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Syracuse vs. NC State: The Quotant Quotables

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Scott Shafer and the Orange found themselves on the wrong end of a close loss once again. Here's what they have to say about it.

Brett Carlsen

Scott Shafer's opening statement:

"First off, congratulations to Coach Doeren and the NC State staff. Good victory for them. For us we had some struggles there, especially in the first half. We were trying to juggle some kids around there inside and struggled to run the ball, which was disappointing, but I liked the way the kids were trying."

On AJ Long's pick-six:

"It was a nice play by them.  They dropped an end, similar to what we did against Wake Forest and Robbie [Welsh] made it. It’s tough, especially for a young quarterback when you drop an end in coverage. Nice call by NC State. AJ didn’t see the guy there and he made a nice play to turn it into a touchdown."

On whether he agreed with the onside kick ruling:

"I’m not allowed to comment on any criticisms that I have with the officials. Doug Rhoads and the officials in the ACC do a good job. Nice job by our kids getting the ball and it was kicked really well by Ryan [Norton]. Dyshawn [Davis] got it and you can’t advance the ball so it’s my understanding that you get the ball there and the clock stops."

On how much the offensive line injuries hurt the running game:

"I don’t like to make excuses. We have a lot of guys inside and out hurt. We’re just not the same up front right now. And also, nice job by NC State as well. They did a nice job and we’re just a little thinner than we’d like to be. But no excuses, own it, move on and find a way. Find the next guy up who can help us move the ball a little bit better running it."

On field position:

The field position game was really tough in the first half and they did a good job pinning us inside the 10, I think it was three times, two looked like they were probably inside the five if I remember correctly, so you have to give them a lot of credit. That punter looked like a guy with a great wedge shot. They made it tough on us."

On "momentum":

Momentum is a big deal in sports and football and trying to bounce back from it. It’s one of those things you can’t answer. You keep trying to fight and get that next spark going. Difficult situation, but we had a little bit of momentum there at the end and tried to do something special. We came up a little bit short, but I liked the way we kept fighting. These kids will never quit. It’s like that Monty Python show. Remember that show where the guy loses his arm and then his other arm and his legs and he’s still fighting? That’s our kids, but we’re just running out of arms and legs. God love them, I love these kids and dog gone it we came up short.

On staying bowl eligible:

We’ve got to win out and pull off a miracle, but let’s do it.

AJ Long on his performance:

"I made mistakes down the stretch that I can’t make if I want to win. I can’t fumble the ball with four minutes left. I got to put more air on the ball on the last play of the game. There were too many mistakes that I’m making that cost us this game."

Adonis Ameem-Moore on staying positive:

"The biggest thing with us is that we never quit regardless of what the situation is. We have the confidence and faith in everyone who is on this team. My teammates are my brothers and I am going to have their back regardless of what happens."

Sean Hickey on the offensive line's health:

"The players on the offensive line who had to rotate or start are tough kids and in some situations, I really have to tip my hat out to them. Nick Robinson really tried his hardest. It is tough because some of the guys haven’t had a whole bunch of experience and you just have to keep them calm during the game. (NC State) did a good job in the game plan by giving us some things that we have seen in the past."

On how that affected the run game:

"There were some guys were just unable to get the job done. When you’re in the game you are supposed to execute, and it’s not an excuse to blame our loss to the injuries. If you are in the game you are supposed to execute.  And if you can’t execute, then we have to get the next guy in there."

Robert Welsh on the defense:

"Today I don’t think we did enough. We didn’t create any turnovers. The past couple weeks we’ve been really good at getting the ball back to the offense. It’s tough on the offense when the defense can’t get you the ball back. We weren’t the best defense out there in today’s game."

Steve Ishmael on feelings of disappointment:

"There is definitely some disappointment. Nobody wants to be 3-6. But everything happens for a reason. That’s how I look at it. I just leave everything in the Lord’s hands. We are learning from this experience and hopefully we will get better."

Jarrod West on the loss:

"I hate losing so I’m going to do whatever I can in my power to try to roll the team and the seniors are definitely going to have my back about that.  We are going to do whatever we can to be the best team that we can and try and get these three wins."