NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Nebraska coach Mike Riley wasn’t super pleased with his team’s performance on Friday in the Music City Bowl.
He gave credit to Tennessee for the Vols’ 38-24 win but thought his team could have played better. Here’s what he had to say:
- “We’re obviously disappointed losing the game. They did what we couldn’t allow them to do. We had a hard time blocking the defensive front and we just gave up too many big plays.”
- On the defensive struggles: “The athleticism of the QB was a factor. He did a nice job of throwing a lot of balls right on time, but it looks like to me too when it wasn’t there he bought time, or moved around and ran. Those plays were part of it. I think he went for two touchdowns off of scramble plays. His athleticism gave them a lot of extra opportunities.
- On Nebraska starting quarterback Ryker Fyfe: “He played a heck of a game.”
- On what positives Riley took from the game: “This game was, for us, it’s part of our process now in going forward. The players playing the game will have great experience playing against a good team. They have some good players. Experience of playing will be good for our team. This is the end of one team and the beginning of another.”
- The biggest factor in the loss: “The biggest factor going in was can we block the Tennessee defensive front and can we block (Derek) Barnett? And when we did get a little bit of time we made plays. (Barnett) made just about all the plays he could have made. We knew, given the chance, he’d make plays.”