Edsall pleased with Petty’s effort in Maryland loss

November 03, 2012 | WNST Staff

Maryland Coach Randy Edsall


Opening Statement

“We didn’t have as good of a day as we would have liked defensively. We knew it was going to be tough today going into the game. We also knew that we were going to have to play great on defense to keep it a very low scoring game. We weren’t able to do that. Offensively, we struggled in the first half but then we came out better in the second half as we got a feel for Shawn [Petty] and what he could do. We did some better things in the second half but we couldn’t get the stops when we needed to. Our kids battled hard throughout. Shawn Petty did a good job considering he’s practiced seven times at quarterback. There are things that we need to work on and we will get better moving forward with him at quarterback.”


On quarterback Shawn Petty’s second-half play:

“The speed of the game was something that it took him a little bit of time to get used to. You can’t go out there and line up at this level after only seven practices and think that everything is going to happen the way you hope it will. Once he got settled in, we could see what we could do with him. He showed his poise and the game still needed to slow down for him. We still moved the ball better in the second half.”


On the defensive performance:

“We didn’t do a good enough job. That’s on us as coaches in terms of the toss sweep. That was something that was a little different for them and we weren’t really able to shut that play down. I don’t think that we tackled as well as we needed to and we got cut too much on cut blocks. We didn’t do as good of a job executing as we would have liked.”


On overcoming all the adversity:

“We have a really good group. I told them after the game that we all have to stick together. There are going to be great things that happen here. We all want these things to happen today and tomorrow, but we have to deal with the situation at hand. All we can do is come here each and every day and work as hard as we can to get better. You can see that there are a lot of things happening that are positive. We just haven’t been able to string enough of them together to get more wins when we were close.


“This group is a tight-knit group and is a group that feels good about each other. They like being around each other and when you have that kind of chemistry and that kind of camaraderie and fellowship, you’re going to be okay. Today we played right until the very end. We need to focus only on ourselves and understand that every day we are going to come in here and work to get better. I like the mentality, the attitude and the fact that when guys get an opportunity to step up they have. Brandon Ross did a good job today when he got the opportunity. Levern Jacobs got the opportunity today to play more. This group has a great feeling for each other and they want to stick together and keep grinding.”


On if the defense tried to do too much today:

“I would hope that wouldn’t be the case, but maybe human nature would have that happen. We had some guys today defensively that didn’t do their jobs who have in the past. I hope that wasn’t the case but there may have been some guys who thought that they needed to do this. When you play this type of offense, you have to be disciplined in terms of making sure you do your job. We had one situation where a guy is right there, but he goes and does something he shouldn’t have. They got a twenty yard gain when it could have been [no] gain. When you get behind then guys think maybe they can do this or that, but that’s when you make problems worse for us. I think that might have happened a couple of times for us today.


On Shawn Petty’s interception:

“That was probably the first time Shawn has seen that type of situation and so it’s a teaching moment. I thought what he could have done was to come out of his fake a little faster. When he did come out of it, he could have put the ball up in there air more instead of throwing it on a line and having the ball get tipped. When the ball gets tipped it becomes anybody’s ball. I tried to tell him that you need to see that guy and put the ball up in the air over top of him and let Stefon [Diggs] go up and get it. Don’t throw it on a line because then it gets tipped.”


On the playbook for quarterback Shawn Petty:

“We had too many [plays] in this week for him. It’s a delicate balance. Mike [Locksley] has done a great job with our quarterbacks with the situation we have been in. We want to be able to do enough to give our team the opportunity to win. But you don’t want to do too much where we are overloading Shawn [Petty]. We had plenty enough in the game plan. As we go back and look at it there are some things we can cut down on in terms of how much we will go in with. We didn’t run anything that I knew he would feel uncomfortable with.”


On Shawn Petty’s mentality:

“Shawn’s [Petty] demeanor was the same in the first quarter as it was when he threw the touchdown passes coming off the field. He is very coachable. I told Mike [Locksley] coming off the field that we know what we can do with him. I feel very good about the things that we are going to go into next week with him. I think our guys have confidence in him. We need to make sure that we do the things that we need to with him to get him more prepared. He never had the big eyes and we never saw a flustered look from him coming off the field. I thought he handled himself very well for the tough situation that he was thrust into today.”


On direct snaps to running back Wes Brown:

“We nicknamed that package ourselves as the ‘Wild crab.’ Being Maryland, rather than the wildcat, [we have] the wild crab. I thought it was productive for us. It’s a situation where, as coaches, we have to find things that will give us the best opportunity to win, and take some pressure off of Shawn [Petty] in there. I think Wes [Brown] had an ankle [injury], we will see how he is tomorrow and Monday and go from there.”


On the difficulty transitioning from linebacker to quarterback:

“It’s very difficult. This is the first time that I have experienced this with a player. To see how he went out and handled himself I thought he did the best with the situation that he was presented. You saw a kid who struggled in the first half, and he came out in the second half and played that much better. It’s a credit to our coaches to get him ready. It’s hard; having played that position myself, it’s a hard position to play if you are in the meetings all the time and out taking reps in practice [and] to come in two weeks ago and be told he was going to be playing quarterback. You have to learn the terminology, be able to command a huddle, and get the signals from the sideline. I told the team I am very proud of him for how he handled the situation. I think he earned a tremendous amount of respect from our team—which he already had—and from the opposing team. I have never had it happen before, and hope this never happens again. I hope we can keep him healthy for the next three weeks.”


Sophomore Linebacker Cole Farrand


On defending the option:

“The first part that’s hard about defending the option is preparing during the week because our scout players only have a week to prepare for the option. It’s hard to get the scout team up to speed and everyone able to do their responsibilities because the first 12 plays that you’re out there has a completely different tempo. It’s a different game when it isn’t the scout team.”


On the defense:

“Whenever Maryland defense plays, they are going to give 100 percent every play. I could tell [Georgia Tech] had a good scheme against us. We probably could have been a little better prepared, but the whole defense was giving 100 percent the entire day and you can’t ask for anything more.”


On the technical breakdowns:

“For me, I was having a hard time getting off the cut blocks. That’s definitely something I can work on in my personal game.”


On Shawn Petty:

“We had full confidence in Shawn Petty. We watched him during the week and he was looking great and you saw out there that he had great potential. He can be a great quarterback and it was his first week as a true freshman starting against Georgia Tech, one of the better teams in the ACC. We couldn’t expect anything more from him and we think he did a great job.”


On playing after the offense’s three and outs:

“That’s what we’re preparing for. I think we were conditioned enough to keep defending the option even though they were going three and out. They were using a new quarterback, so that was kind of what we were expecting.”


On the toss:

“From a personal standpoint, I know every time they ran a toss for me, I wasn’t defending it well enough and I needed to get a better feel. I wasn’t helping out my team as best as I could.”


On the future:

“We’re still going. We’re still trying to get to that bowl game. It’s a little hiccup, but we’re moving on to Clemson next week.”


Freshman Running Back Brandon Ross


On the differences between the first and second halves:

“I think just establishing the run. The offensive linemen were getting off the ball and we were getting good blocks so that opened it up for a lot of the running backs.”


On Shawn Petty’s confidence:

“I think he had confidence the whole game. Things weren’t going right in the first half. He was getting the jitters out or whatever it might be. I think in the second half we just started to gain a little bit of momentum.”


On his playing time:

“It felt good. I was just being patient and just waited for my number to be called. I was always ready.”


On what they’ll take away from the game:

“With an extra week of practice, you’re always able to get better. Shawn will be going on his second start now and I really think things are starting to come together. I think we’ll really start to come together as an offense.”


On the mood among the offense:

“It’s a down mood, but I think that’s just because we lost. We play hard every week so we’re trying not to get our heads down too much, but the goal is to just rebound from this and go beat Clemson next week.”


Freshman Wide Receiver Stefon Diggs


On if he’s satisfied with his role:

“I am always satisfied with how much time I get the ball. We have a lot of guys on the team who have the ability to make plays just as well as I can. When I do get the ball, I just try to make the most out of it. I think I had an OK day. It could have been better, but that’s why we get back into the film room and practice.”


On the last play:

“That was a good way to end the game. We ended strong and on a good note. We’ll be back next week. We had a one-on-one basically. The defender didn’t squeeze – he stuck with the post. He then squeezed a little bit and came after the corners, but I was one on one with him and went up to grab the ball and tried my best.”


On the running plays:

“I don’t think I should [get more running plays] necessarily. I think they’re doing a great job moving the ball. Brandon Ross did a great job, Petty did a great job. Everyone is doing a great job.”


Freshman Quarterback Shawn Petty


On learning terminology:

“I have picked up on most of it. Coach has been doing a good job of making sure I’ve got it down for the game.”

On what was most difficult:

“You just have to get used to the speed of the game. That’s the biggest difference. Playing my first college game when I was playing linebacker before this, the speed of the game was much faster so it took me a while to get up to speed.”


On what was different in the second half:

“I started feeling more comfortable in the second half. In the first half I was a bit antsy and the speed of the game was much faster then. I calmed down and played faster and let the game come to me.”


On his reaction when being told he’d start at quarterback:

“I was just ready to play. We play next man up so I had to be prepared to come today. Of course I can always do better and I plan on getting better. We are going to get better from here.”


On being a quarterback again:

“I always thought that I could play at the D1 level. Now I have my chance and I have to go prove it.”


On what he’ll work on moving forward:

“I need to make sure I slow down and make my reads.”


On being on the field with Stefon Diggs:

“He makes it a lot easier. You give him the ball and he makes you look good. He’s a big play-maker so you want the ball in his hands a lot.”


On the option run:

“I am really comfortable with it because it’s a lot of stuff that I did in high school. Some things came quicker than other things. It’s just going out there and playing and executing.”


Postgame Notes


Kicking Off: Maryland dropped below .500 for the first time this season with its 33-13 loss … the Terps are now 4-5 overall and 2-3 in the ACC, while Georgia Tech improved to 4-5 overall and 3-3 in the league … Georgia Tech owns a 15-6 advantage in the all-times series and has taken five of the last six from Maryland.


First-Time Starters: Entering Saturday’s game, Maryland was tied for fifth nationally with 17 players having drawn their first career start this season. The Terrapins added to that tally as Shawn Petty made his first career start at quarterback.


Three Starting QBs: With Shawn Petty drawing the start, Maryland has seen three different quarterbacks start a game this season (also Perry Hills and Caleb Rowe). It’s the first time that Maryland has had three different starting QBs in a season since 1973, when Ben Kinard, Bob Avellini and Al Neville did it.


Petty’s TD: When Shawn Petty hit Stefon Diggs for a 16-yard touchdown in the third quarter, it represented the fourth quarterback that has accounted for a touchdown this season for the Terps. Perry Hills passed for eight and ran for three, Devin Burns ran for one, and Caleb Rowe passed for two.


Diggs Gets Receiving TDs #5 & 6: Stefon Diggs caught his fifth and sixth touchdown passes of the season, passing Darrius Heyward-Bey (2006) and Sean Sullivan (1983) for the freshman receiving touchdowns record at Maryland. With 55 receiving yards, Diggs now has 721 this season. That’s also a Maryland freshman record and ranks 11th overall.


Diggs’ All-Purpose Yards: Stefon Diggs came into Saturday’s game ranked second in the ACC and ninth nationally with 169.25 all-purpose yards per game. Against Georgia Tech, he totaled 220 yards (133 kickoff return, 14 punt return, 55 receiving, 18 rushing) and is now averaging 174.9 yards per game. That currently ranks first all-time in the ACC among freshmen. Now with 1,774 on the year, Diggs also passed Torrey Smith for the Maryland freshman record and is third overall. He trails just LaMont Jordan (1,840 in 1999) and Torrey Smith (2,192 in 2009).


All-Purpose Yards by a Freshman (ACC)

Rk.   Name                      School               Year       Yds/G

1.     Sammy Watkins      Clemson             2011       171.4

2.     Stefon Diggs          Maryland            2012       169.2

3.     Duke Johnson         Miami                 2012       148.3

4.     Robert Lavette        Georgia Tech      1981       142.0

5.     Ryan Williams         Virginia Tech       2009       141.2


Defensive Notes: Cole Farrand had a career-high 10 tackles and matched his career high with six solo stops … Demetrius Hartsfield had all nine of his tackles in the first half … A.J. Francis was credited with his third field goal block of the year and also added six tackles … Darius Kilgo had a career-high seven tackles … Quinton Jefferson forced and recovered the first fumble of his career.



Georgia Tech Coach Paul Johnson


Opening statement:

“It was a good win for us. I’m proud of my team. I thought we played with some energy early, and took advantage of some possessions. We overcame a little bit of adversity when we fumbled the punt to start with. We were able to hold them pretty well defensively in the first half, and then in the second half, they did a nice job of keeping the ball. I think offensively we had four possessions in the second half. You have to give them some credit. As I told our guys, we kept alive what we’re playing for this season. We still have a chance mathematically in the league; still have a chance for a winning season and to go to a bowl game. It makes next week’s game against North Carolina the most important game of the year for us. We’ll go back and correct what’s wrong.”


On game planning for Shawn Petty:

“There is no tape on the quarterback, but they stayed pretty much within their scheme. They ran some zone-read plays and didn’t run as many bubble screens, but we knew the guy would run the ball.  In the first half, we did a better job defending it than in the second half.”


On rotating the quarterbacks:

“We weren’t sure how they were going to play defensively with the new coordinator, and we wanted to play both quarterbacks, but I felt it was important to start the game with Tevin [Washington] because he’s more important in whatever they lined up in and has a better feel for it. So we pretty much decided on Thursday to play them two series as a time, and that’s what really happened. In the second half we only had the ball four times, so it just kind of worked out. Tevin got dinged a little bit in the second half so he was done.”


On the performance of the quarterbacks:

“I thought they both did some good things. We didn’t throw the ball a lot. I think we threw the ball four times, and we should have completed all four. We missed two big games in the passing game when we dropped the ball.”


On sophomore Synjyn Days:

“His run towards our bench was a great run. It was good to see him out there. He’s been practicing better, and he’s focused. He’s a good athlete. I was proud of him, he played really well.”


Senior A-Back Orwin Smith

On Georgia Tech’s defense:

“We come in every game confident. It’s kind of how it goes. This game, we happened to get key blocks and guys on the perimeter.”


On Georgia Tech’s offense:

“The offense has to do well. Last week we didn’t do well, and we knew coming in that we had to step it up. That was the game plan and we executed it.”


On Georgia Tech’s energy:

“Just from getting ready before the first quarter, guys were amped up and getting ready. We were just amping each other up and you could tell a difference during the game.”


On having two quarterbacks:

“It’s a big advantage. At any time, either one of them could go down. We just have to make sure they both know what they’re doing in case that happens.”


Redshirt Freshman Quarterback Vad Lee

On Georgia Tech’s offense:

“We’re taking it one game at a time. When we come out ready to play, that’s when I think we’re doing our best. We were just ready to play this game. We were ready to go.”


On the success of the offense:

“Coach found a couple of plays that were very successful. We just took advantage and kept running. It was working, so we just kept grinding.”


On quarterback Tevin Washington:

“Me and Tevin, we help each other out. When I see something on the sidelines, I see the [defense] coming in hard, or the safety falling off, I let him know. He’s the one playing first. He also does the same thing for me when I’m in the game, so we try to work together. We’re going for a common goal, and that’s getting a win.”


On the team’s energy:

“We were just ready to play; we were ready to go. I think the cold had something to do with it. We were trying to stay warm. We were jumping around, I was trying to get everyone to jump around in the huddle and stuff, but that also created some energy. It got us ready to go.”


Redshirt Sophomore A-Back Synjyn Days

On his progression:

“My first week, I was just raw talent. Now I actually know what [to do]–I kind of knew what I was doing then because I played quarterback–but the actual angles and techniques you have to use to block defenders. I feel like I’ve been working.”


On preparing for Maryland:

“Making sure we finished our blocks, making sure we got the guy down. Whether we have to cut them or stand up and push them out of the way. The safeties and corners weren’t coming down too hard so I stayed up most of the time to block.”


On the team’s energy:

“I felt like it was a new attitude. Before the BYU game, after six games, we sat down and had a meeting and said, ‘This is the second half of the season. It’s the last six games.’ We’re 2-1 for our second half of the season. We’re trying to make it to a bowl game and play for the ACC Championship. We’re all excited for that.”


Redshirt Junior Defensive End Euclid Cummings

On preparing for Maryland:

“It was different preparing. We actually watched high school footage on [Shawn Petty]. I felt like that was different, but I thought we prepared well.”


On the team’s motivation:

“In defensive meetings, we were just focused on playing for each other. Our season has gone down a rocky road so we wanted to make sure we played for each other and get the ‘W.’ It didn’t matter if they’re playing the first-string or the fifth-string quarterback.”