Tommy Tuberville Press Conference Quotes - Nov. 12, 2013

Nov. 12, 2013

Tommy Tuberville Press Conference Quotes
Nov. 12, 2013

Opening Statement:

“We are getting ready for another game this week. We are coming off a big win for us, after only playing one game in about 21 days; we needed to get into some kind of rhythm. Now we have three games in 21 days, so we are going to find out a lot about our team. Last week we held our ground, I thought we played one of our better games through three quarters, and then one quarter we didn’t play as well. But, our execution is getting better on both sides. We have some guys healthy, Chris Burrell is back, who got hurt in the second game of the year, he broke his collarbone and had an operation, and now he’s back, so he’ll have an opportunity to play this week. Trenier Orr, starting corner at the beginning of the year, practiced last week, he should have a chance to play this week. He is a lot better; he also had an operation about eight weeks ago on his knee. So we are getting a few guys back in certain areas that we need back, because we are running out of depth and these two games in eight days once we get to Saturday is going to be pretty crucial to playing a lot of guys on both sides.



“Rutgers is one of the teams I have not yet coached against, I do know that over the last ten years, they are much improved as a football program; they have put a lot of money into a lot of advances. This is the last time that we will play them in our conference; they are going to the Big 10. But very similar to us, they are a running team, a passing team, one back, two back, multiple fronts, they have an experienced quarterback that has played very well in his tenure there. Defensively, again, they are very similar; four-man front, but play multiple looks, man and zone coverage. They have had some injuries, but it looks like they are getting their running back back on offense. They’ve had a week off, due to an open date. We’ve had several times this year where we have had to play a team that has had 14 days to prepare for us. So, it should be interesting going up into the  northeast, don’t know what the weather is going to be like, again, I have not coached up there much, but we are just going to prepare for it like we would here. Our guys are excited about going onto the road, should be a huge crowd, they had a big win against Temple, two weeks ago on the last play of the game. They are working to get bowl eligible, luckily for us we are already bowl eligible, but we want to finish out November strong. We got a good start last week, and we have two more this month, then one more in December, and we will finish it off, but we are still in the race for the championship with only one loss. We can’t control our own destination, but in terms of bowl games and how we will finish in the rankings at the end of the year, the only thing we can do is go out and play the best we can, and win as many as we can. Our guys yesterday had a day off, which I don’t normally give on a Sunday. We had practice yesterday however, we had a good practice, good team meetings, and we will have another good practice today. It will be a little cool, so we will go inside and start using our bubble this week, and mainly use it for concentration, and get a good game plan in, on all three phases and go play this Saturday at noon.”

On if they changed anything in the run game vs. SMU going into the third quarter:

“I think it was a commitment we challenged them on the sideline we challenged them all week knowing that if we give a lot of possessions to a team like SMU they are going to score at least every possession whether three points or a touchdown or every other possession. We kind of took the air out of it, holding the ball 22 minutes in the second half compared to their eight, they only had three possessions they punted once and they two 95-yard drives. But running the football I think it’s crucial to have and success against all teams whether you run it or not just the ability to run it and the defensive coordinator on the other side understands that hey they can run or throw, and I think it gives us an edge. So running the football has been good to us all year long we’ve been up and down, to my amazement we are leading the conference in rushing and I would’ve not thought that but we have gotten better and better as the year has gone on. (Jordan) Luallen has been a big part of that and all three running backs have played pretty well; Hosey (Williams) played an excellent game last week he is a guy that’s got very good vision and understand how to run a couple of running plays that we run. It’s good to have a fresh guy every week to play running back but our running game has gotten better because our offensive line has really worked on it hard throughout the year. We were very average at the beginning of the year and we’ve gotten much better and it’s all going back to number one calling plays but also working your technique and fundamentals in the offensive line during the week.”

On the difference about preparing to play two conference road games:

“It’s much a mindset, I’m one of those that talk your players all week about relaxing, enjoying the trip but understanding it’s a business trip. It’s not a trip were you’re going to go and just play it’s something you have to focus on even more than you do when your home. It’s hard to play on the road it’s hard to concentrate in a different environment, traveling 70 guys, hotels, playing on a different field; it sometimes takes its toll but you find out more about your football team when you’re on the road. You find out how good you are how consistent you are and how focus your players get. So last time we played on the road against Memphis we were pretty good not great we got to improve to have a chance win either of these two games coming up. We will play two teams that are probably the better of teams that we’ve played this year. So it will be challenge for us to go to New Jersey and play whether it’s going to be cold or warm or snow or rain it doesn’t make any difference. We just have to prepare and I think you set that whole tone in your meetings all week long with your coaches and talk about it at practice and understand what you are getting into.”

On the biggest reason for Brendon Kay’s improvement throughout the season:

“I think he has just gotten more comfortable in what we’re doing and I think that ability to put both of those slots in the game has really helped us after the fourth game of the year. He has a lot of confidence in those guys and a lot of times we throw check downs to them and meaning it’s a shorter pass, if he goes through his reads and outside guys aren’t open or the right slots not open he knows the other guys are very confident if they get close to him they will catch the ball. So Shaq (Washington) and (Anthony) McClung have really done a good job with Brendon, and Brendon has been able to get the ball there and go through his reads and again you have to understand he is experienced. He made a couple of bad throws last week  that we would like to have back but he usually doesn’t force the ball and he is going to get it to the guy that is more open than anybody else. But I’m proud of Brendon his percentage of completion is outstanding he usually makes all the good reads and he has been beat up. Over the last few weeks he has gotten a little bit better each week and this week I think he will be stronger than the last two weeks but he has played through a lot of adversity and I think the running game has helped and Jordan. So it’s been a complete years of work to help Brendon become a better quarterback with all the other pieces coming together helping him out because you can’t do it by yourself has a quarterback. He is not the type of quarterback that they had the other day at SMU, throw it 50-60-70 times a game and he has the arm to do it but I just think his movement in the pocket is not quite as good as that other guy Garrett Gilbert. I mean that kid can run and make decisions but that’s their offense they care not to run the ball and I think running the football has helped Brendon with more time in the pocket, we’ve only given up nine sacks which has to be close in the top ten in the country and that’s amazing as many times as we’ve thrown the ball.”

On how important it is to get to the QB to force turnovers:

“Yeah he has turn the ball over, we know how that is we’re close to the bottom of the pack in the country of turnover ratio of being on the plus side and the games that we’ve lost we has just turned it over. They probably can go back and look at theirs and he would love to have some throws back and some fumbles. But the thing about it is he makes up for those plays; he is a guy that can make a big play even though he is kind of like Brendon (Kay). So you go look at last week he made a couple of mistakes in the Temple game and got them behind and they caught up and on a fourth and five last play of the game on a blitz he knew he was going to take a hit but he the guy perfectly down the sideline for a touchdown that won the game. So very similar quarterbacks he and Brendon this week in terms of playing quarterback, experience, using your running backs, putting the ball around field and get different receivers to make big plays. But turnovers for them have hurt them and turnovers for us have hurt us.”

On not generating takeaways:

“We haven’t gotten many takeaways and I think there have been games were we have gotten a few more but like last week we turned it over three times and they didn’t have any. You’re not going to beat an SMU if you do that very often I mean that just doesn’t happen we had to play almost every other place to make that happen. Which it was in our running game which I thought was the deciding factor. But it’s just one of those things you go in spurts of turnovers and sometimes they just happen. Brendon threw two interceptions last week and he threw into coverage through the wrong guy and made a bad decision. As long as you make enough good decisions to make up for those you have a chance and he is good enough to do that as well as Nova is good enough to do that for Rutgers. But you can’t put an inexperience guy in the game and he makes a couple of bad decisions and he is going to go into the tank and not pull the trigger the rest of the game. So that’s the difference between an experience player and a non-experience player; so we can’t go these next three games and not get any turnovers and say we’re going to win all three of them that’s not going to happen. We’ve got to be able to get some turnovers and makes so things happen and we were close to getting a couple of interceptions last week but when somebody throws it 50 times and you don’t get an interception that means you’re not doing a very good job with underneath coverage. We didn’t play that much man coverage, man coverage you usually don’t get a lot of interceptions because you’re not looking at the ball you’re playing the receiver more; it usually comes in over thrown passes and zones and somebody tipping the ball and getting an interception. So mainly we have to be better at breaking on the ball playing receivers closer playing a lot better zone coverage pass rush and force bad throws. Even though we had a pretty decent pass rush last week we didn’t force any awkward throws from their quarterback so it’s a team defense and it doesn’t happen because you’re secondary and linebackers, you can also blame you D-line for not creating turnovers.

On what the magic number is for them in the turnover column:

“I would say three, if you get three you really won’t worry about the other team because if they get one or two or possibly three it’s a wash but you can’t go zero and three like we did last week and have chance. You can go back and look at it there miss two fields goals is like a turnover and then we kicked the onside kick and got the onside kick and so they are not turnovers but they’re pretty close to it.”

On the accuracy of the defense being highly ranked the majority of the year:

“We’ve played pretty well, we’ve played pretty good defense considering some of the situations we have been in this year with injuries. But I really don’t look at the yardage, if you look at the game last week they had over 400 yards passing and I look at the points scored and we’re around 18 a game but I would like to be around 15 a game. I think that is more realistic of points scored because sometimes it’s unrealistic if they have made two of their field goals last week that would have been 31 points and we would have been on the other side of the win lost column. But as a head coach I would like to keep it around 15 throughout the year, some are going to go a little higher and some might hopefully get a little less but if you keep it around 15 I’d say your successful on defense. I think sometimes you look at the yardage gain, rushing and passing it has a lot to do with the other teams you are playing but the points are more of a standard of how you should go and play on defense.”