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Murray State Coach Chris Hatcher Previews Louisville

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Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Murray State head coach Chris Hatcher -- who seems like he might me the nicest guy on the planet -- recently previewed Louisville and talked briefly about his team's season-opening 73-26 win over Union College.

Here's the full video, followed by some written out highlights for those of you who are boycotting YouTube:


--Some of the younger guys had some big eyes in the season-opener, and that's a little bit of a problem because obviously we're going into a much bigger venue this weekend. I them after the game that they're going to have to mature in a hurry because we have to be able to count on them for reps.

--We're 1-0 and we feel like that's all we can be at this point.

--This Louisville team is much better than the one we played several years ago (2011). That was coach Strong's first year, and he did a great job of building that program up. Now they're being coached by, in my mind, one of the best coaches there is in college football, bar none. You can say what you want to say, he's one of the best, there's no doubt about it.

--I called it after watching them beat Miami: this is a team that's going to have a chance to play for the ACC title if they stay healthy. They're either the best team or the second best team in that conference. They were really, really impressive.

--I knew we already had our work cut out for us before I saw them play Monday night. They didn't go into triple overtime or get into a big fight like I'd hoped they would and have half their team suspended. We just have to go up there and play the best football we can play, and be a better team than we were last Thursday.

--We have young players that are very exciting, and that's both encouraging and worrying heading into a game like this. It's a cause for concern making that huge jump from FCS to FBS, but hopefully we handle it well.

--I don't think a lot of people understand how much of a jump it is playing a team like this. They've got 85 scholarships to our 63. You look at their No. 94 (Lorenzo Mauldin) who's a defensive end slash outside linebacker, and he's bigger than everybody on our team. Their running back is 240-pounds and ran for 143 yards against Miami, and Miami's pretty good.

--We've just got to try and contain them, not let them get a big play early, and then hope that they make some errors. That's what you have to hope for in a game like this.

--We're going to keep rotating three running backs for at least the next couple of games. Whoever has the best week of practice is going to be the guy who gets the first carry on Saturday. All of them played well against Union.

--How your offensive line and defensive lines play is going to determine who wins ever week. It's a big challenge for us against Louisville because of both their size and depth. They can run in guy after guy and they're all the same size. In games like this, the most difficult place for us is in the trenches.

--I'm always excited to play, and I'm excited for our kids to get to have this experience. I always say these games are all fun until toe meets leather, and then you want to get your paycheck and get back home. I know there are upsets every week, and we've been preparing for Louisville since Friday and are going up there with the mindset of putting our players in the best position they can be in to be successful, just like we do every week. We're going up there to try and win the game, that's our goal. But there's another part of you that says, if you don't, did you go out there and play hard? Did you have a good time like we talk about every week? Did you know your assignments? Did you improve in the areas that we highlighted after the Union game? To me, those are the important things when you play a game against a team from a level that's higher than you.

--Maybe Louisville will be a little tired after a short week or maybe they'll be a little down emotionally after such a big game. You never know. That's the reason you go play the games every week.