Pinkel discusses early season SEC play

Missouri head football coach Gary Pinkel discussed the difficulties of Mizzou's early SEC schedule and the early season struggles in conference. Click the player above to hear everything he had to say and see a partial transcript below.

On how the team is handling falling to 0-2 in conference play:
“I think they are disappointed. We understand we played two really good football teams and happened to play Arizona State in the middle of them too. I also think that we are disappointed we haven’t played better.”

On if the first two SEC games were what he expected:
“What is saw is two top 10 football teams in BCS football and maybe they are top five. That is what I expected. I don’t care what league they are in, those two teams are where they should be ranked-wise I think. They are very talented and very well coached. We anticipated that. It wasn’t a surprise in any way. We recognize that we can play better as well. There are no surprises how good they were. We expected that.”

On South Carolina completing a majority of passes to tight ends and running backs:
“What we try to do is force the ball to be dumped off to the running backs or the tight ends or whoever they have as their secondary receivers. We did a good job, except for once or twice, of doing what we wanted to do. Then it is just a reaction you have to do when the ball is thrown underneath how you pursue it. We don’t think we did a very good job at all of that. The ball was thrown and we didn’t anticipate well. Fundamentally we had some breakdowns and I think you give them some credit of catching the football and turning it up and turning a six yard gain into a 10 or 12 yard gain.”

On not challenging the South Carolina secondary deep:
“I think you always want to vertically stretch the field. When the score started separating a little bit your game plan is not quite the same. When you are calling plays and things are not working, the last thing you want to do is throw it deep and get another second and 10. I have been doing this a long time. I called plays when I was at Washington, and generally when you struggle on offense two things are going to happen. One, the play calling isn’t right, which that the way it is and then you point your fingers to the quarterback. We understand we have to vertically stretch the field. I wish we could have done that more.”

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