Patterson Holds Weekly Presser

Gary Patterson

Nov. 26, 2013

FORT WORTH, Texas -- TCU football coach Gary Patterson held his weekly news conference Tuesday in the Four Sevens Team Room.

The Horned Frogs host Baylor on Saturday at 2:30 p.m. in a sold-out game at Amon G. Carter Stadium.

Included below are excerpts from Patterson's meeting with the media.

Opening Statement ...
"First off, Happy Thanksgiving. (Baylor) Coach (Art) Briles and his staff have done a magnificent job and are having a great season. We're not where we want to be. Outside of the Texas game, we've been a score away in the last five or six minutes of each game from having a different outcome."

On how the players have changed since the start of the season ...
"We've missed two starting defensive ends since the start of the season in Devonte Fields and Matt Anderson. We've lost David Johnson, a starting defensive tackle, and Joel Hasley, a starting linebacker. There's also two starting offensive linemen (Tayo Fabuluje and Michael Thompson) missing and (tight end) Griffin Gilbert. Waymon James hasn't played much of the year. For everything that went on, I felt like the kids kept fighting. The last two weeks we could have handled it a lot different. Looking at two weeks ago at Iowa State and a week ago at Kansas State, they played their tails off. As a head coach, you couldn't ask for anything more."

On how Baylor has played on defense and special teams ...
"They play really well on defense. They are at the top of the league in almost everything. (Baylor defensive coordinator) Coach (Phil) Bennett is doing a great job. They also play well on special teams. They've had some big returns and are causing people problems in all areas. Except for the hiccup last week, that's why they keep beating people and by big margins."

On how Casey Pachall has matured going into his final TCU game ...
"I was walking up the steps at Kansas State and heard a guy call him a few names, and he just looked and smiled and kept walking. After he broke his arm, he came to my office that Monday and said he wanted to travel with the team and work on scout team. You can't measure the positive aspect of that. I'll give (Oklahoma head coach) Bob Stoops a lot of credit. During pre-game this year, he asked me about him and then went to our side and shook his hand."

On how the last couple TCU teams can be compared to its BCS years ...
"If you look at the Rose Bowl group, the senior class went 36-3 in their final three years. We had 27 seniors. We had seven basically playing last season and about six this year. You put them together and you're not even half that. Baylor has 18 or 19 seniors, and you can see that leadership on the field. Teams go through those phases, and the idea is to not have to rebuild over too many years. I knew there was going to be a transition period, and there has been. You're playing with 55 kids and you're within 10 points of winning four or five more ballgames."

On this year's seniors ...
"There's a lot of character here. It makes you want to stay up late to game plan and give them the best opportunity to win as many games as they can. You see the tears in their eyes after the Kansas State game. It was the same as when Utah beat us in 2008 for the right to play in the Sugar Bowl. I told them I was sorry because it was my job to help them win one of those games. You can't blame them for the effort, especially in a hostile environment. Everybody tells you how hard it is to play at Iowa State, or Kansas State, or Oklahoma State, but this team could have tied it up with Oklahoma State trailing 17-10 in the fourth quarter.

On the best way to contain Baylor's high-powered offense ...
"If you look at the last game against Baylor, we were able to hold the ball and move it. They only had 55 plays. They run the ball really well, so you have to be able to stop it. Oklahoma State was able to, and it turned into a throwing game. You make a wrong step and a 15-yard pass turns into a 75-yarder."

On TCU cornerback Jason Verrett ...
"His story is well documented. He's a Walter Camp All-American and will graduate in December. His intelligence and football IQ is unbelievable, and scouts love that."

On how he can best summarize what this season means in the big picture ...
"It's been an interesting year. We've learned a lot. We are getting the kinks out of the new stadium and it's a great time to be a Horned Frog and live in Fort Worth. The cool thing about seeing Baylor do it is that it's not the traditional power. It raises the level for everybody. Every university has the chance to win a conference title. It's like with the SEC and how they are trying to improve their perception for the whole league. If we hadn't played LSU and we win in overtime versus West Virginia, we are already bowl eligible. I think we found out that when we play at a high level like that first game of the season, you have a chance to go compete with those guys and you can get physical. There's a formula for success out there."



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