afternoon everybody. I appreciate you being here today. As usual, on
Monday we got back into our normal schedule, or at least that was our
goal since we faced
a lot of challenges traveling back to Columbia following the Indiana
game. That was the first time in 37 years as a coach that I did not
return home the same night of an away game. I thought we really handled
the challenges that we faced well. Our goal was
to take care of our players following the game. We wanted to get them
back here, get them fed and let them get some quality rest. I think the
staff did such a great job of doing that. We re-organized some schedules
this year, and our Sundays' are filled with
activities such as players working out, study groups, meetings and
practices. My big thing was to get done with the post-game Indiana
activities on time yesterday, and I think we did that. We definitely
adjusted some things when looking over everything. I think
we are right where we should be. Our focus now to needs to be on
Arkansas State. I think as a football team we are just focusing on
improving and get after it tomorrow afternoon at practice."
On how the team's depth at wide receiver helps the offense…
are running a number of plays lately. We almost ran 100 plays against
Indiana, and that was with really the last eleven minutes of the game
on the ball and waiting for the game to be over with. We were fortunate
to be in that position. We are playing a lot of players, and I think our
depth has helped us. There have been a lot of guys contributing within
that position. For the most part, I am pleased
with their abilities to make plays. I think we need to focus a little
more though, on gaining more yards after the catch."
On Dorial Green-Beckham's first career 100-yard game…
the game, and after we win, it is a big deal. It is great that it
happened. He has been working to get better, and you can see that. His
throughout the game caught like 11 passes, and I think he had eight of
them. He is talented, but the other guys did some good things as well. I
am pleased with the whole group overall. They held on to the football,
and it is important that they continue to
make big plays."
On James Franklin's journey back from injuries to his hot start in 2013…
thought James was going to be a great quarterback. Coming off shoulder
surgery, it all changed a little bit, but it does not surprise me at
all. I know
it surprises a lot of people out there. He came off a great sophomore
year. We are really consistent with the sophomores we have. But I am
going to say it again so it is clear. I had more injuries with James in
one year than I did in quarterback injuries combined
in my 21 years of coaching. It certainly was not a lack of effort on his
On matching Dan Devine for career wins at Mizzou and nearing Don Faurot…
of all, I have tremendous respect for Dan Devine. I had the chance
after I got the job to talk to him on the phone for a little while. That
a lot to me. I met him once years and years ago. Just to have your name
thrown up there with theirs is a tremendous honor. With that being said,
I just want to continue to become a better team and focus on Arkansas
State. This is what I am and this is what
I have done."
On Kony Ealy's ability to get his hands up during passing…
think he is gifted a little bit there with that ability. It is kind of a
part of him. He has great range as a player. He is just a big guy, and
size overall. It is fun to see him batting down a couple balls down, and
taking it out. It was a big play for us against Indiana. It was 14-14
and then we just scored, and he flipped the game back right around for
us. He got us back up 28-14 after that play,
and I liked how our football team handled the situation. It is huge when
your defense can make those kinds of plays."
Senior Quarterback, James Franklin
On the changes (if any) made after the interceptions against Indiana…
really. On the first one, I just tried to beat the safety, and on the
second one it was just a misread and a miscommunication on my part. It
was really not
too big of a deal. I was more upset because there were a lot of throws
that I missed, even though I was seeing the field really well. That was
really the only thing that was frustrating."
On seeing things on the field slower…
seems like a lot has slowed down. It is like I needed contacts until
now. It just seems like your mind works a lot faster, and more thoughts
are going through
my head. For example, different possibilities on a certain throw. I
think things like should I back shoulder this, make it a jump ball, etc.
Those are the things that go through my head."
On the impact of the team playing better, when there's a higher level of play at quarterback…
definitely think so. It helps the offense out with really being smart
with the ball. Not having to make great plays, but catching the ball for
and getting the ball to the tailbacks and letting them do what they do."
Senior Linebacker, Andrew Wilson
On the defense not having to blitz often…
defensive line is doing a great job. I think we have had a lot of
interceptions because the defensive line is getting after the
quarterback. We have not had to
blitz much, since the guys up front are doing a great job."
Senior Wide Receiver, Marcus Lucas
On James Franklin's play this season…
think he has overcame a lot of injuries. Now, he is just playing the
game, staying healthy and really playing the game to the best of his
On James Franklin's accuracy this season…
has taken a lot of time this offseason doing a lot of reads, and not
centering or predetermining who he is going to throw to. He has done a
good job of letting
it come to him during the game, and I think that is helping him out. He
is really relaxed back there and not overdoing anything."
On James Franklin's sliding on a run…
like to see him slide. It is fun to make fun of him when he does that.
But overall, I like to see him run. He is a playmaker, and a fun kid to
watch. When he is
running and scrambling out, it is fun to try to get into scramble drill
mode and things like that."
Senior Defensive Lineman, Kony Ealy
On his ability to get his hand on the ball…
is something I have always had since high school. As I go on through
college play, and observe NFL players, I idolize players like J.J. Watt.
It just helps out
all the way around."
On being named SEC Defensive Line Player of the Week…
is just an award. I definitely recognize it because it is an award that
is not given to everybody. I am grateful for that, but I have to focus
on our next opponent,
get out there and continue to get better."
472 Craighead Co. 766
Jonesboro, AR 72401