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October 17, 2009

Jimmy Clausen

COACH CHARLIE WEIS: All right, fire away.
THE MODERATOR: Questions for Jimmy Clausen.

Q. How tough is this loss for you guys?
JIMMY CLAUSEN: It's an extremely tough loss. Fighting back at the end, fourth quarter, coming up short, one second to go, it's heartbreaking.

Q. When you're in that situation, you want to be down there with the ball in your hands, do you feel like you had your shot?
JIMMY CLAUSEN: Yeah, definitely. When the game is on the line, I obviously want to have the ball in my hands. We have a lot of confidence in the offense to get a touchdown in that situation. Unfortunately we didn't.

Q. Was there any point in the game when you had doubts, 34-14, maybe, or did you always feel like had you a chance to come back?
JIMMY CLAUSEN: Yeah, if we just executed where we were supposed to execute, we always have a chance to come back, the defense gives us the ball like we do.

Q. Talk about the final play.
JIMMY CLAUSEN: Yeah, you know, Duval slipped. I tried to get it to him quick. Game kind of came down to that last play. He's in there right now. I just went in there and said, You did well, keep your head up. Shouldn't have came down to that last play. There were a lot of opportunities in the game.

Q. How much more heartbreaking does it become when you make that kind of comeback and you're in position to win it?
JIMMY CLAUSEN: You know, it's just a heartbreaker, period, whether you come back from seven points or however many points we did today. It's just a tough loss.

Q. (Question regarding the game clock.)
JIMMY CLAUSEN: No, I saw the clock the whole time. We were trying to get plays in and out, trying to do as much as we could at the time.

Q. How capable is this team of being able to put this behind you?
JIMMY CLAUSEN: We're definitely going to put it behind us. It's a tough loss right now. A lot of guys are down. But we'll come back. We'll come in on Monday and we'll be ready to go against BC.

Q. What was the difference between you in the first half and the second half?
JIMMY CLAUSEN: I don't know what it was. I'll have to watch the tape, figure out what was going on.
The second half, I felt comfortable. The offense felt comfortable moving the ball down the field.

Q. Was the play-calling more conservative in the first half to get in position to make a bid for it in the second half?
JIMMY CLAUSEN: Not at all. Not at all. That's one of the things that Coach Weis stressed coming into the game, don't be conservative like we've been in the past. We want to come out and give it everything we got. I think Coach Weis did a great job of calling the game.

Q. (Question regarding the loss.)
JIMMY CLAUSEN: It's a loss. Whether it's to the No. 1 team in the country or the No. 6 team in the country, it's a loss. I give a lot of respect to SC. They came out and fought hard.
What we did today showed a lot to the country. I'm so proud of this team, keep fighting when we're down. I think that's what the team is all about.

Q. Was that one of your best games against a really good team?
JIMMY CLAUSEN: It's a loss. Statistics really don't matter. Wish we could have got that last one.

Q. Do you feel like you're able to have big games against good teams like that?
JIMMY CLAUSEN: To be honest with you, it's not just about me. It's about the whole team. We just fought really hard at the end. Just came up short.

Q. Late in the game, was turf toe aggravated any?
JIMMY CLAUSEN: Yeah, it was. (Indiscernible) stepped on it a few times, not on purpose, but rushing up the field. Started hurting towards the end.

Q. How was their defense different than some of the other teams you played this season?
JIMMY CLAUSEN: I think the biggest thing is team speed. All those guys can run. That's a big difference when you have guys that are out there. Taylor Mays runs a 4.3, all the linebackers run sub 4.3s. It's different when you're going against team speed like that. I think we did a good job of handling it.

Q. When they win eight in a row, is it still a rivalry?
JIMMY CLAUSEN: Oh, it is. I think you saw out there today, the games come down to it at the end. Like I said, it's just heartbreaking we came up short.
The past few years we weren't competitive at all. That's one of the things that we've gained, starting to be competitive against whoever we're playing. We believe we're going to win each and every time we go out there.
I think that's what we did today. We believed we could go out there and win. Like I said, we came up short.

Q. One play left. What did you say in the huddle?
JIMMY CLAUSEN: I just said, This is what we worked for ever since last season. Let's go make this happen.

Q. Did you talk to any of the other guys besides Duval, give them a pep talk after a game like this?
JIMMY CLAUSEN: Yeah, obviously all the guys are down. We'll be back and be ready to go on Monday for BC.

Q. You were here for the '05 game. Did this feel like the '05 game towards the end of it with the way it was going down, despite the result?
JIMMY CLAUSEN: Yeah, I think so. In the '05 game it was to win the game, either SC was going to win or Notre Dame was going to win. This was to try to tie the game, but it was kind of the same thing.

Q. (Question regarding living on the edge.)
JIMMY CLAUSEN: Yeah, you know, when you live on the edge like that, you're not always going to come out on the winning side. We saw that against Michigan. We came up on the winning side the next two games. When the games come down to that, you're not always going to win at the end. That's what we try to do, not be in those situations.

Q. (Question regarding having a lot of friends on SC's team.)
JIMMY CLAUSEN: Played a great game today. Competed really hard till the end. Like I say, I give SC a lot of credit for coming out today and playing hard.

Q. (Question regarding receiver play in the second half.)
JIMMY CLAUSEN: They played great. Robby came up with a lot of big catches. Probably the biggest catch of the game. Duval came up with a lot of big catches.
All the receivers on our team I have confidence in. Every time I throw the ball, I know they're going to go up and get it, whether it's a deep ball, a ball coming right at them, I know they're going to make a catch, make something happen.

End of FastScripts

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