Nov. 10, 2012
Auburn Head Coach Gene Chizik
"Georgia is a very good football team, and we didn't play very well tonight in any phase of the game I didn't feel like, and the score I think pretty much indicated that. So, we are going to keep swinging away, and we have two more games left. It's going to be important for us to come back and work tomorrow. We have a senior class who has to play their last game here at Jordan-Hare, and that is going to be very important for us to come back and go to work and make sure that they come out of their senior season with their last game at home as a win. That's where we are at right now. So, we are going to keep swinging away. Again, it was disappointing. That's a very good team. They are certainly worthy of their ranking, but again I didn't feel like we played well in any phase of the game. So, that is why the result is what it is. We are going to continue to swing away and try to improve."
What has this year been like this year for you and the program?
"It's what you see. It's been frustrating. Again, it has just been one of those years where it has kind of snowballed in momentum, and we haven't been able to really catch any. This league is what it is every year, and it is not going to change. It's very good football teams and again we haven't played very well in some games and again, tonight was one of those games."
Do you feel like you have lost the team at all?
"I don't. I really don't. I don't. Absolutely not. I feel like obviously we didn't play well. But, on the sideline during the game, and just kids being into the game and still being in there and being competitive, not dragging their heads and putting their heads down, I don't feel like that at all."
What was the call on the trick play in the first quarter?
"Well obviously, when you move on the other side of the 50, there are certain things that you feel like you have the chance to hit. It was a reverse pass that we were trying to hit, and we just thought it was a good time to run it. We practiced it all week. Again, it didn't pan out exactly the way that we had planned, but again it was kind of a deceptive play in there that we felt had a chance to work."
Is that when it started snowballing after the trick play?
"I mean you can cite that one play as really it snowballing, but I wouldn't say that. I just feel like again pretty much all day on both sides of the football, I thought we were very poor, and I don't think that really, obviously that would have been a great momentum swing if we had hit that, but we didn't. It is about execution for 60 minutes in the game on both sides of the ball, and that just didn't happen."
How painful is it to lose to Georgia 38-0?
"It is very painful. It is very painful. It is painful for the coaches and players, certainly the fans and alumni. It is very painful for everybody."
On Jonathan Wallace in his first SEC start
"I think Jonathan did some things tonight that were good, and I think Jonathan had some opportunities in there that were missed. Again, a lot of times tonight, he had some pressure on him that we should have been able to pick up on a couple of occasions where they were blitzing and pressuring him. A couple of times, he extended plays and made plays and there were a couple of times where there were some wide open receivers right now, and he didn't necessarily get the ball on target. So, I think it was kind of a mixture of all that. Again, it is tough on a true freshman to come in against a defense like Georgia's, who is very effective and very good at what they do, but again overall, we won't know those things until we see the film. But again, I thought he extended some plays tonight and made some plays. I think there were times where we had opportunities that we could have, and we were off the mark a little bit."
What was the reason for Kris Frost and some of the younger guys not getting some snaps in the game?
"Well again, we are just trying to put a defense out there that is going to stop them. There are some guys because of your substitution packages, some nickel guys and some dime guys that don't get to play much anyway simply because it depends on how much personnel-wise one group is in there over another. So a guy like Kris Frost and there are some other young guys that definitely need to get in there, there's no question about it but there are others that have not really played much on the day either that need the work as well. So, again we have to just get some different guys into the game at different times."
Where does the accountability come from to be able to bounce back?
"Coaches and players. Accountability is always on me. This is my football team. So, it always starts with me and then the coaches have to coach better and the players have to play better because we are all in this game together. This is a team game starting with the head coach and going down to whoever the last man standing is. We all take this very personal. This is our livelihood. So, accountability goes on everybody, but it certainly starts with me."
Is it tough for you to think about your future at Auburn with a 2-8 record?
"I don't entertain those thoughts. Again, like I said earlier, I have really one quest. We have two games left, and our seniors have done a lot for this University. They have a lot for this place, and I hurt for them. Certainly, they never envisioned going out with this type of season nor did anybody else coaching-wise either, but it is their last go around. So, I have one focus for them, and that is this week in them playing their last game at home and trying to get a win."
How do you handle your team with all of the things said about them on the outside?
"Well again, I think with our team we always just try to talk about all of the things that we can control, and we have been like that since day one. So, we can't control what is being said, what is being thought what is everybody's opinion. We can't live our lives that way. We have really tried to keep them focused in talking about continuing to do their job and as I say just every day coming to work in trying to continue to work on the right path to improve, and that has really been our message. And again, I am very proud of those guys because they come in there and they do that, and they try to get better and improve. And again, we have to coach them better and they have to play better and that all starts with me."
Have you been in contact with your superiors during all of this?
"I talk to Jay Jacobs on a daily basis. I typically don't have a lot of contact with Dr. Gogue day in and day out until the end of the year anyway, but I am not going into any of the details of that. Like I said, I have one goal and that is come back to work tomorrow and work this week. I am trying to get a win for these seniors."
Georgia Head Coach Mark Richt
"Obviously, we played well. I was really proud of everybody. It was a very outstanding performance by everybody--offense, defense, special teams. Great crowd for Georgia tonight. The Redcoat Band was there. Very nice field celebration (of our) victory with our fans and our band and our families and our team. I'm just very thankful to have the opportunity to go back to Atlanta. I'm very excited about winning the East. I'm very excited about going to Atlanta. There's no doubt about that. There's a lot of work to be done between now and then. We have a couple of games to be played. We have Georgia Southern coming up this week that we know is going to be a challenge, and we've got to work hard to prepare for them, and we also have to work hard in just getting better as a football team as we progress throughout the year. I think we've been improving as we go, and hopefully we keep it going."
On getting better as a football team...
"Every day that we practice we have a chance to get better or worse. This is all there is to it. There's just so many things on offense, so many things on defense and special teams. There are just so many facets of the game. You can perfect it, and again, if you feel like you're playing at a high level somewhere along the way, if you don't keep honing it, if you don't keep working hard at it, you're going to lose what you have. We just have to keep moving forward, and hopefully we'll keep getting better during practice."
On anything seen tonight that needs improvement...
"There were some things protection-wise that (weren't) just right. When you have a game like that, you might think everything is going right. Every time we snap the ball, we'll see some things that weren't done as well as they should be, so we just have to make sure that we keep getting better. The thing about football is every week you play, it's a whole new team, it's a whole new scheme. You can't just sit there and say, `Well, let's just run that same game plan.' You can't do that because you have different defensive looks, different offensive looks and different things to deal with on special teams. It's always a challenge every week.
On a different feeling about making it to the SEC Championship...
"It's a little different in that, again, we're excited about it, and I don't want to belittle it in any way, shape or form winning the East because it's a big deal. There are six other teams in the Eastern Division. It's very difficult to get in the position to go back to Atlanta, but I just think we really feel like since we were there last year and didn't do very well--we played a good first half and we just didn't do much the second half--we just want to play better. We want to have a better performance when we get there."
Auburn Player Quotes
On tonight's game...
"It was a battle. Georgia is a very good team. They did what they had to do to win the game. They're very good. They were very consistent running the ball. They have a good scheme."
On what the team needs to improve on for next week...
"I need to tackle better. We have to be better for our team."
DE Nosa Eguae
On tonight's game...
"It was a tough game. I thought we had a good week of practice. Georgia played a great game and we didn't. It is hard because the season is winding down, and we want to do our seniors right."
On Georgia's offense...
"They did some things that we didn't see on film, like their tempo. They executed, and we didn't."
On what needs to be improved on...
"We have to go back out there and go to work. We have to work hard and make sure we send the seniors out with a win."
WR Emory Blake
On the game...
"We didn't play well. They're a good team, but we ended up beating ourselves. We just have to keep fighting."
On the game...
"We just didn't finish. We didn't finish our drives. We made mistakes. We didn't capitalize when we had opportunities. That's not going to win the game, but we just have to keep going. You have to keep going, and you have to keep pushing. That's the biggest thing right now, not giving up. The guys aren't giving up, and we just have to keep pushing."
On the preparation for this game...
"This week, practice was really good. We really had a good week of practice. It's just a matter of taking advantage of every single play that we run. We weren't able to do that sometimes, and we just have to keep pushing."
On the support from teammates...
"They really rallied around me. They've been helping me with my confidence as well. Just that trust factor that we have with each other is really great. The guys are really supportive. Hopefully we'll be able to go in this week and come out with a win."
FB Jay Prosch
On the game...
"We just didn't come out and play like we should have. Georgia is a good football team, and we really needed to be on top of everything. We just didn't come out and get it done."
On Georgia's game...
"They just locked us down. We got momentum a few times, and we just weren't able to continue it. A few things here and there, and we just lost our momentum. We weren't able to finish the drive and things like that."
On what was taken from this loss...
"We just have to finish the game. That's it. Just like the whole season. We have to keep going and finish. That's it."
DT Jeff Whitaker
On being down early...
"Any game has its ups and downs. For us, we just had to play better. We did some things early that, unfortunately, we were unable to recover from. We have to keep fighting. That is our motto around here. Auburn is a great university with an historic tradition. It is a blue-collar university. These are some trying times right now, but it will be better."
On the difficulty of coming out and playing every week...
"It is a different mentality. It is difficult, but when you come back and get to work with Corey (Lemonier) and Nosa (Eguae), it makes it not so difficult. You see guys on the defense and offense that don't stop working. If your brother keeps working, you can't quit. That's the mentality around here. Like I said, (these are) trying times. It is easier said than done, but when you are playing with your brother, you don't mind stepping up. We are going to come out next week, and we are going to fight hard. We are going to keep fighting and keep swinging."
DE Dee Ford
On tonight's game...
"It was bad. They ran the ball on us."
On coming back from injury...
"It was good to be back on the field and feel normal again, but I have to make more plays."
On what to take from the game...
"We have to keep fighting, we can't give up. Any time things aren't going your way, you can't quit. You have to keep fighting and swinging. It's old and redundant, but that's what it is."
Georgia Player Quotes
QB Aaron Murray
On the game/clinching the SEC East...
"Oh, it's awesome. After that game at South Carolina, to every week be praying that a team will lose and luckily they did. This is the SEC. Like I've been saying all year, you just never know who's going to win. We just knew we had to do our job, and that is to continue to win and continue to put ourselves in position. If teams did lose, we would be able to get back. And, like I said, South Carolina lost a couple and we've won out the rest of the way. We've continued to get better every week. I'm just extremely proud of our guys."
On taking control early...
"That's what we knew. We knew we had to come in here and try to get on them really early and try to put some points on the board. Trying to get their fans out of it is the biggest thing. When you play away games, if you can get the crowd out of the game offensively enough that's huge for us. We were able to do that early and make some big plays."
On return to Auburn after the 2010 game...
"Oh, I try not to remember that. I was just walking by the training room and I looked in there. I was like, `Man, I never want to be in there ever again.' I remember that two years ago. Just a completely different feeling, a completely different team. And like I said, I'm just extremely proud of our guys."
On reaching SEC title game...
"Oh, it's extremely exciting. You know, we still have two regular season games to go so we've got to get ready and put this behind us. The SEC Championship is three weeks away, so we still have two more games to win."
FS Bacarri Rambo
On today's game...
"It feels great. All the seniors and everybody in the NFL, that's what they came back for. We still haven't finished. This is just a ticket to the Georgia Dome for the SEC Championship, so we just have to go there and handle business."
On coming out strong...
"We just wanted to come out here and start fast. Last week we didn't start fast, but we finished strong. We wanted to start fast and finish strong this week. We just came out here with a different mentality to just shut them out and get the offense rolling, and everything else will just take care of itself."
On preparing for Atlanta...
"Everybody just has to keep playing hard, and keep improving each week. We just need to do our assignment and do it the best we can. We'll win, because we've got the players and the coaches. We just have to do what they teach us and what they ask, and everything else will just take care of itself."
LB Jarvis Jones
On returning to the SEC Championship Game...
"It's a great feeling. We've been training all year for it. Everybody decided to come back and focus and put the work in. It started in the spring. The leaders on the team have been at the forefront, making sure everybody takes care of business. We've been reaching our goal every week."
On tonight's game...
"We knew it was a big game. We knew Auburn was going to be ready for us, and we knew being on the road would be a tough atmosphere. Our defense went out there to give our offense a chance to get the ball, and they punched it in and got it rolling. That's the things we look for, just going out there on defense and dominating and giving our offense as many chances to put the ball in the end zone."