Coach Gene Chizik Postgame Quotes vs. Alabama

AUBURNTIGERSDOTCOM
AUBURNTIGERSDOTCOM

AUBURNTIGERSDOTCOM

Nov. 28, 2009

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Auburn Postgame Quotes Auburn vs. Alabama, Pat Dye Field at Jordan-Hare Stadium, November 27, 2009

Auburn Head Coach Gene Chizik

"They are a very good football team, but again, I want to say I am really, really proud of every guy who played in an Auburn uniform tonight. We played with a lot of heart and we fought all the way down to the end. We have built a great foundation for what we are going to do in the future, and I am just very proud of our kids. I appreciate our fans supporting our guys as we were running off the field which is not surprising. I am very proud of our team. Obviously, I"m disappointed that we lost. Again, we are looking forward to down the road."

On the start with calling anything and everything to get something going and it worked
"I just felt like we had to be aggressive in this football game. It was things that we prepared for, and we felt very confident that if we executed them well, they had a great chance of them working. We were just going to be aggressive. The onsides kick, we knew that was something that we were going to do, and they were just aggressive with it and we felt like that was the best way to get everybody into the game and into the swing and get some positive things happening early."

What impressed you most about today?
"A lot of things. They hung in there. They really made some big stops at critical times. They played really well. We played real good run defense today. Again, that is what we knew we had to do in this game to even have a chance to be in the game is play really good rush defense. Coach (Ted) Roof did a great job with that, and I thought our defense played really hard all night. We were put in some real bad positions with a couple of turnover situations. We were put into some bad positions with a couple of kick returns that got away from us. I am really proud of everybody on our defense tonight."

Is this game indicative of how much your team has come over the last 11 months?
"I don"t think there is any question. I don"t think you can sit there and watch our football team play against Alabama and not think that. We"ve come a long way. Again, we said at the beginning of this that we were going to build a foundation for what we know is right. We are going to do it right, and I don"t think there is any question."

On Jonathan Evan"s first college start
"I couldn"t be prouder of Jonathan Evans. Let me tell you something. There weren"t any backups after that. I was going in. If you look at our whole defense right now, you can go from beginning to end and find out who we weren"t playing with today, and that"s how well they played. Because there"s a bunch of them right now that weren"t playing today. And the ones that had to play that stepped up, they stepped up and played and they delivered today. I am proud starting with Jonathan Evans."

On Neiko Thorpe going one on one with Julio Jones and not giving up what seemed like any big plays
"Well, one of the things we were trying to do was switch in and out of enough coverages where he wasn"t always man-to-man. If he were on Julio"s side, sometimes we were in zone and sometimes we were in man, just trying to get a healthy mix in there so you could never get a bead on exactly who was on whom ..and if they were, what coverage we were actually playing. I am sure Neiko played well tonight."

On Auburn not having many 2-minute offense situations this year at the end of the half or game to score, and were you disappointed in how you handled that in this game after getting behind?
"The last series, obviously, we would have liked to have gone down there and score a touchdown. Again, they fought down to the end. I"m not disappointed with anybody on our team " nobody."

What did you say to the team after the game?
"I just told them that we are not walking out of here with heads down. We are a family. We are a family when we win. We are a family when we lose. Nobody has to like the outcome of this game, but everybody in that locker room who played did what we asked them to do. They fought for 60 minutes in a game that was really, really tough, and I said that we were going to build on that from there. Unfortunately for the seniors, it is the last home game ever that they are going to play here, but we have a bowl game, and we are going to have another good opponent to play. We have one more game together as a team, and our aim is to go win that game. Again, we are not walking out of this building today with our heads down, but we are going to know right now that the future is bright."