Top Quotes: Harbaugh praises Patterson


On to Rutgers.

After shellacking Penn State, 42-7, at home Saturday, improving Michigan’s record to 8-1, Jim Harbaugh spoke at his regular Monday press conference.

He wasn’t singing, but he had plenty of praise for his team.

Here are the best quotes from Harbaugh’s press conference:

On the cornerbacks:

“It takes a lot of discipline to play cornerback in this system and great atheticism. There are no plays off. Plus when they recognize it’s run, they’ve got to get involved in run. And that translates to the linebacker position. The linebackers have to play man to man as opposed to dropping into a zone.”

On Brandon Watson:

“(He’s) great, outstanding. You love the pick six. What a great thing in a football game for our team. I think we’re on top right now in the country with four pick sixes. My son Jack loves pick sixes.”

On Cesar Ruiz and the o-line:

“Cesar’s personality is one that everyone enjoys being around, very popular with the players, very respectful to the coaches and the staff. Really good, down to earth, genuine, good person. he’s been outstanding making calls and adjustments. O-line played outstanding again on Saturday. I thought it was outstanding we were able to stay on schedule during the game.”

On who the No. 2 QB is:

“We’ll see this week. Definitely Brandon (Peters) and Joe (Milton) will be competing for that spot.”

On Milton’s redshirt:

“We’re on schedule for that. He’s participated in one game.”

On taking into consideration postseason games with Milton’s redshirt:

“Yes. Doesn’t matter if it’s 12 or 13 games, his four games will count as four games. You could make the argument that it should be a percentage of games.”

On keeping Milton’s redshirt if possible:

“We’d like that.”

On the o-line:

“I think it’s been really good. I think we’re the only team in the country that’s had a back rush for 100 yards for 7-straight weeks. Karan Higdon deserves a lot of the credit there. He’s taking a lot of hits where you don’t see the defender. He had couple in the last ballgame, one where he got his facemask torqued. One time he got hit blindside, the plays that are high percentage to cough up the ball, and he hasn’t. The other thing you compliment the offensive line is playing without being penalized. I think there’s been maybe five penalties all year, no illegal chop blocks, no cutting downfield, no ineligible receiver downfield, playing really good in that regard. Coach Warriner’s done a great job. Each player that’s been playing has improved, playing aggressive football and being very well-coached.”

On the RBs:

“Chris (Evans) now coming back, good to see Chris have a good ballgame. Tru Wilson’s also played extremely well. Pretty happy with the backs, especially Karan. The yards he’s getting after contact are really good. He’s got a knack for taking short runs, blocked for two yards, and he makes it four.”

On Bush:

“Great work ethic, he’s got great passion for what he’s doing, resonates with people, it’s real. Good to see a youngster with passion for something, with a plan for what they’re doing.”

On special teams:

“I think our special teams have been doing well. This past game, the two stars are Ben Mason and Tyler Cochran. Ben Mason is penetrating and puncturing the wedge, and then Cochran is coming from the other side, cutting the field in half. Probably not quite as good as Rutgers kickoff coverage, they’re one of the best in the nation. Will Hart is really good. Rutgers has a very good punter as well. It will be a good challenge this week.”

On WR Tarik Black:

“He’s looking good. Everybody’s happy to have him back.”

On looking ahead:

“Taking it one game at a time. Looking ahead is not a very good idea.”

On Rashan Gary:

“I think it was really good for the morale of the team and for Rashan to get back out there. He’s a leader on our team, so everybody has great respect for him, played really well too.”

On Josh Uche:

“He’s got a real knack to create speed off the edge and convert that to power when he needs it, but he’s also got the threat of speed off the edge. He’s a really special player.”

On Shea Patterson making the transition to Michigan:

“The first thing I noticed was how intense he was in practice, how focused he was. Seeing him day after day, getting comfortable playing in this system, it’s been all good since he got here. He’s really given our football team a big lift on those third and sixes, third and sevens. Another set of downs, that’s huge. He’s throwing the ball really accurately too. I think all quarterbacks are tough, in my opinion. It’s a physically demanding position. He brings a level of focus and mental toughness to the position that few do, only upper percentile is able to do that. You ask him to do something and he delivers.”

On Gary’s health:

“You saw him play this week, but I don’t have an update this week.”

On Dylan McCaffrey’s health:

“Probably (ruled out for the season).”

On targeting:

“You should be able to expect consistency with that call, I don’t see why not. It looked like a launch, that was something they were trying to get out of football. I don’t know. Leaving the feet, to the head and neck area, what they were really trying to get out of the game of football.”

Looking back on luring Patterson to Michigan:

“We started with conversations, really, just to see if it would be a fit.”


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