- did the team get awards, and the Peyton Manning Quarterback of the Week was Carter Stanley, and the national FBWAA, which would be Football Writers of America Association -- Association of America would be certainly the way they put it, named us team of the week. I will tell my team that and follow that up with, so now what do you want to do. My guess is they'll want to play harder, better.

Q. You've been doing this a long time. Have you ever in your career had maybe a 180 in such a small stretch of time, in just seven days? You were pretty low walking in hereafter that Coastal Carolina game with us and just had to flip even on a short week. Have you been involved in anything like that before where it's been such a drastic change in such a short period of time?
LES MILES: Yes, I have. I'm not going to tell you. Two games. One was very positive and one was not so.

Q. What was the results after those two games the last time?
LES MILES: We were trying to find a place to park the plane so that we could go have fun, but we couldn't do it then, either. And then the other one was just something I'd rather not talk about. Don't pretend for a minute that when you finish second in a game like football where you're exposed, you are -- your heart's in it. There's no pretending that you -- there's no nonchalant, this is not that big a deal. No, it's your heart, and you're listening to it beat every pound, every stinking second. And your players, when they have that same issue and effect, boy, you've got a good team.

Q. I know you're taking it --
LES MILES: I'll tell you off the record later. Walk me out and I'll give it to you.

Q. I know you're taking a big picture approach, but after the first two home crowds and then going to Boston and winning that game --
LES MILES: We're going to have a home crowd that is spectacular. There is no question that this home crowd is going to be loud, eat a lot of food, drink -- are they allowed to drink there now? They're going to drink and be loud and have fun, and we are going to play our butts off just as hard as we can. It's a good West Virginia team coming in, and they're worth it.

Q. Special teams isn't as talked about as much, but certainly your punt and punt coverage looked exemplary, but overall your assessment of the special teams?
LES MILES: I think we won the special teams battle. I think our punter averaged 49, something like that. He was spectacular all day. Our kicker was really -- high hang time and putting it down in there.

Yeah, I think our special teams are coming. I think there's still a piece of special teams that can be improved, and I would have told you going into that game that I thought that special teams was pretty special. But looking at that film, there was going to be ways to improve.

Q. Anyone stand out to you coverage-wise?
LES MILES: Yeah, yeah. Kenny Logan made three tackles on kickoffs and certainly the opening kickoff. Great young man.

Now, yeah, I think you'll love talking to Kenny.

Q. You obviously kind of joked about finding those plays on a shelf at Boston College, but at what point during the week did you all kind of have a discussion --
LES MILES: We never did. Those were all plays that we had in position to play, and maybe you didn't recognize them, or maybe we made them look a lot better. One of the two.

Q. So there wasn't like -- it wasn't like you went into the week and wanted to use certain plays more than you had the first two weeks?
LES MILES: No, uh-uh, same stuff.

Q. I wanted to see if you had an update on James Sosinski. He didn't play Friday night.
LES MILES: Yeah, I think that HIPAA would not allow me to give too much. But I think he's somewhere between 10 days and five days out.

Are you ready? This is off the record. I'm going to find out whose questions I'm going to answer when I find out who divulges the off-the-record stuff. Okay, now the reason that I would call it off the record is not that it's tremendously bad in any way, it's just that I don't want it spread around about an in-conference opponent. Okay now, raise your hand if you're in. Raise your hand. Otherwise I'm going to have to leave the room. If you guys are not going to raise your hand and say that this is off the record, then I am out of the room.

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