INDIANAPOLIS - Michigan State head coach Mark Dantonio and somber players Kirk Cousins and B.J. Cunningham took questions at the press conference podium following the Spartans' 42-39 loss to Wisconsin in the Big Ten Championship Game, Saturday night.
Among Dantonio's quotes:
"I think that we are worthy of and can compete at a BCS level."
"We had 'em on the ropes. My feeling is Russell Wilson created a lot of plays when we had him in a bad situation."
"We played outstanding on offense. 39 points should warrant a victory."
On the roughing the punter penalty: "Based on the way that they had changed the punt up from the last time when we were able to block a punt, it left a guy free off the edge. We almost blocked one in the end zone with Tony Lippett, came very, very close. With 1:57 to go, it was my call, I told them, 'Let's go for the block,' obviously not telling not to lay out on the block point, not rough 'em.
"I don't know if he hit him. You guys had a better view of that. You probably have seen all the replays. Threw the flag. I thought he flopped a little bit. If he hit him, he just nicked him.
"But Keshawn runs it back. He's a great football player. The play leading up to that, on the out of bounds play was extremely close, with the replay and that also played into this as well because that would have been a first down.
"It's a game of inches."
Click the link below to listen to AUDIO of the post-game press conference (media were not allowed to shoot video of the press conference).