Clemson vs. Auburn Postgame Quotes

AUBURNTIGERSDOTCOM
AUBURNTIGERSDOTCOM

AUBURNTIGERSDOTCOM

Sept. 18, 2010

Recap |  Final Stats |  Notes |  Photo Gallery 

Auburn Locker Room

Auburn Head Coach Gene Chizik

"That was a very exciting game to say the least. I told our team that was a God thing. They kept their faith the whole game, and it was one of those games where they just kept fighting. You are always trying to figure out who your football team is, and you never know until you get into situations where you've basically embarked on uncharted territory which is where we were tonight. We were two touchdowns down at halftime. They were smiling before the game. I told them they ought to be smiling at halftime. You get a chance and an opportunity to play again, and I said we are not changing our body language. We are not changing what we do. We are going to go out and play football better than we did (in the first half) in the second half, and they all did that. There was no magic to it. I think our offensive and defensive coordinators did some great jobs adjusting at halftime to kind of take a little bit better advantage of what they were doing. At the end of the day, it was the players executing better. It was a sloppy win. There were things that we are going to look back and not like. The penalties, again, were unacceptable. We certainly have to do that. We didn't protect the football very well tonight in my opinion. We threw two interceptions. We can't win games consistently doing that, but we can win games if we play with a lot of heart. We can win games if we play with a lot of faith. Like I said, it was a God thing, and we are happy we won, and I couldn't be more proud of our football team because they fought through four quarters and won it at the end."

What adjustments did you make at halftime
"Defensively, the first two games were very vanilla (for Clemson), and we figured that with the opponents that they played. It was really nothing but chalk flying at halftime on a bunch of adjustments. So, we kind of had to see what their game plan was. They caught us off-guard on some things. They are a very good football team. Again, I thought Coach (Ted) Roof did a great job in the second half adjusting to what they did. I think we only gave up seven points in the second half, and then the same thing happened offensively. We just kind of saw what their game plan was and tried to take advantage of it on some big plays which if our offense isn't hitting on big plays, it is hard for us to continue to move the ball. We are kind of a drive it, drive it, drive it, hit a big play offense. That is more of what we did in the second half."

What did Clemson do in the first quarter and a half to keep Auburn from getting a first down? Were they doing something on defense that you haven't seen them do before?
"I think it was probably a combination of a new wrinkle here and there, maybe a couple of new wrinkles, but just a lack of execution with everybody. I don't know who it is. I know the offensive line-wise, we weren't where we needed to be in terms of blocking in front. We couldn't block the perimeter very well. We had some perimeter run plays we were trying to get out there. We couldn't really do that. They just played really great on defense in the first quarter and a half. We adjusted to it eventually and hit them on some big plays. We started to run the ball a little bit better in the second half too."

On Auburn's offense clicking better moving at a fast pace and then things started going better
"It did. It did. As I said in the week, the offense is built where we can slow it down or we can speed it up. We needed to speed it up in some points in there. We were down by two touchdowns, and we need to try to get some tempo and rhythm, and that was working for us."

On Darvin Adams getting Auburn jumpstarted in the second half
"Darvin is just a competitor. When we need a big play, Darvin always seems to come down with those balls, and I tell you it is something else now. He has really come on just as a human being and a football player. I am really proud of him. He did some great things to spark our offense tonight, and we couldn't be more proud."

On getting the ball back with 1:23 left in regulation and two timeouts, did you feel better just going into overtime?
"We were going to try to hit a big play and see if we couldn't hit a draw or hit something right now to give us some breathing room right there. We did not want field position issues. It is better to go into overtime at home. We were going to try to hit something early, and we just couldn't get anything working so we just worked the clock and took it into overtime and try to get the ball down to our student section."

What is it with this team in overtime games? It seems like it is never over.
"I don't know. We just want to make it exciting. That's for sure. Like I told them in the locker room right now, we had two overtime games in the last four games as a football team. We've been very blessed to come out on top with both of them. Again, I think that is part of them just staying in there and hanging in and fighting and clawing and scratching until they find a way to win it. Again, I couldn't be more proud of just the way they responded. The word respond is what our team did tonight in the second half."

On Mike Dyer's performance tonight
"We've weaned Michael into the system some. Tonight was the first time where we really felt where he was going to be able to carry the load, and he did that tonight. He carried the ball (16) times, but he tried to run for some physical yards. He had some good cuts in there vision-wise, but he protected the football. He protected the football. He did everything we asked him to do tonight, and again I am very proud of Michael as well."

Michael Dyer, RB

On tonight's game...
"We fought until the end and started making plays at the end. The defense stepped up again like they did last week and played hard. The offense clicked in times of need and we got it together in the second half. As a team, we all lean on each other, and we came together to pull out the win."

On second-half adjustments ...
"We talked about how you have to love when you are down. That is what brings the man out of you. When you are up by 20 and you got all the yards you need, everyone is doing what they can. But when you are down, it really shows your character. Our team stayed together tonight and no one gave up. We did our best on special teams and they did their part. Sometimes people overlook special teams, but as you can see, they played the biggest part tonight."

On first-quarter struggles...
"We were not really concentrating and we did not have the focus that we usually have. We were not executing our plays and after we settled down, we started pacing and picked it up from there."

On the atmosphere...
"It was the best environment. There were so many people and they were really crazy. It was a great atmosphere."

Nick Fairley, DL

On tonight's game ...
"We talked about how it was not going to be easy. They did a couple of things that confused us, but as a defense you have to react. In the first half, the offense did not really move the ball that well, but in the second half they put up points and the defense held up. We did not know we were going to go into overtime, but we are ready for everything."

On the defense stepping up in the first quarter...
"Sometimes the offense has to help out the defense, and the defense has to help out the offense. In the first half, the offense had to lean on us. In the second half, they came out and scored points and really helped us out."

On the defense stopping Clemson in overtime...
"As a defense, you can bend, but you can't break. That's one thing we do: we bend but don't break."

Cameron Newton, QB

On the 78-yard touchdown pass to Terrell Zachery...
"It was a part of our game plan. We went into the second half knowing they were playing a lot of man coverage. We had intentions to beat them deep and the pump fake stunned them and all I had to do was make a good pass."

On the third quarter...
"We just started executing our plays and everything started slowing down. Everybody started to realize that we can't wait until next time. We had some guys that stood up and starting making some big plays."

Wes Byrum, K

On the game-winning field goal...
"It is always good to put some points up on the board. We were struggling offensively in the first half. It was a very good chance, I was excited to get out there and do my part."

On Auburn's third-quarter offensive production...
"At halftime we knew we came out slow we were not going to let it happen in the second half. We got together and said that we were going to fight as a team. We came out and took care of business."

On mindset when entering overtime situation...
"It is pretty much the same thing as any other field goal. I took a couple of kicks in the net to get my legs warm to go out there and do my part for the team."

On his position as a veteran...
"We worked hard all summer on special teams to make sure that we were doing our part. The way the kickers and snappers played today was really a tribute to the guys in the trenches playing ninety snaps. When we get a chance to come out and do our part we give everything we got."

Josh Bynes, LB

On the game...
"I think we were not executing defensively on our side of the ball. We were not matching up well and they were making the most out of their screen plays. The main thing was we were not making was our tackles, that is why they were able to jump on us 17-0."

On defending Clemson's 82 snaps...
"When I go out there on the field, I sometimes play a lot of plays. I remind myself that I am doing this for 90,000 fans and the other guys on the team. I go out there 100 percent like I don't feel any pain."

On playing overtime in front of the student section...
"It was very helpful. You get the crowd noise involved. I think when we got that second chance to defend the field goal our crowd helped in him missing."

On the Auburn defense in the second half...
"We came in at halftime and the first thing that came out of my mouth was `0-0.' We came out in the second half with smiles on our face just like we started the game over. We have been in these situations before. We were going to overcome adversity. Our team is very competitive and mature, we were not going to bow our heads."

Darvin Adams, WR

On Auburn's third-quarter offense...
"In the first half, we shot ourselves in the foot, but we knew that we could get better. After halftime we came out and executed better and worked on cutting down on penalties."

On the 35 yard touchdown play...
"Coach Malzahn dialed up a stopper out in the end zone. The offensive line did a great job of giving Cameron (Newton) enough time to get rid of the ball and I felt like I had good leverage on the defender. Cam threw a great pass route. Either I was going to get it or it was going out of bounds and I am glad they reviewed it because I felt like I came down with my foot inbounds."

Zac Ethridge, S

On second down tackle for no gain in overtime...
"I just had to man up and try to make a play to save the game. I just filled the hole behind the fullback and was able to make a play on the ball."

On Auburn's second-half defense...
"We came into the locker room at halftime and told each other that we were not going to quit. We just kept on fighting. It really showed the character of our team. We leaned on each other and kept on fighting."

On Auburn student section...
"They did not really have much to cheer for in the first half. We apologize for the first half. We told them all week that we wanted them to be `All In.' We were not all in the first half. In the second half, we had to give the fans something to watch."

Terrell Zachery, WR

On the turnaround at half...
"We just came in and everybody made their minds up. We were not going to lose. We came out in the second half and were determined to get the job done."

On believing in one another ...
"That's the only thing that carried us through it. We knew we had a great defense. We just had to put up some points and they would take care of the rest."

On his touchdown catch...
"It was a stop-and-go. We have been doing it since last year, and it always works. Everybody did their job the offensive line blocked well. The corner bit on the pump fake and Cam threw a great ball."

On tight roping the sideline...
"I've been taking a dance class and I think that really helped me out."

On his overall performance...
"I think I played well. Overall the offense played good, but we still have a long way to go."

Ryan Pugh

On the turnaround at halftime...
"It was something where we knew we could score points on them, we just kept shooting ourselves in the foot. We knew we had times in the first half were we had a chance for first-and-goal and we had a holding call. We had two or three holding calls in the first half and you know that is very uncharacteristic of us. We let our technique get sloppy and we just didn't finish blocks like we needed to."

On adjustments at the half...
"They were giving us some things secondary-wise and up front that we could take advantage of. We didn't need to change much we just needed to execute better. We knew they weren't going to lay down for us but we knew as an offense that we could come back, we had been in that deficit before so we just came out fighting and came out swinging."

On the offense having more than 200 yards rushing...
"I tell you what, their front four might be as good as any front four that you will play in the SEC, they were really talented up front, they played hard and were physical - hats off to them for playing a heck of a game. At the same time, I thought we played good to rush for that many yards our quarterbacks and running backs made some plays and we just ended up being on top."

On how it felt to get the win...
"There is nothing like it in the world. We talk about it every week, you can't get this feeling any other way. That's what keeps you practicing and what keeps you going hard and it keeps you coming back for more."


Clemson Locker Room

Head Coach Dabo Swinney

Opening Statement...
"First of all, I would like to congratulate Auburn. I give them a lot of credit for hanging in there. They fought back when they had their backs against the wall in overtime. It was a good football game and a good one to watch. I am disappointed that we did not win. I think we have a chance to be a good football team. I think we have the ingredients and I thought that coming in. I was not really sure how they would respond to adversity. We did not play a perfect game. We made some mistakes but they fought hard. They showed poise in critical times. When Auburn made a run they hung tough. Our offense made a critical drive to tie the game. We missed a play to tight end Dwayne Allen in regulation that could have set up the win. We also missed a play in overtime. When you go on the road, you have to make those plays. We were not able to finish it and we had the chance to. We win as a team, we lose as a team. It was disappointing to lose by a field goal, but I am proud of the team. I would not trade kicker Chandler Catanzaro for anyone. He is a freshman and will only get better.

On Kyle Parker's health...
"He is beat up. His shoulder, ribs and back were sore. Talk about a gutsy performance, Kyle Parker really came through. It was a gutsy performance by that young man and I am proud of him."

On overtime penalty and overall performance of the team...
"They originally called it offsides then changed it to the center double-clutching the ball. When we kicked it, the hold was good but the kick was off. It is not good to see points come off the board, but that's football. There is a lot of pain and hurt. Our guys fought real hard to win this game. Auburn is a team we will be playing for a couple of more years. We learned a lot about them and they learned a lot about us. Hopefully they go on and have a good season and I wish them well. We have to go back to work to achieve all our goals that are still there. Any time you lose a game in overtime with a chance to win it, it is a painful thing. We will study this film and learn from it. We had a lot of young guys playing in key positions tonight. They hit us on a couple of big plays. In the fourth quarter, we battled back and showed a lot of poise."

On what he learned about his team...
"Coming in, I thought we had the ingredients to be a good team. We have not been tested yet with adversity or play on the road yet. I saw some good things tonight. There are still some things we have to clean up. It is not easy to come into this place. We physically imposed our will in the fourth quarter to get that last touchdown. We made some great runs and great blocks, with their backs up against the wall. When they adversity came, they stood up and did not wilt and that is a good sign to me."

On Auburn's performance in the second half...
"They out-played us. It was not anything more than stutter- and- go routes and we bit on them. We did not play with technique. It was not anything fancy, they just made a couple of huge plays that got them right back in it. This is a good football team, ranked 15th in the country and playing at home. We knew that at some point this would happen. That is a big gorilla that gets on your back when the momentum shifts on the road. Our guys rose up. We missed tight end Dwayne Allen, which could have won the game. We made a lot of plays, too. We will see some good things and negative things. Even if we had won, we still would have had a lot of things to correct."

Kyle Parker, QB

On the tough loss on the road...
"It is one of those ones where you leave and you really know you should have won. I think we did everything to earn it and everything to win--that's the game though. We didn't win and there's nothing we can do about it, and if we keep thinking about that one it's going to be a long year."

On the last pass to the endzone to win the game...
"I think it was a bad pass. I think I could have made it a lot easier on him. I think he did a great job of getting open, and I take 100% of the blame on that one."

On whether the injury affected his play towards the end of the game...
"Probably. Obviously, I didn't feel good going out there, but you've got to push through. I think anyone else out there would have done the same thing I did. If they were able to play, which I felt like I was able to play, they would have gone out there and given it their best. That's what I did and I think the guys respected that. It doesn't seem fair that we didn't win, but I guess it's not fair sometimes. We'll get over it. It's a tough one to swallow but we've got to move on."

On the specifics of his injury...
"I just couldn't move. It was just uncomfortable. It's no big deal--you've just got to make plays when they're there."

On when or if he felt he would be going back into the game...
"I knew I was going back in. I told them that they would have to take me out on a stretcher before I would come out of the game because it was one of those games. Obviously, I didn't feel good and I don't know if it affected my play, but I probably could have done some things more, and it probably could have been a little more painful."

On missed opportunities to win the game...
"Yeah, we had them, but we let them go, and, you know, it happens."

On using this game and the off-week to get ready for an upcoming home game against Miami...
"We just came into one of the biggest atmospheres we've ever played in, and you've got to give them credit--they came back and beat us. But I think we kind of let them off the ropes a little bit and we should have won, but you've got to take it. You know, they are the 15th-ranked team on the road, and I guess we can just tell our players that we can really play with anyone, but we've just got to finish it and we'll be alright."

Dwayne Allen, TE

On his mindset when Auburn went up 24-17....
"We need to get a score. The defense gets a stop, we will win this game. I have nothing but faith and belief in all 115 guys that are on the team. All 74 that travel with us, I believe in them and I knew we were going to pull this out but we came up short."

On the late incompletion thrown his way...
"It was just something we were looking at. We saw how they played the screen. I got open but Kyle (Parker) got pressured and we were not able to connect. I missed a couple plays early where I cut outside and then I cut back toward the middle and I thought the only person that could make the play was the backside safety. If I catch the ball, I can end the game."

On building off the loss and preparing to face Miami...
"Coming into this game, I knew we were the underdog and I felt the first half would show the conference and other conferences that this is Clemson football. Coming off this loss, it hurts. That's going to be with the guys for the next couple of weeks. Fortunately we have a bye week this week. We have a great quarterback and a great team, we just have to have a good two weeks of practice."

On quarterback Kyle Parker playing through the pain...
"Here is a guy with a million bucks sitting in his bank account unless he gets hurt. If I was in this situation I don't know how I would react. He is a different guy, he is not me. He sucked it up and got back into the game."

Jamie Harper, RB

On atmosphere in huddle...
"Kyle got banged up today, but he wants to win. He was strong-willed, he kept his head up."

On effect of close loss...
"A loss always hurts, either way, but I think we learned a lot today. The guys on the other side fought hard too, they battled back and tied it. Hats off to Auburn for a hard win."

On opening drive score...
"Any first drive is big, no matter where you are, high school, college or pro. It's always huge to get a TD on the first drive."

On proving something for the ACC...
"Well, everyone knows that the SEC is a powerhouse conference with a lot of great teams, but I think we showed today that the ACC can get it done too."

DaQuan Bowers, DE

On defensive standoff after the third quarter ...
"That's what great defenses do. You have opportunities to do things, and we had some missed opportunities. But, we will bounce back, and I get ready for Miami."

On being a leader of the team and getting the others to understand the game ...
"The game speaks for itself. They know what we did and what we didn't do. What we've got to do when we go back to work next week, we have to learn to capitalize on our mistakes and just go back to the drawing board and get better.

On having a bye week coming up...
"I think it is a good thing that we have a bye week coming up. You know, after an emotional loss like this it will give us an opportunity to get healed up. You know Kyle had some knicks and bruises and some other guys have some knicks and bruises and it will give them a chance to get better. You know it was an emotional rollercoaster and it will give us some time to get healed up."

On what you learned about your team from the game ...
"I learned a lot from the game about my team. I learned that we have a bunch of guys that are not going to give up, that we have a hard-nosed team that's not going to give up. You know, I'm proud of our offensive line, our receivers, our running backs and am proud of my defense. You know they gave it everything they got and left it out on the field. They are all in."

On focusing on ACC play coming up...
"We are going to go after Miami and give it everything we got just like we did tonight. We are not going to let this game affect our season. You know, if we would have won it, it would have been the same. We've got to put this game behind us come tomorrow. "