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Everything Jeff Brohm said after Louisville’s win over Boston College

The new Cardinal head coach is 4-0.

Louisville v Indiana Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images

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Louisville Head Coach Jeff Brohm

(Opening Statement)

“We knew Boston College was going to give us a challenge. They wake up our players when they almost beat Florida State at home last week. Because of that, we practiced well with the sense of urgency needed to come out and win. To be quite honest, it starts at Card March. We had a great showing. Our kids love that. It makes them more ready to play. We came out firing on a lot of cylinders, scoring points and being productive. The defense started pretty hot early on, but of course a few things cooled down after that. I am really proud of the start we had. A lot of guys made some good plays. A few other guys stepped up and made more plays than they have in the past. So, we are going to have to continue to do that. Certain guys are going to have to continue to merge, continue to work hard. You never know when your time is going to come about. On defense, while there’s some good things, there are plenty of things to shore up. So, it gave us an opportunity, as coaches, to see what we can do to help them perform more efficiently all the time and then as players, maybe have to play harder. Maybe, we have to do this or that. There are just things we have to shore up to move forward to some really tough football games coming up.”

(About Plummer looking poised in the pocket)

“I thought it was a great day for Jack (Plummer). He had a really good week of practice. I say all the time that this guy works at it. He puts in the time. He is committed. He wants to do well. Sometimes, he wants to do so well, I think he presses. So, we just worked on relaxing and trusting what you do in practice every day and throw with conviction and standing on balance and trusting their protection. In my opinion, not only did he play great, he made throws up the field. These were not little screens, these were vertical shots down the field, hitting them on the money. The receivers ran precise routes, and we had good protection. But I thought Jack was as sharp as he’s ever been. “

(About different situational plays put into the offense)

“Well that is one (play) we put in. You know, my first year at Purdue, it helped us win the bowl game. We scored right before the half and kicked a field goal to win by three. We ran it one time before. We practice it once a week. We have a selection of trick plays. Our guys love them, love practicing them. Sometimes, we ask for their input. We want to make it fun. I am not going to lie, my family’s been on me because I haven’t run many trick plays in four games. That was kind of the perfect opportunity. Believe it or not, there is a strategy to that play. You can’t really run it with under 20 seconds because you are really going to get some yards hopefully and get in range but you need a little time to maybe get in field goal range or get a touchdown so, 35 or whatever we had it on was actually perfect. We executed it to perfection, got down to field goal range but we took a penalty, but we ended up scoring a touchdown and that was key. I think they are fun to do, and our players enjoy them and we practice it once a week because as coaches we don’t want to screw it up. We have a handful every week or at least on the table ready to use. It is just a matter of whether I get to them.”

(On the balanced offense)

“These guys work hard, I’m proud of that simple fact. When there’s one ball and you’ve got multiple weapons, I can’t predict where the ball is going to throw, you’ve got to kind of gain the confidence of your quarterback. You’ve got to just stick with it. You never know when your number is going to be called. I think we’ve got a collection of receivers that all work really hard, all can make plays, they just continue to work and stick to the grind. We’re going to have to use them as we progress to some really tough football games, certain guys are going to have to emerge, nd I think they will as long as they continue to do that. We’ve got some running backs – yes, Jawhar [Jordan] is special and the other running backs run hard, they do a really good job. You take that, and you take an offensive line that should get more credit, because they’ve been consistent, they get protection, they open up holes… I just think it’s a great team effort. These guys work hard together. There are no egos. Everybody wants to do well, every week. Some days you might get a lot of touches, other days maybe not as much, but you’ve got to continue to work, because that’s how you build a great football team and I like the effort that we’ve had to this point.”

(You had an offensive lineman do a cartwheel today, what was the strategy behind that?)

“We wanted him to do the splits, but he couldn’t quite get that, so he went with the cartwheel, the play actually didn’t get open, we were hoping it would, but it obviously didn’t distract anybody other than our fans, maybe. But we scrambled – actually we fumbled the ball and we scrambled, but you know what, that’s a play where you just kind of split the tackle out, you sneak the tight end at the tackle position, hope to get him down the middle and they pointed to the tight end, so they recognized – that’s a smart football team – they recognized it. With the tackle, each week we change up what acrobatic jump or splits or sprint he’s going to do, I didn’t know what was coming, so I’m looking forward to seeing it on film.”

(On Jack Plummer, was that as sharp as you’ve seen him?)

“He was sharp. Quarterback is a unique position, you’ve just got to be able to relax and have poise and be able to do everything you’re normally able to do in practice, when you know you’re not going to be tackled, in the game when you could be tackled and hit really hard. I think mentally, you’ve just got to be able to block things out, so you just kind of train it and you’ve got to retrain it. It’s like a golf swing, you’ve just got to keep retraining it and retraining it. He’s played a lot of football and today he was sharp. These were vertical shots up the field, on the money, threw with great poise, trusted the protection, so yes, it was a great performance and now the bar has been raised for him so he’s got to continue to try to that more often, be as consistent as he can – and yes, we ask the quarterback to do a lot. Now we’ve some good weapons around him to help and we’ve got to make sure them, but it was a really, really good performance by him.”

On who Jamari Thrash reminds him of)

“Well, we have had a lot good ones you know just as a coach and I have played with a lot of good ones. I think he is consistent, I don’t think he has missed one practice or rep since he has been here. Now, that is a little bit of luck being able to stay healthy, but he doesn’t. He wants to be out there and get better. He is a team player, when he is not getting ball, he is not ‘hey, why am I not getting the ball?’, not at all. He just continues to work, and he has experience, this is his fifth year, his last year and he wants to go out with a bang. He knows we are going to try and throw the ball and throw the ball vertically because that will help people at the next level. We are not just a bubble screen, throw the ball behind the line of scrimmage team. We want to throw the ball vertical and let those guys show NFL scouts. Like I said, it is a good collection of receivers, and they all work hard and they all have talent. Of course he (Jamari) has gotten a lot of balls and he made some big ones today. I think consistency is what you are trying to build with all your guys. I think if these guys stay healthy and keep working that we can continue to improve.”

(On playing a road game on a short week)

“I think you need to have the right balance. Do you want to get a lot of work in and get them prepped, yes but you also want to let their bodies heal. Mentally prepare them a little more early in the week and have a little less physical practice because really you want them fresh for the game. I still remember being in the Schellenberger era where physicality every week was used and occasionally, he would pull back but these guys work year-round now and we didn’t do that when I played. They put in a lot of time and effort. You can mentally prepare them and get their body right and then get enough work in. I just want them to be fresh come Friday night and understand we are going to have to play our best game in order to win on the road at NC State.”

(On whether they played a complete game today against BC)

“Well, it is hard to play a complete one. I thought in the first half we did some really good things, I mean really good things so that was great to see. The second half when you have the lead and trying to work the clock and the defense is up and down a little bit, it was not as smooth as I would like so I wouldn’t call it a perfect game. But you know what, when you play conference games you got to find a way to win and if we can start like that in every game, I will take that for sure. It is just about continuing to fix a few of the things that pop up every time we play. How can we not let those repeat again, how can we help put the players in the best position to succeed because I think it is on everybody. It is on me, it is on our assistant coaches. I talk about it a lot, no, we have to do things better, we have to help them. Their job is hard enough so we have to help them and figure these things out and not just say, ‘we need to make the tackle’. We have to look at what alignment we are in and what they are looking at. We have to continue to evaluate and analyze but I think our coaches work hard and give great effort and our players do the same thing. We just have to continue to work through it, this is football and every game you just try and score more points than the other team.”

Running Back Jawhar Jordan

(On what the key is to breaking tackles and generating yards after contact)

Jordan: “It’s all about consistency, just staying consistent with it. I feel like I have a lot to prove. I feel like I’m one of the best backs in the nation, and I just want to come out here every week and prove it.”

(On the amount of explosive plays and if this was the first game the offense was running on all cylinders)

Jordan: “Honestly, we definitely left a lot of meat on the bone. We could’ve done a little bit better in my opinion, but that’s what we were prepared to do: explosive plays. And for the most part, we did that.

(On why he feels like he has a lot to prove)

Jordan: “I just feel like I’m still underrated and honestly, I like it like that. I want to be the underdog. I want to keep working. I’m going to keep staying down and keep proving myself week by week.”

(On the vibe on the sideline when the offense is scoring consistently)

Jordan: “It’s fun, but that’s what we expect to do. Honestly, we just expect to score points so it’s fun but at the same time, we already expect to do it.”

(On where he thinks Louisville should be ranked on a national scale)

Jordan: “Honestly, we don’t pay too much attention to that. We take it week by week. Boston College played a great game against Florida State, but each week is different, so we just came out here and did what we had to do.”

(On what being part of Coach Brohm’s offense has been like)

Jordan: “At first, I heard all about Coach Brohm passing the ball, but I wasn’t too worried about that. I feel like I can be a threat in the passing game as well, so that’s something I look forward to and just keep making plays.”

(On the fake kneeldown and if the offense has been working it for a while)

Jordan: “Yes, sir. We practice it every week, so we finally got to unleash it and show our special plays.”

(On the importance of having a consistent game where they held a big lead and maintained it)

Jordan: “Playing the ACC opponents, it’s always important to come out with a victory, so we just keep working and respect all opponents, but every game is different.”

(On the amount of confidence the win gives the team going to NC State on the road next week)

Jordan: “We’re going to keep our confidence but stay humble at the same time. NC State is going to be a great opponent. Any time you get those ACC matchups, you know it’s going to be a four-quarter battle, so we’re just going to come out and prepare for them. It’s going to be a good one.”

(On how the explosive plays in the passing game affect his running lanes and ability to impact the game)

Jordan: “Those guys (Ahmari Huggins-Bruce and Jamari Thrash) are explosive. It’s a blessing to have a great offensive line first of all, and then guys who can make plays with the deep balls and even the short passes. They can turn a ten-yard hitch into a 50-yard run, so it’s a blessing to have those receivers.”

Quarterback Jack Plummer

(On what made him feel so poised today)

Plummer: “I don’t know, I just feel like I was going out there and playing. Our guys were getting open and I was able to sit back there and the line did a good job of blocking, so it was a combination of a lot of things. But I think it’s part of my game: when I get into a groove, I feel like I’m pretty dangerous.”

(On the confidence going forward for the offense)

Plummer: “I think we saw glimpses of that in all the games we’ve played where we’ve put stretches of football together as an offensive side of the ball where it looked really good. Just to be able to do that for almost the game felt really good, and I think we just have to build off of that. There’s obviously stuff to clean up but it’ll be good for us coming into next week.”