Post-Game Quotes

Nov. 13, 2010

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GEORGIA TECH HEAD COACH Paul Johnson

Opening Statement
“Well it was a tough game. We made way too many mistakes against a team as talented as Miami. We dug ourselves a hole that we could never get out of. They had the two big drives to open the game, one for 90 yards and I guess another one for 88 yards, and we didn’t answer. On offense we would move the ball, but we couldn’t finish. We didn’t have anybody today that would finish the play. When we would get over on their side of the field, we would either bog down or get a penalty or do something to keep us from getting into the end zone. We had a couple of fumbles. We just got beat. We got beat in pretty much every facet of the game. They beat us.”

On Tevin Washington’s performance
“I thought he played okay. It’s like I said going into the game. He did some decent things, ran the offense okay. He can’t make up for ten other guys, he’s got to have some help.”

On Orwin Smith’s fumble
“It looked like maybe he took his eye off of it and looked up. You’ve got to just fall on the ball, you don’t try to pick it up. We talk about that a lot, but you’ve just got to do it.”

On Miami’s two long drives of 88 yards
“It’s a little frustrating, especially when, in the very first series, we had them third down and whatever. The times we did get them stopped when the game was in doubt, we would have a penalty to give them a first down and it was disappointing.”

On mental aspects of the game
It’s hard to say. I think today we had some issues there, but I think we were also overmatched a little bit if you were watching the game.”

On scoring, getting the momentum, only to allow a quick score
“It’s been the tale of our season. I could go game after game. You try to get a little momentum back, what happens, the very next possession they score. This time they scored in one play. What happened? I’m not going to call anybody out, but we had a guy bust is what happened. That still doesn’t mean it’s got to go 75 yards. We were in two-deep, nobody shielded two and we bit on the run fake, but you still ought to get the guy down.”

On what to play for
“You keep playing. You don’t quit. What are you going to do? You don’t have any other alternatives. You either keep playing or you quit. We aren’t going to quit. I can promise you that I’m not going to quit. We still have the chance to salvage and have a winning season. We have two games left, we are going to play, play them out, see if we can get better, play better next week. We have to put more points on the scoreboard. We had over 400 yards ourselves, and to get 10 points is ridiculous. We should have had more points than that. Could we have scored enough to win? I don’t know. But we should have had more than 10, that’s for sure. You keep playing, try to find the positives, and go off that.

On what positives you saw in the game
“I’m sure when we watch the tape there are going to be some positives. I thought Tevin did some decent things at times. Anthony Allen ran the ball hard at times. There were plays that looked pretty good. We just made too many mistakes. We forced them to punt three times, so that was a positive. There are positives in there, you just have to find them. Stopped them on the goal line, a couple of times. That was a positive.

On Kevin Cone’s performance
“Kevin made some nice catches. He made a nice play on a slant, and the nice touchdown catch. We will watch the tape, I think he probably played pretty good.”

MIAMI HEAD COACH RANDY SHANNON

Opening statement
“This was a big win for us today here at Georgia Tech. We gave a tremendous effort on both sides of the ball, especially up front. The offensive line did a great job. We had another week of rushing for 200 yards, and four different running backs scored touchdowns. They just controlled the game. Defensive line-wise, for a team to get 10 tackles for loss against an option team like Georgia Tech is very hard to do, and causing two turnover was really big for us.

“It was just a phenomenal effort. The last time we were up here, it was not a very good turnout for us. The guys that were on the football team then that are here today really responded. It shows how much character this football team has and how hard they’ve worked. I told the guys before the game to just concern yourself with what you can control today, and that was playing Georgia Tech. Have fun playing the game today, play the way you’re supposed to, and get your identity where you want it.

“Stephen Morris did a tremendous job of just managing the game. He was getting the ball into the wide receivers hands, giving it to the running backs, throwing it to the tight ends. All-around, he played very well today. If we continue to do this, we can be a very special football team.”

On the importance of establishing the ground game and the performance of the running backs
“I saw some things from our offensive line and from (fullback) Pat Hill. They were blocking up front and doing a great job of opening up holes. No matter what the running backs were that we had back there, the offensive line was tremendous today. They were blocking, the tight ends were blocking. You give those guys a little crease, and the running backs did a great job of running downfield. The offensive line is getting into a rhythm. We’ve been physical all year long and haven’t backed off from the pads. They’re getting into a groove with the combo blocks and coming off double teams and doing those things at the right time.”

On the importance of Hankerson’s TD reception in the third quarter
“At that point in time they had almost scored. He made a big play, made one guy miss and outran the whole secondary, which was really big for him and for us. He has come up with some big plays in big situations two weeks in a row, which is tremendous for us.

“I’ve never said he didn’t have good speed. Hank has enough speed. He and Mike Irvin are from the same high school. They said Mike Irvin was a 4.65 runner, but when he got the football in his hands, nobody could catch him. Same with Hankerson. People say he doesn’t have the speed, but when he has the ball in his hands, he can get past people. Hankerson has enough speed to make some things special for him.”

On being a position where next week’s Virginia Tech game has a lot at stake
“This game right here was big for us as a football team. Last time we were up here, it wasn’t a very good showing. A lot of those guys were here then, and those guys really wanted to come out and play well. But as I told them, worry about what you can control. We’re going to enjoy this victory tonight, then Sunday we’ll come back and review film and start on Virginia Tech.”

“We’re very excited. That’s the thing about ACC football, it always comes down to the last week of football. This is a very special time for all of us.”

On how having the two most productive offensive games of the season the last two weeks
“Running the football, and up front. They’re starting to click. People don’t realize, you’ve got Seantrel Henderson, a true freshman (at right tackle), and he splits time with Jermaine Johnson, a red-shirt freshman. And you’ve got Brandon Linder that comes in at tight end and also plays guard, that splits time with Harland Dunn. You’ve got Brandon Washington (right guard), who is a first-year starter, Orlando Franklin playing a new position, and Tyler Horn is a new guy at center. So there comes a time when you’ve got to get those guys in a groove, and at the end of the season, if you run the football, you’ll probably win a lot of games. In the last two weeks, we’ve done a good job of getting in a rhythm with the blocks and running the football.

GEORGIA TECH ASSISTANT COACHES AND PLAYERS

Defensive Coordinator Al Groh’s opening statement
“One of the things that you have to do to play really good defense is to be a team that doesn’t make many mistakes. Some of the mistakes that we made today were harmful in going against the team. Against a big, strong talented team [like Miami], those mistakes shone as you all noticed. For example we had three `get off the field situations’ where we kept the team on the field with penalties. We just have to play better than what we played.”

Groh on Leonard Hankerson
“Obviously he had a big game bringing two long plays. We thought he was the best receiver in the league coming in and he played like one.”

Groh on the first two touchdowns
“The first touchdown was just a missed tackle. That should have just been an eight yard gain, but the tackle was missed. The second one was one of those mistake plays. If it was played properly we would have had someone where the ball was thrown.”

Groh on making adjustments
“When the other team moves the ball like that you are always making adjustments. If you don’t, you are a fool. If you try to continue going the same way you are going to get the same results. We have a so-called game plan at the start of the game which is very detailed, but it is just the way that you start the journey. There are going to be detours along the way and changes that you need to make and those are made sometimes in between plays and certainly in-between series. The idea that you can wait until halftime to make those adjustments means that it is too late. We were doing some adjusting right from the start.”

Groh on Miami’s physicality
“Sure. Clearly. We knew that coming in on a year-to-year basis that is the case. You look at the size of some of those players and the match ups and say whoever had to line up in front of #77 is going to have a tough time. The good news is that he will be there for three more years. We said to the players going into this game that we aren’t going to get any taller or heavier going in to this game, we are who we are. To deal with that there is a way that we have to play. No. 1 we have to play a clean game. We cannot magnify what they are able to accomplish based on their skill and add to that with mistakes. Stops are going to be hard to get against them. We had three stop downs where we helped them to stay on the field and points resulted in each of those.”

Groh on the feeling after a loss
“Everything that we do for 365 days a year, on the 12 opportunities that you have to walk out into the stadium, the feeling of satisfaction that you get from the accomplishment of a win, that is what it is all for. So when you don’t, I think each time that it happens that you have to walk out after putting it all in, there is a significant sense of loss. That is what life is all about.”

Tevin Washington on his performance
“I think that I tried to come out and execute the offense as best as I could. I just tried to put us in a position to win the game. I think I did alright today, there are a lot of positives that I can build off of, I just have to do a better job of keeping the team in position to win the game next week.

Washington on his thoughts before the game
“I was just thinking stay calm and collected and go in there and handle my business. I wasn’t nervous at all. Joshua [Nesbitt] talked me up through the whole game and just told me to stay calm and to help the guys on offense keep their head up.”

Washington on Miami’s defense
“They did a good job but I think that we stopped ourselves a little bit. There isn’t anything that we cant correct though this week in practice.”

Kevin Cone on his touchdown grab
“It was an over formation and it was kind of funny, I didn’t hear the play, I actually didn’t know what the play was. I was asking Tyler [Melton] what the play was and he was already lined up. I just ran up the field and went out and I got open and he threw it to me. Thankfully I got open and scored. It was the route that I should have run, and I should have run it better, but it worked.”

Cone on Tevin Washington
“I thought he carried himself excellently. Everytime we were in the huddle he was telling us `let’s go, let’s pick it up’. He never gives up fighting and he just led us today, we just killed ourselves today making mistakes.”

Cone on the Tevin-Kevin combo
“I hope it’s the new combo. Tevin just through it to me and I made a play. I don’t think it is the new combo but I would like to think so.”

Mario Butler on the loss
“It really hurt. It was one of those things where we thought we had a great week of practice and preparation and we got out there and it just didn’t carry out to the field. It really hurts especially being a senior. Time is really winding down. It seemed like it was one thing after another today. Especially with me when I got the pass interference play on third down, I was mad at myself because I knew exactly what route was coming, I just jumped it too early.”

Butler on the year
“This year has been a wild ride. Sometimes we have been up, sometimes we have been down. The great thing about it is that it is football and we should use everything, wins, losses, ties, and learn from it and that is what we are going to do for this one.”

Dominique Reese on the Miami offense
“We went over everything that they did in practice this week. There was nothing new or nothing that caught us by surprise. We just have to make plays.”

Reese on Tevin Washington
“He did a great job today, I am proud of him. The defense just didn’t help him as much as he helped us. Today’s outcome was just a product of mistakes and big plays. They made more big plays than us and we made more mistakes than them.”

Phil Smith on Tevin Washington
“Tevin is a great warrior. I see every attribute of Josh in him. He is a hell of a football player. He will just put his head in there. He didn’t get scared today, he didn’t get scared last week and we can see that in his eyes and that is something that puts a lot of confidence in us when we can see him be confident in what he does. He is confident because he is good. He balled out today.”

Smith on not being able to get the ball into the endzone
“It is very frustrating. It really makes me mad. It is something that you have to work through. It happens to everyone. Everyone goes through slumps. We just have to work harder. It is something that we have to take a look at and fix for next week, and next year. We have to look inside ourselves and say this isn’t right, we have to get this right.”

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