Sept. 4, 2010
U-M coach quotes courtesy of the Michigan Sports Network postgame show
Player quotes from the Michigan locker room
Michigan Video: Postgame Press Conference
Michigan Audio: Coach Rich Rodriguez | Sophomore QB Denard Robinson | Sophomore RB Vincent Smith
Connecticut Audio: Coach Randy Edsall | Fifth-year Senior QB Zach Frazer | Senior/junior WR Kashif Moore
Michigan Head Coach Rich Rodriguez
On the game ... "I'm really proud of the guys. They stayed focused over the last nine months. We had a great training camp. I could tell last night looking in their eyes they were really excited to play. The crowd was just terrific -- 113,000 -- unbelievable. It got our players excited too if you're a recuirt and you see that -- 113,000 with a great atmosphere -- I would think that you'd want to come to Michigan."
On sophomore quarterback Denard Robinson ... "He threw the ball well, and he made great decisions. There were about 5-6 when we watch the film, he'll want to have back. But he was composed and poised the whole day. He was in command, and we ran him. We have other quarterbacks that can play too, but Denard certainly took the lead today and did a great job."
On Robinson's 20-plus carries ... "It really depends on how they play us. He probably ran more today than we'd like. I think that's a little bit much, but at the same time, he can handle it. He's bigger and stronger, but there were probably a few times that he ran when he could have given it up -- and vice versa. I think he'll keep learning from that, but he can handle it."
On Michigan's ball possession ... "We had a couple really long drives, including the first one. We were really poised up front. I thought our front five did a great job handling them -- getting a hat on a hat. We ran north and south. We had a couple runs that we bounced a little too soon maybe, but for the most part, we ran north and south and got positive yards."
On the uncertainty surrounding the defense entering the season ... "Our guys played hard, and we have to be an active defense. We've got to tackle well, which we did for the most part today. We let a few big plays get out, and they had one big play. But for the most part, I thought our young guys did pretty well for the first time playing."
On the youth of the defense ... "I was really nervous, and coach [Greg] Robinson and coach Gibby [Tony Gibson], the secondary coach, were really nervous with all those young guys back there. We got another guy nicked up. But they keep playing hard. I thought our front did a good job. We got some good pressure from [Jonas] Mouton and Craig Roh. Overall, they kept things in front of them. They didn't allow big runs."
Connecticut Head Coach Randy Edsall
On the game ... "It was a game where we really didn't help ourselves in certain situations. We left way too many opportunities on the field offensively, defensively and a few special teams, but offensively you can't drop as many balls as we dropped. We had a chance to go in and make it a seven-point ballgame and you fumble the ball. Again, it's little things, technique things like get the ball on your outside arm and cover it up when you're down in that area. Effort doesn't really mean anything, it's all about winning. We came out here to win and defensively we had situations when Denard Robinson was just a very good player and third down, if we could have just done a better job on third down, we would have gave ourselves a better opportunity. There are a lot of things that we'll take from this and work to get better, but like I said it's just disappointing that we didn't have a better performance than we did today."
On Michigan's size being a factor ... "I don't think so. If we just play the techniques and do the things that we're supposed to. I mean, when we played well we did a pretty good job. One thing is that Denard Robinson is going to make people look bad. That guy is an extra running back, back there. We made some early adjustments and made some adjustments in the second half and really tried to take the ball out of his hands. When we did, we got burnt because we put our eyes in the wrong place in a play-action pass and I think the backside guy didn't get the call. If you just do those little things, but you have to give him credit. He's an outstanding athlete."
On this Michigan team being more of a Rich Rodriguez type of offense ... "Rich's thing has always been having a running quarterback and he's always been a guy that wants to run the football and do some things and Denard Robinson can do those things for them. I think he's got the guy in place now that he's looking for at quarterback to do the things he wants to do offensively and then they can do enough things in the passing game to hurt you. They're a good football team and they have some pretty good talent."
On this Michigan team being different than last year's team ... "It's a totally different team because of the quarterback. It's a totally different team. I would say that Rich would feel very, very comfortable with this guy at quarterback because this is what Rich did when we played him at West Virginia with Pat White. I'm not saying that he's Pat White because Pat was pretty good, but with time I think that this young man will have a chance to become a very good quarterback."