@GTPaulJohnson Quotes on #GASOvsGT

Sept. 9, 2014

Opening Statement
“We’re excited to be back home and hopefully a little better weather conditions than last week. But we’re excited that we finished the game off the way we did and we’re 2-0. There are a lot of areas for us to improve in and lot of ways to get better so we’re looking forward to getting back to practice to work on that. This is a game against Georgia Southern that, as I’ve said before, they’ve wanted for a long time. It’s finally on the schedule and they’re going to get their opportunity. So we have to be ready to play a good game because they have a good football team and they have a lot of good athletes and team speed. I’m sure they’re going to come in here and play very hard.”

Quayshawn Nealy’s leadership
“I think Quayshawn was disappointed in his performance in the first game. Then he had a good week of practice and came back and played much better against Tulane. He’s got good football awareness. I think he has a good idea of what’s going on around him. And he’s got ability. And when you put those two things together, you’ve got a good chance to make plays. He certainly finds himself in the right spot in the right times and I think you have to credit him for that. He’s got good intuition and a feel for the game.”

Comparing Georgia Southern and Wofford offensively
“If you look at the NC State game, Georgia Southern hit big plays on them. It wasn’t a lot of time-consuming. NC State probably made them punt four or five times. There were more possessions in that game than there were in our Wofford game. I think in our Wofford game there were a lot of four, five and six minute drives on both sides of the ball that just ate the clock up. So when you play a team like that you need to be able to get them off the field. Then you’re the guy churning the clock and keeping it away from them. Now the game could end up with that many possessions but we’ll just see. I’d be surprised.”

Georgia Southern’s recent performances
“Well they’re playing well. We’ll find out on Saturday. I don’t put a lot of stock in us or them or anybody in the first couple of games. I think you have to let it play out and see how it goes. Clearly they have some athletes. They’ve always had athletes. And they play hard. So we have to match that. You could go a step further with the game before the NC State game against Florida. They beat them. Their last three games they’ve played pretty good.”

Georgia Tech’s play in the second half
 “I think we’ve played better in the second half. We’ve found a way to get them off the field. Sometimes the best way to stop them is if you don’t give up the big play they will stop themselves with a turnover or penalties. You’d like to be a little more aggressive, but it’s hard to be beat shutting out teams in the second half. You’re probably not going to lose especially if you are ahead at halftime.”

Shawn Green’s performance coming off injury
“I think Shawn’s played well. He’s a real consistent guy. He’s not going to be flashy. He’s just not that kind of player. He’s consistent. You can count on him to hold his gap and he’s hard to cut off. He can do things in there that the normal people don’t see. And he makes some plays. He’s not going to be a flashy pass rusher or a guy coming off the edge. But he’s a good solid player on the inside.”

Coach Johnson’s time at Georgia Southern
“I had a great time. I was there four years as an assistant coach and we won two national championships. I was the offensive coordinator in 1985 and 1986 and we went 26-4 in those two years. Then as a head coach I was 62-10 and we won two more national championships eight, nine or ten years later. I’ve got some great friends there. It was a great time. I’ve enjoyed wherever I’ve coached. I had a good time at Navy and we had some success there too. We’ve enjoyed everywhere we’ve been. It was a fun time. They get it. They care about football and they want to be good. They do what it takes to be good.”

The potential of the offense
“Potential is a big word. The potential is there. If we get better and play better, we can be good on offense. I agree with you that the potential is there. But we’ve got to play better. You can’t turn the ball over and do those types of things – especially with a young defense. You can’t do that to them. And when you think about it offensively, you’ve got some young guys playing there too. I mean we played with a freshman center half of the game at Tulane. The other guy who’s playing center might as well be a redshirt freshman. Chris Griffin, the left tackle, is a redshirt freshman. It’s not like those guys have played a ton of plays either. They’re getting into it too. The quarterback hasn’t played 200 snaps. He’s going to get better as he goes along. That’s what you’re hoping. You build gradually and correct all of the little things that you can. I’d be far more concerned if I looked over the tape and I saw guys get run over and physically mismatched. That you can’t fix. That’s hard to fix. Wrong steps and bad angles you can fix all of that stuff.” 

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