Sept. 21, 2002
Cal Head Coach Jeff Tedford
General comments on the game
I thought our defense played very well. You're never going to stop that offense. I thought they (Cal's defense) contained it very well and gave us a chance to win.
Early on, I think we had to get used to some of the things they (Airforce) were doing. I thought they did a nice job on defense. I'll take the blame for a lot of that. I probably didn't call a very good game. I need to be able to put our kids in a better position to be successful...We probably should have gone in with some different types of running schemes. Anytime something like this happens, there have to be answers and it's not just with the players. I'll take this one on my shoulders as far as that is concerned.
On Cal's dropped passes
They (dropped passes) plagued us significantly. You can't drop the ball and expect to beat a good team like Air Force. I have confidence in our guys that that won't happen again. There's no need to panic. I think they'll make plays. Today was just not their day. They didn't make plays throwing the football. I thought Kyle (Boller) threw some nice balls today. We just have to catch the football better.
On Cal's penalties
It's very concering that we had some penalties today in bad situations. We were hitting people out of bounds and there is no excuse for that. There will be times when you flinch up front because you're trying to get a jump, but it's unacceptable when you are hitting someone out of bounds. I know they (the players) are trying to give a lot of effort, but you have to play smart at the same time. We need to learn from (penalties like that); we can't allow them to happen.
On Cal's last drive
I learned that they're not going to give up. They kept in there and kept balling. Kyle (Boller) kept throwing darts and at the end, Jonathan (Makonnen) made a big play. The look in their eyes was never one of disbelief; it was always one of encouragement. I'm happy that they put that drive together and gave us a chance to tie the game. It just didn't work out with the two-point play. I was pleased with the drive.
On Kyle Boller
I think Kyle played well. I might have put Kyle in some bad situations by getting plays in too late to him. There was some miscommunication in the huddle a few times. I think Kyle is very, very tough and I thought he threw some good balls. He threw the ball with authority today. I think his confidence is there and he'll get better each week.
PK Mark Jensen
The fact that you're getting a lot of opportunities, but it's a catch 22 because it's at the expense of the offense because they're not executing when they get down the field.
On the blocked kick
I'm not sure (if a hand got on it). It could have been that I was a little slow on the kick. Someone told me we weren't quite at seven yards, we'll watch the film
I'm not watching the line of scrimmage. I'm supposed to mark it off the line but once we get up there...
Records aside, that's great and all, but the point of being out here is winning and executing and that's something we didn't do today, we fell a little short. You have to really come into this game. I think we showed a lot of heart and poise today. We battled till the end and gave ourselves an opportunity to be there.
LB Marcus Daniels
We're a totally different team. As far today, there were a couple blown assignments. You have to wrap up, at different times the guy that made the tackle weren't wrapped with efficiency. Guys missed a lot of tackles.
On QB Chance Harridge
He hosed them. He keeps the linebackers in check and hosed the ball. He's a very smart quarterback, he's shifty. He leads off his blocks well.
There comes a point in time when guys have to get out to the cut blocks and that hurt us today massively. Guys have to do their assignment, we need more guys to the ball.
DE Tully Banta-Cain
The measure of a great team is how they bounce back from a loss. We have to keep our heads up. We let this one slip away from us but we can't get down about it. We have a lot of games left to play. We have to keep getting after it.
On making sure teammates don't think, 'here we go again'
Keeping the positive outlook for the rest of the season and knowing that you can't win them all. We've lost before in the past so we know what it's like to loose. We just have to put this one behind us and look forward to the next game.
I felt that we responded well for the most part of the game, we were down and we never gave up. We believed the whole game we were going to come back and win it. Unfortunately things didn't go our way. They ran a real unorthodox offense and defense, something we weren't used to. We'll probably never see an option team like that again. It's a tough one to swallow.
Air Force Head Coach Fisher DeBerry
General comments on the game
What you saw today was a very great, great college football game. Two teams that never gave up...they've been averaging 50 points a game. Our defense did a tremendous job keeping them out of the end zone right up until the very end of the game. Our offense showed a lot of grit and determination.
Their offense would never go away. They had a great quarterback. Unfortunately for them, their receivers dropped a lot of passes.
I was proud of both sides of the football for us. Our quarterback (Chance Harridge) - whenever it came time for him to step up, he stepped up. These guys are going to do a great job representing your nation in the coming years. I'm very, very proud of these guys.
I'm so proud of our team. I think it's the first time in Falcon football history that we've beaten teams from the Big 10 and the Pac-10 in the same year.
On Cal's performance
They are for real - no question about it. That quarterback (Kyle Boller) is a fine, fine player. We did get to him a few times. I thought their defense played very well, especially in the first half. Today was a day the defenses stood up.
On if Air Force should receive a Top 25 ranking
I have no concern where we are ranked right now. I'll be very concerned where we are ranked in November.
Air Force Players
QB Chance Harridge
We didn't turn the ball over in the second half and we got it into the endzone, and whenever you do that, you put pressure on your opponents office to score. I tip my hat off to our defense because they just held one of the top scoring offenses in the country to just 21 points. Without the defensive effort today, we would have had no chance to win it in the second half.
I was heated after our first offensive play. It was something that we talked about all week long ... you can't turn the ball over inside the five-yard line like Michigan State did vs. Cal. That was something that we haven't done all season - every time that we've been in the red zone we've scored up until today. When that happens, especially early in the game, you feel a momentum swing. It would have been a completely different ball game if we had gotten on the board early, instead of playing catch up.
In the second half, we started clicking. It started clicking on our last drive of the first half ... until we fumbled it again. When we saw how it worked then, we realized that this was our chance to do something. We quit trying to run outside, we quit trying to run sweeps and we just started running the triple option right at them ... and they just couldn't stop it. We ran right at them for the entire second half of the game.
Cal played really well today. This is probably one of the classiest group of guys that I have ever played against in my life. No trash talking and they would say things like 'good play, good hit, good run' and they would try to help you up after the play. I don't feel that Cal was complacent with their No. 23 ranking. They weren't pointing the finger late in the game. I was thoroughly impressed with the way that Cal handled themselves.
DB Jeff Overstreet
On breaking up the two-point conversion at the end of the game
They went into motion on the goal line play, which kind of threw us off. Wes Crawley called 'banjo,' that's where you switch men and his man ran straight at me. He ran an out route and the quarterback's eyes were looking straight at number 20 (Joe Igber), he threw that ball to him and I just put my hand in front of it. Igber is a great back so I figured that they would get the ball into his hands. I expected them to throw the fade because they were picking on me the whole game and they have some guys who can catch that. With a team like Cal, you got to expect a play-action pass or something like that.
Cal played really hard, I thought they were a really good team. We went into the game expecting Joe Igber to get the ball a little bit more, but he didn't. They tried to get the ball to No. 8 (LaShaun Ward) and a couple of other guys. They have a really good receiving core. They were a very classy team. Sometimes, especially in our conference, the other team is talking trash the entire game. Cal didn't say anything to me ... nothing at all.