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Boston College 17, Northern Illinois 14: Eagles Postgame Quotables

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"We just knew we were going to play both. It came with what it came with. They both did some nice things. They both had some tough moments." -Steve Addazio

Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

Steve Addazio Opening Statement...

"It's great to be 3-1.We beat a pretty good football team. Certainly on defense they're a pretty good football team. I'd say that's about as hard of getting a win as I've been around in a long time, just really hard. You've got to give the credit to the kids. They keep battling. They keep hammering away. They never gave up. Every bit of adversity that would strike was unwavering to the coaches and to the players and that is where my hat's off. My hat's off to that. There's something to that. That means something. That's just not a little thing. It's a pretty big thing. We made it as hard as you can possibly make it on six, seven, eight different fronts. But we came away with a win against a pretty good football team, a pretty tough football team, a pretty physical football team. We did some good things obviously in there. There were some signs of life offensively. We played good on defense again. At times our special teams looked great. Then of course we kicked that thing about fifteen yards and had it come back to us for a touchdown."

"We took a hit today on about three of our running backs and our tight end. At the end of the game we had one running back. That's it. There was a pound of flesh exhausted in that game. Give credit to them they are a tough physical team. You saw that last week. No one was delusional. We knew that was the way that was going to be."

"We found a way to win. We battled. We fought. We rushed for 234 yards. We had 326 yards of offense. On defense we held them to 153 yards which is fantastic. They rushed for 72 yards."

"We've got to grow. We've got to get better. We've got to get healthy. I'm a little concerned about that right now. We've taken a lot, a lot of hits now in the last couple of weeks to an already very, very young football team. We're very young. We're a very young team that likes football. That plays hard and grinds."

Addazio on using two QBs...

"We just knew we were going to play them both. It came with what it came with. They both did some nice things. They both had some tough moments. You're talking about guys that have no playing experience. It's one thing, with no disrespect to other positions, to put a guy in at running back or wide receiver. It's another thing to quarterback. So those guys went in there and I thought they battled. They really did do some really good things. Then they had some moments when you're looking and like- oh my God tell me this isn't going to happen here. That's what happens when you play guys that don't have any experience. At that position it's hard."

"I'm going to come in tomorrow morning and we're going to look at everything. We're going to really evaluate it hard. I'm encouraged. Nothing hit me in the face. Just looking at it for what it was. There were some good things and some bad things by both guys. Nothing hit me in the face. I guess all the options are really on the table right now. We're trying to do the best we can to let each guy mature. That's all we're trying to do."

"You're constantly in your mind saying to yourself- you've got a strong defense, play your defense and don't turn the ball over. People saying you're playing not to lose. No. It's playing to win. It's trying to play to the strengths that you have. You've got to be careful as you witnessed. We threw a play action pass early in the game in the first half that went 80. That's about as safe a play action pass as you can throw. We threw it and it went 80."

"I don't want to paint it like we don't have ability because we do. We're just young. There are margins for error and you're trying to reduce them. If you're defense isn't playing well then I think you take a different approach but when you're playing as good as they're playing that's what you do."

Addazio on the running backs...

"Jon Hilliman ran great today. John Hilliman ran like John Hilliman should be running. I hadn't seen that in the first three games. You know we challenged him. We challenged all the running backs. They responded. He ran like a running back. We could have used that a week ago. He ran like a guy that's a runner. He's running people over. He's breaking tackles. He was physical. I'm proud of the way he played. Tyler Rouse ran really hard. They all ran hard."

"I challenged them. I feel like we have really good running backs. I didn't feel like we were anywhere near our potential. I didn't like what I saw. At all. I liked what I saw today. That's our running backs right there. We grow off of that. We have to play like that week in and week out. It's a tough, physical game."

Steven Daniels on the final defensive stand...

"That’s why we play the game. Every defense should want the game in their hands and we’re very confident in our defense and will continue to be."

Daniels on the change in the defense this year...

"I think it’s our chemistry. During the spring and summer workouts, we just kept getting tighter and tighter [as a unit]. We just learned how to depend on each other and we’re going to continue to get closer and get better."

John Johnson on the defense's play given the offense's youth...

"I think there’s definitely a bigger emphasis on creating turnovers and even scoring on turnovers. But besides that, we have to go out and play our defense every game."

Johnson on his interception...

"Personally, that’s my first collegiate interception so it’s one I’ll remember for the rest of my life. But just having the trust in our defense to be able to go out there and make plays is a great feeling."

Connor Strachan on playing with the defense...

"It’s a lot of fun. There’s great leadership. Just coming into this summer, I wanted to find where I could make an impact in the defense and it’s easy when you have guys like [Steven Daniels], [Connor Wujciak] and [John Johnson], and all these guys that are leading by example. So for us young guys, it’s easy to follow their lead."

Strachan on if the defense was nervous after the offense's slow start...

"I don’t think our unit ever gets nervous. We have faith in the guys around us. We like to get on the field. It’s a chance to make more plays and try to get good field position for the offense and keep it going."

Troy Flutie on making his first start...

"I don’t think it was that crazy. I was ready and our offense was ready. We just worked hard and knew what we had to do. Me personally, I’ve played football for a while now, so it’s just another game. There are a lot bigger guys out there who are faster, but it’s still just another game. I just went out there and did my best and tried to play hard."

Flutie on the family name...

"I hear [about being related to Doug Flutie] a lot on campus. I mean, I have a statue of my uncle out there. So it’s a little expected. But every day I’m working hard to make myself known as an individual, not just a name. I worked on that a lot during high school and I think a lot of the guys respect me for who I am."

Jeff Smith on stepping into the game...

"I’ve heard it ever since I started playing, so I just practice every day like I’m the starting quarterback. You just have to always be ready to run the team as the quarterback."

Smith on transitioning from a running QB...

"It’s not much of a challenge, but I think I need to sit there in the pocket for a long period of time, because I’m quick to go off after my first or second read isn’t there. So coming here, just watching [Darius Wade] and [Troy Flutie] do it, I’ve been learning from them."

Transcripts provided by Boston College Athletics Communications