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Oregon Football

Mario Cristobal postgame vs. Iowa State

January 2, 2021

Oregon closed out the season in a manner that left much to be desired. Iowa State didn’t do anything special, but the Ducks discipline and sloppy play proved too much to overcome. 

Mario Cristobal spoke with the media over Zoom after the game.

Opening statement

“Obviously, we didn't play up to our standard. Certainly, it is a game of execution and a critical situation. We didn't coach well enough or didn't execute well enough. We take losses as a team. We don't point fingers. That's it.”

On time of posession and offense’s effectiveness

“We only got one possession the first quarter. They were able to sustain some long drives and were moving the ball well offensively in the first half. And scored some points and negated ourselves a touchdown with the penalty.”

“We gave up the ball a couple of times, and the defense was on there for a long period of time. Spent a lot of time on the field, and fought their tails off to give us an opportunity on several occasions to get the ball back. But we weren't able to execute and get that done.”

On way the game unfolded

You make your own breaks. We have to do a better job coaching it. We have to do a better job coaching ball security. We have to do a better job making sure that we avoid penalties. But it is a game of execution. Things you can't compromise in a game like this against a top 10 team -- you can't compromise your physicality, your execution, your focus, and your effort. And certainly, when you turn over the ball like we did, hard to overcome.”

On Iowa State kickoff recovery

”That's not D.J.'s [Johnson] fault. He was trying to get it, and on the sideline, all of us were trying to get him to get away from the ball. He was trying to judge it, so that's not his fault.”

On quarterback play

“Thought he (Tyler Shough) had some good moments. Looking at him statistically. 7-9, 79 yards a long of 20. Had the one pick at the end where we were trying to make something happen. Thought he did some good stuff.”

“I thought Anthony [Brown] did some good stuff as well. We played both of them, because we felt that they can both give us a chance to win the game. And there was enough clarity to start Tyler, which is what we did. There was also enough of good play by Anthony where we felt it merited him playing, and that's what we did.”

On Shough and Brown’s ability to get in a rhythmn

We went into the game with the same type of packages for Anthony and short yardage, and some 4-minute stuff. But we did determine that we were going to put him in in the second quarter to play. He developed a hot hand, so we stayed with the hot hand. That was what transpired, nothing else.”

On decision to punt on fourth down 14 points toward the end of the third quarter

”We thought this ball was going to give us a fourth and one and a half; one, one and a half. And it looked like a long three, and we felt that we could pin them deep and get the ball back. Thought that our defense was trying to get its feet underneath itself. So we did.”

On third downs

“Certainly, they outplayed us and they outcoached us on third down. They certainly did. I think two of them were actually turnovers. But we've been good on third down. “

On excitement for this offseason

”The offseason is what we're excited about, the ability to develop from a strength and conditioning standpoint. So many guys played football for the first time as starters, the new offensive line, quarterbacks, couple of wide receivers. The receivers for the most part were veterans.”

“Linebackers, couple of guys that were banged up and didn't get to play. Obviously, Justin Flowe and the Dontae Manning’s of the world. We expect Cam McCormick to be back really healthy. We're welcoming the best class that we've ever had in the history of our program as well, and 13 of those guys will be enrolling early and will be on our campus within a week or so.”

On what the next couple of weeks look like 

“First thing is meeting with the seniors and figuring out what the next step for them is. You have to feed them the information that you get from the NFL Advisory Committee. If they want a firm opinion by us, our staff, we always give it to them and they've been great with that.”

“The players will go home for about two and a half weeks. We spent the holidays in Eugene, so they never got a break. They're going to go home. Classes do kick in on Monday via remote. Then our freshmen, our newcomers, some are already in town, and the rest come in next week. And they will come in. They will isolate for about six, seven days, whatever it may be, test, then begin the off-season program.”

On Mykael Wright’s special teams fumble

He has his back to the returner because he's locked up with the guy on coverage, and the returner is yelling the call word for them to know, hey, this is a situation where I'm now up on the ball. Everyone out.”

“And Mykael being locked up with the opponent just didn't allow him to hear it, because he was giving great effort on the play. What happens is when those punts are short and the returner has to come up to field that ball, if the communication isn't clear enough, that happens. So all about communication.”

On quarterback situation entering offseason 

”So a lot of different situations. Talk about them, try to settle them now, there's no shot at doing that, not even close. You have a guy who's a sophomore and a guy who's a senior. You have guys that are granted extra years. There's a lot of moving parts to this thing as well. We have good players on campus and we have an elite quarterback coming in; probably on campus right now. There's a lot of moving parts to this, but we feel confident in the quarterback room.”

Tags: Football, Oregon
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