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November 12, 2012CMU head coach Dan Enos spoke with the media on Monday in his weekly MAC media teleconference, addressing several key topics prior to the Chippewas game against Miami on Saturday.
On the victory at Eastern Michigan
"We got off to a pretty poor start. We turned the ball over on our first play and Eastern did a really good job scoring, then they got up on us 14-0. We obviously didn't get out of the blocks the way we would have wanted to, but I credit our young men for bouncing back and hanging in there to cut the deficit to 14-10 by halftime. Then Eastern switched quarterbacks after halftime to Alex Gillett, who I have a tremendous amount of respect for. He really gave them a spark and they went up 21-10. Once again our guys battled back and scored to cut it to 21-17. Then we were able to go ahead 31-21. I thought our defense played very well at times in the fourth quarter getting big stops. It's not how you diagram it when you picture playing a whole game, but it was a big win for our football program. It was nice to be able to come from behind and then go into the fourth quarter with a lead and be able to hold onto that lead."
On the positives CMU showed in the second half
"We talk to our players constantly about being able to handle adversity. We've had several games this year where we've had leads in the third and fourth quarter, against Western and Toledo, for example. We hadn't done a lot when it comes to hanging on to wins. Then you throw in the asterisk of being able to come from behind. Credit to our players and coaches for continuing to believe in what we are doing and continuing to battle."
On the strength of the MAC this season
"I can't speak to it being as strong as the conference has ever been because I've only been here three years. But I've been very impressed with it this year. There are a lot of good football teams in this conference. Why it's so strong, I don't have an answer for that either, other than the fact that the coaches have been doing a very good job of recruiting. You know, you have a coach like Coach Solich (at Ohio) who has been there for many years and building that program. Coach Beckman at Toledo, what he has started there; they hired a guy from the staff to keep the continuity. At Kent State, Coach Hazell has done a good job. From the top to bottom, I think the league is very good and very well-coached. I also think that being at Michigan State and Cincinnati for my last two jobs, I see how the recruiting plays out. I think the Mid-American Conference schools have a bit of an advantage at times in finding players later in the recruiting process. A lot of those bigger schools fill up sooner and a lot of these Mid-American Conference schools aren't filled up yet and we are able to recruit a lot of these really, really good players late. In the couple years I've had, I've felt we've gotten some very good players late in the recruiting process. Maybe those kids are available because other bigger schools are filled up so early."
On the status of Titus Davis' ankle injury
"I would say he is probable right now. Today, he wasn't very swollen and he seems to be moving around pretty well. We'll probably know more by Wednesday, but I think he is probable at this point."
On his familiarity with Coach Treadwell
"Coach Treadwell and I are very good friends. We worked together for two years at Cincinnati and then several years at Michigan State. He's an outstanding person and a great coach. I have the utmost respect for him as a professional and as a friend. He does a tremendous job of coaching and teaching."
On the keys versus Miami
"I think at the end of the day they are a lot like us. They have the same record and I think the biggest key of the game is slowing down their quarterback, Zac Dysert. I think he is an NFL player and I think he is probably the best quarterback in this league. That's saying a lot as I think there are a lot of good quarterbacks in this league. I've been very impressed by him. We played against him two years ago. I'm impressed by not only his accuracy, but also his decision-making and poise. They do a very good job with him as well."
On what he sees out of the Miami defense
"They've been banged up a little bit here and there. But they are playing a lot of man coverage and bring a lot of pressure. They did that this past week against Kent State. Nunley, their cornerback, is an outstanding player. I think they are very good on the defensive line as well. What they do creates a lot of challenges, with the multiple looks they give you with their man coverages and zones. But like I said, I think they play hard and are extremely well-coached. It's going to be difficult."
On his seniors playing their final game at Kelly/Shorts Stadium
"We've been very blessed. We have a very good group of seniors. We love these guys and they've provided outstanding leadership for us this year. We've been able to count on these guys to handle adversity. Every Sunday and Monday we come in after we've lost a game and these guys provide a great influence for our younger players. They say let's get back to work and let's win the next game. These guys have done a very good job of working over the last few years. They love this place and they love this school. We have very good team chemistry. We know our underclassmen are going to want to send them out the right way. It's just lucky for me to be able to be a part of these young men's lives the last couple of years. I know our coaching staff is going to greatly miss these kids."
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