On his players being like family: "You get to know these guys on a very personal level. You experience highs, you experience lows. They're there for you, you're there for them. My daughters, Addy and Shola, these guys are like big brothers to them. We do family night every Monday where we have dinner and all the families go up to the training table. It really is a family environment."

On the team regaining focus after the Michigan State loss: "I think we've all kind of grown and learned through last year and this year, and our best model to keep the team on the path that I think we need to be on is taking the 1-0 mentality and not focusing on anything else, trying to limit as much of the noise in the conversations as we possibly can. I feel good about that. We've done that since that game."

On fifth-year senior offensive tackle Andrew Nelson, who has played in just three games this season: "He's a guy that's handled a lot of difficult situations really well. We do the ultimate teammate deal where we go around in a team meeting every day and I ask guys who their ultimate teammate is. And he's the guy that a lot of different players mention, a guy they look up to and how he's handled everything, and how he's kind of a coach at practice and a coach on the field."

On a television announcer's claim that opponents can tell what plays Penn State is running by the way it lines up: "There's a lot of stuff we did during the bye week, scout ourselves from the opposite side of the ball. Whether it's the tight ends' alignment or whether it's the backs' alignment or depth of those things, there's tells. And every offense has them, and every defense has them. We're averaging [37.7] points a game and if everybody knew what we were doing on most of our plays, I would think we'd be scoring a lot less than that."

On whether the defense needed a game like Rutgers after back-to-back losses: "College football at this level is a crazy sport. I see the consistency or lack of consistency that you see all over the country and at every level. To sustain it for 12 straight weeks is challenging. That's the challenge for all of us. I think our defense has played really good football, maybe some of the best defensive football in the country for most of the weeks."