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November 12, 2012

Seth Doege

D.J. Johnson

Q.  How much is just sort of how thorough that loss was last year and what a motivating factor for you guys to be on the wrong end of such a lopsided score?
SETH DOEGE:  It was an embarrassment, I think, for the entire program.  I mean, they were probably the better football team last year, but there was no reason that it should have been that lopsided.  I didn't play‑‑ I probably played one of my worst games I've ever played, and the defense didn't play a very good game either.  It was just all around.  It was just a terrible football game by us.  Definitely an embarrassment.
But we're a totally different football team than we were last year.  I don't think we'll lay an egg like that ever again.

Q.  What are you going to do to try and solve the red zone quagmire?
SETH DOEGE:  Well, if you look at it, we have some opportunities that we didn't convert in the red zone with touchdowns.  But we're still top 15 in the country in red zone efficiency, so we're not terrible.  But there are times that it feels like there are times that we needed to really score touchdowns, very critical times in the football game.  And that's what makes it seem that it's like well, we have a red zone problem.
Well, we really don't, but we need to score touchdowns.  I think that puts us, obviously, in a better position to win a football game.

Q.  Do you go through practice schemes where you put yourself in the red zone and you run through the series of downs?
SETH DOEGE:  Yes, we script in the red zone and we actually did it a lot more last week than we ever have.  I don't know what it is.  I feel comfortable in the red zone, I feel like once we get past the 20, I think we're going to score regardless.
But it seems that there have been critical moments in football games where we just shot ourselves in the foot.  It's nothing that we can't fix.  So I think we'll be okay.

Q.  You spoke a little about Eric after the game, but what specifically about his route running?  Because the thing that seemed to stand out is you he's just always open.  What is it about him as a route runner that makes him so good?
SETH DOEGE:  It's what he does.  If he needs to take it seven steps and put his foot in the ground, he's going to take it seven steps and put his foot in the ground.  I think that helps him out that he's very coachable.  He understands that if he does his job right, then it's going to allow somebody else to get open too.
I think he's very explosive out of his cuts when his legs are fresh.  So that being said, I think that's what helps him get open.  Discipline in his routes and how explosive he is out of his cut.  Because some guys can stick their foot in the ground, but it takes them a little bit to get out.  Well, Eric can stick his foot and he's out.  He's not a speed runner guy, but he's very explosive when it comes to putting his foot in the ground.

Q.  It seemed that you made a pretty conscious effort to get the ball to Tyson.  On the touchdown, when you threw it up were you thinking if the DB doesn't turn around we have a touchdown here, or were you just happy to get to this guy on Senior Day?
SETH DOEGE:  No, it was part of my progression.  I went through my progression like I always do.  I may have been a little late, that's why it looked so different.  I might have been a little late on the throw because I hung on to the first progression too long.
But I knew Tyson was open, because that guy was trailing Tyson.  He had his back to me.  When I threw it, I still thought we had a chance just because that guy had no idea where the ball was.  Tyson did a really good job of he didn't act like the ball was coming to him until the very end.  That's what I think really made that play was he just acted like the ball's not coming oh, there it is, and that guy had no idea.

Q.  In overtime, they scored first.  I know you have a lot of confidence in your offense, but are there nerves when you know we have to score especially this one, you got the third down before you made the big play.  Is it hard sometimes to fight those nerves that arise?
SETH DOEGE:  I don't know what it is about overtime games and this football team, but it almost seems like we relax even more.  I know for me, personally, it's like I'm in my element.  I don't know what it is.  Especially that last drive, I just felt comfortable.  Maybe it's because we trust each other and like each other as a football team that we know we can get it done.
You know we didn't panic at all.  We felt like we had a great play call, and if we executed it, it was going to be big for us.  I want to say that it's just the fact that we're such a good team and we like each other that when it comes to big‑time moments like that, we can just relax and play.

Q.  Have you had a chance to look at Oklahoma State, and what you can do against them?
SETH DOEGE:  Just a little bit.  Just watched a few games.  More like how they play and how they run around and stuff thinking of what play would be good here and what play would be good there.  They're just like any other team in the Big 12.  They play really hard.  They're a lot better than they've been in the past.
I think with the quarterback situation, the defense had to step up a little bit and bail them out sometimes.  It's kind of unique that they can play three quarters and still win games.  It means all three of them have the trust of 105 guys and that's pretty cool.  We'll definitely have to be ready to play at I high level.

Q.  What's been the reaction of Eric Stephens getting the winning touchdown pass?  Has that brought everybody together in the extent that if you work hard, you get rewarded?
SETH DOEGE:  I think everybody was excited for him.  Eric's one of our leaders and a likeable guy and has a lot of guys that respect him on this football team.  It was one of those things that we knew once the play call was called, if it's in Eric's hands, it's going to get done.  That's two touchdowns in overtime.  I remember telling Eric get in the end zone because we don't want to come out here for an inch or a yard play if you don't score.  So he dove over the offensive line and did what he had to do.
But he's a competitive guy.  I was excited for him.  I don't think going into the season he thought he would have the role that he has, but he's accepted it, and he plays hard regardless, and he plays hard for all of his teammates and his coaches.  It just identified him as a great character guy.  He has a big heart and loves his football team.

Q.  Can you talk about the emotions, you run out, your fiancee's there, your mom and dad, your family, for all of that, to get ready for the game and to go out in double overtime as a senior, getting the W in the last game at the Jones.  Can you take us through those emotions?
SETH DOEGE:  Pregame stuff I'm not big on, especially during a football game.  I'm there to play a football game.  It was fun.  I'm glad my parents and Abby and my grandparents got to experience that.  I got to experience it with them.  But once I gave them the flowers and stuff, I was ready.  Like let's go.  We're not going to stand here anymore.
But it was a fun time.  I was glad that we sent the seniors out the right way winning in the Jones.  We didn't expect to‑‑ I think we had some opportunities to put it away early, and we didn't expecting to into overtime.  But that's the way football is.  I'm just glad we came out with a W.  But it's something we'll remember, for sure.

Q.  Knowing how long it's been since you've won up in Stillwater as a program, how does that weigh on you knowing that's going to be a tough place to get a win?
SETH DOEGE:  Regardless how long we haven't won or regardless how tough it is, I think that's the mindset you've got to have any time you go on the road just because it is tough.  It's tough to win on the road regardless of wherever you play.  I really think their stadium and their atmosphere is one of the top in the country.  I think for the guys that have been there, they understand that it's going to be a tough place to play.  Also, when you getting to in that type of environment, it's a lot of fun.  Because if you do go out there and execute at a way that you play at a high level like you want to do, you put them away, and it's one of the best feelings of college football is silencing a crowd.

Q.  Along the same line, are there any lessons you can take from last year's Oklahoma game and apply to a game like Stillwater?
SETH DOEGE:  I think I'd have to sit down and think about it, but nothing that really comes to mind.  I think the biggest thick when we went to OU was we really didn't at that point feel like we had anything to lose.  We just left it all out there.
So I felt like this time it's the same way.  You know, we're in a bowl game.  The only thing that matters if we win, we can get to a better bowl game.  But I think we just need to relax and be ready to play and play at a high level and have a lot of fun doing it.

Q.  As a player in the stadium, talk about the fans being right there on top of you, and some things that make it tough playing there?
SETH DOEGE:  Yeah, they have these paddles and they hit these mats the whole time.  It's loud.  They get into the game and like you said, the fans are right on top of you.  I'm sure everybody knows they love to talk to you and say things to you.  But that's what makes it fun.  I think something about this football team really enjoys a challenge like that.

Q.  Why do you think you guys have struggled so much when running the yardage?
SETH DOEGE:  I don't know if I would have defined it as struggling.  I thought we've been pretty good around the ball, short yardage.  This last game we didn't, obviously.  But I think when Kansas did a good job with having movement up front, twisting and stuff like that.  Sometimes when they twist, it's hard for the offensive line to identify who they have and they can twist right into a run.  So sometimes the defense has play calling and that's just the way it goes.

Q.  Can you talk to us a little about chatter after the game?  It wasn't really about the game.  It was more about what went on from the sidelines and everything that's ensued from that.
SETH DOEGE:  I have no idea what that's all about.  I know just as much as you do.

Q.  What are your thoughts on playing seven day games in a row?
SETH DOEGE:  We don't have any control over it.  I think as players a 2:30 game is pretty cool, because you don't have to wait in the hotel all day.  You wake up, and you eat and go through your walk through and have an hour to focus in on your room and watch a little games.  But those night games are fun to play in.  But at the same time, you sit in your room for three hours and it kind of gets old and you're ready to play.  So I kind of like playing at 2:30.

Q.  Of course we know the importance of finishing strong and more games, what are you going to tell the guys this week in practice to make sure the job gets done?
SETH DOEGE:  Thought we had a three‑game season starting with Kansas, finished that one, now we're at Oklahoma State.  That's all we're focused on.  Not focused about what bowl game we're going to be in.  We're not focused about Baylor.  We're focused about Oklahoma State.
It's huge for us to understand if we play hard and fast it gives us an opportunity to finish the game.  We need to have that.  We have a great week of practice understanding the game plan and what we want to do going into the game.  Come Saturday we have a lot of fun, play at a high level, execute, and have fun doing it.
It's going to be a real battle.  They're a good football team, and we are too.  We just need to be ready to play.

Q.  D.J., how much of a motivating factor is how thorough your loss was to Oklahoma State last year?  What were some of the effects of getting beat that bad?
D.J. JOHNSON:  I try to wash that out of my mind.  That was a tough one, man.  I've never in my wildest dreams evenor nightmares even imagined getting beat like that, you know what I mean?  I know what this team is capable of, and that was just a difficult loss.  Nothing‑‑ it seemed like nothing was going right that entire season.  It seemed every ball bounced the opposite way.  We couldn't just get it, and that has an effect.
A lot of people don't know, but this senior class hasn't gotten a victory against Oklahoma State as well.  People focused on like the UTs and things like that, but Oklahoma State has been a good football team for some time now.  They started to get credit and get respect, and it's about time they get their respect.  But it's going to influence us or impact us to make us want to go out there and grind harder, go out there and play to the best of our ability.
We remember what happened last year, and we definitely want to make sure that that doesn't occur again.  If possible, we want to reverse it, and make it occur the other way.

Q.  What challenges does it have switching from a team that's going to run and play to Oklahoma State now.  What are you guys concerned about?
D.J. JOHNSON:  That's something we're a little more comfortable with, playing against Oklahoma State.  This is a team that does basically the same thing our offense does.  We understand scheme, and this is back to the basics.  This week is definitely back to basics.  It's back to understanding what we've done against our team and how to prepare for their team for the passing attack.  It's a lot easier to understand route concepts than blocking schemes.  So many things can go wrong on a missed block, but you don't Virginia rite of route combinations that you can just run.
Our coach tells us that, and he's just so, so‑‑ we're going to trust our coaches have their game plan ready, and going back to the fundamentals of the game, and doing what we've learned is going to take us through this game.

Q.  You guys had fun this past game.  On the sideline, you guys are like let's have fun.  We're having fun.  I saw smiles even when things didn't go your way.  Talk about how important that was getting through that game, and how important it's going to be in a hostile environment?
D.J. JOHNSON:  That's huge for us.  We always have to be enthusiastic.  The majority of the time the team that has the most fun and is most enthusiastic is the team that wins the game.  So we have to go out there with that mentality.  We have to go out there really excited to play aggressive, and just go out there and have fun.
At the same time, those laughs and smiles that you've probably seen are probably smiles to just keep the team up, you know what I mean?  You don't want the morale to go down by anyway.  If the morale on the sideline goes down, the ballgame changes.  So we want to make sure we keep that up, keep each other encouraged and feed off each other's energy.

Q.  When you played Texas was it difficult to maybe prepare for two guys, Oklahoma State's got three different guys.  Does that change the way you prepare or do they all do such similar things that it doesn't make much of a difference?
D.J. JOHNSON:  In regards to?

Q.  To them having three different quarterbacks that have played this year.
D.J. JOHNSON:  I haven't really paid attention to them.  I've only been focusing on the games these past weeks.  So we'll have to watch film to see what they do.  I'm not sure exactly what they do.

Q.  What is it about this team rising to the occasion in overtime this year?
D.J. JOHNSON:  The will to win.  It's that simple, man.  We have that passion and desire to win.  We knew what our goal was coming into this game and coming into this season.  Though we may not achieve it, we're still going to fight for it and fight for each other.

Q.  Is it different in overtime?  Why so much success?
D.J. JOHNSON:  It's just that.  Sheer will to win, man.  We want to succeed.  So I feel like since everybody wants to succeed, we play for each other.  We were doing things that a couple calls that were made we probably did some adjustments that probably weren't supposed to be adjusted, but it was like look, we've got to make a play.  It's time to make something happen.  We had people step up that were able to do that.

Q.  Do more nerves come into play?  Like if we don't get it done on this drive or this play, that's the game.  Do you have to fight nerves once it gets into overtime?
D.J. JOHNSON:  No, not really.  It's the same as when you're in regulation because in regulation, it can go horribly.  You can give up a touchdown, one touchdown can be the game deciding, we can think that we have an opportunity and the flags come into play or someone just doesn't do their assignment, and it's the same thing.
So we go out there and stay level headed.  We treat it as regulation.  We don't want them to score at any time.  So there is no more pressure on us in overtime to get the stop.  We just want to make sure we go out there and get the job done.

Q.  You've only had one opportunity to play at the stadium.  What make it's so tough there?  The fans right on top of you?  What is it about that environment that makes it such a tough place to play?
D.J. JOHNSON:  Those fans, they have great fans out there.  Their fans are passionate about their team.  I respect that.  Me, I enjoy that.  I enjoy going into football stadiums like that, because then it's kind of like what you do when you win, it's kind of like a slap in the face to the fans.
So I'm excited about that.  I'd like to make things happen or try to make things happen when we go into tough crowds and things like that.  But they have a great fan base.  The fact that they're so close, they're loud, and they're excited about their team being out there, I think that is going to impact the game.

Q.  D.J., Josh Stewart is in the Top 10 in the country in receiving, and it looks like the receivers are performing well right now.  What do you remember about them from last year?  What are your thoughts about facing those guys?
D.J. JOHNSON:  Like I said, I tried to erase that memory out of my mind.  I really don't remember too much about those receivers.  I'm pretty sure they were good guys, pretty good route runners.  But I trust in our cornerbacks and trust in our defensive back field.  We have a group of senior leaders back there that are able to communicate, and communicate with each other and get the job done.  So I trust that Eugene Neboh will hold his side down.  I trust that Tre' Porter and also Bruce Jones and Cody Davis will do their jobs.  That's going to be key to make sure we go out there, play for each other and do our job.  Make sure we understand what's going on out there, and understand how to fit up certain routes and certain route combinations.

Q.  Do you feel that OSU is as balanced as any other team in the Big 12 with the running and passing attack?
D.J. JOHNSON:  No, not so much.  I think the most balanced team we've faced has been TCU.  That's probably been the most balanced team that we've faced running and passing‑wise.  From Oklahoma State, they're more of a pass team.  Like I said, they're very similar to Texas Tech when it comes to their offense I just feel like we have to go out there and impact that and remember what we do against our offense to make those plays against them.

Q.  How much did Terrance not being out there effect you guys?  I know you'll talk about guys who are there, but how much of a part of this team is he?  Did we see that the first time with him being injured?
D.J. JOHNSON:  Terrance Bullitt is a great player, man.  He's a hard worker.  He has a positive attitude in every situation.  He's just an overall great teammate to have.  Missing him was huge for us but we have some guys that were able to step up and make things happen, so that's big for us.  When your name is called, you want to make sure you're able to go out there and do some things and get that done.
So missing him, we'd love to have him back.  We're wishing him the best, the best in health and everything.  But I feel we have guys that can step up and impact the game as well.

Q.  Seeing Eric Ward in practice, what makes him such a good receiver and allows him to always seemingly be open every time?
D.J. JOHNSON:  He's special.  That guy, he's special.  His hands are great; his route running is excellent.  He changes it up.  Either everything looks the same or something will be different that makes you think that you may think that you caught on to something, but you really haven't.  So he may stem inside.  He usually stems inside and does one thing, now he'll do something else.  His route running is excellent.  He's a hard worker.  He takes off his shoulder pads and has someone throwing balls over his left shoulder, right shoulder.  It goes down the field five yards, and every five yards he's turning one way and catching the passes.  That guy puts in a lot of work, lot of time and lot of effort.  He's a great player.

Q.  A lot of the game had to do with what went on the sideline.  Can you comment on how that victory may have been overshadowed?
D.J. JOHNSON:  I didn't pay attention to it.  I'm not familiar with what occurred.  I really don't know, honestly.  I haven't paid attention to it.

Q.  Going back to Eric Stephens and Darrin Moore touchdown, did you get a chance to see that?
D.J. JOHNSON:  Yeah.

Q.  How exciting was that?
D.J. JOHNSON:  That's funny.  Because we've practiced that play quite a few times.  Eric Stephens is that guy that everybody, once they see him coming in there, they kind of assume that he's going to get the ball.  So they executed it.
We watched it throughout practice this past week watched them execute it, and work on it until they got it right.  Eric Stephens made a great pass, and Darrin Moore made a great pass, it was textbook.  They did a good job.

Q.  Saturday being this team's seventh day game in a row, what are your thoughts on play day game versus night?
D.J. JOHNSON:  I'm tired of them, man.  I'm tired of them (laughing).  No, the good thing is we're familiar with them now, we know what we have to do to get up early get pumped up and ready to go.  So that is the biggest thing.  Making sure we come out full speed and we're going to have to do that.
Personally, I miss the evening games.  I enjoy coming out and seeing the little dimmer, a little darker, and the bright lights out.  It lets me know that it's football time.  We're used to it now.  We'll go out there and make the best of it.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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