Following the Wisconsin Badgers' embarrassing loss at Ohio State on Saturday, head coach Paul Chryst had the opportunity to speak with local media members immediately afterward and once again on Monday morning as part of his weekly availability.
While many of the questions centered around the 31-point defeat in Columbus and Wisconsin's upcoming contest with Illinois, others touched on the team's disappointing start and his message going forward.
Here is an overview of what Chryst had to say across a variety of topics.
- After initially giving credit to Ohio State, Chryst discussed the team's lack of execution early on, saying "we didn't get off to a good start."
- Chryst also mentioned that the team needs "to be better, to give yourself a chance to win games you need to play good football," something he did not think his team did on Saturday.
- He did mention that he likes how his team did not give up, saying that the group "kept playing, kept playing with each other." He hopes that continues going forward.
- When asked about the 31-point loss, Chryst said, "you can't hide from what happened. Right? You've got to own it." Chryst would continue by saying, "you also have to own your response" as well.
- On the topic of fan disappointment about the team's 2-2 record, Chryst had this to say: "I get people not being happy with where we are at right now. They're no more disappointed than I think anyone in the program is. But I also know that, you know what, we come back, and we got to go and bounce back from this stuff." Moments later, Chryst would say, "[we] want to have a team that people are proud of, but [the] biggest concern is getting our guys to play good football."
You can watch his entire press conference from Saturday night below.
- Chryst began his opening statement by saying that the team is "excited to be able to get back home and play this week against an Illinois team that I think is playing really great football right now." A few seconds later, he noted that the team "has four games under our belt, and we've got to make sure we learn lessons through those experiences, positives, and negatives."
- On the key points he stresses when it comes to bouncing back from a tough loss, Chryst mentioned that players need to "maximize the opportunity" and learn from the past, but focus on what's next, and the next play.
- When asked about the offensive line, Chryst highlighted the importance of continuity and players having time to play together. Chryst believes that the group is "getting there," despite all of the injuries and shuffling that has taken place through the first four games.
- Chryst was later asked about Illinois head coach Bret Bielema, to which Chryst stated "I enjoyed working with him," and that he believes what Bielema has done at Illinois the past couple of years has been "impressive, it's a good football team."
- Chryst was non-committal on a timeline for Clay Cundiff when asked about it. Cundiff is not yet ruled out of the season, but is not available this weekend, according to the updated injury report.
- On the improvement of Illinois' offense from a year ago, Chryst mentioned "I think they've kind of settled in on their identity. And certainly, I think the 'back [Chase Brown] is really good, and talented, and runs hard, and breaks a lot of tackles." Chryst would also note that the passing game is a nice complement for Illinois and that their offense has some "explosive playmakers" on the outside.
Once again, you can watch the entire press conference below.
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