Post-Game Quotes

Nov. 30, 2013

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GEORGIA TECH HEAD COACH Paul Johnson

Opening Statement
“It was a tough game. I was proud of our guys effort. It was a hard game to lose. It was a gut wrenching game. It would have been for either side. Really not a whole lot to say about it.”

On missed chances to score touchdowns instead of field goals
“You can’t score a touchdown every time you get the ball. You’d like to and that’s the goal, but that’s probably not realistic. The one possession that hurt was the interception. But you had to play almost perfect on offense and that’s hard to do.”

On Vad Lee’s performance
“I thought he played well. I thought he had a really good game. He made some plays. He also made some nice checks. I thought he managed the game well. He got pressure on the interception and that was the only one that I could think of that was really a poor decision. But he played very well.”

Was passing that often part of the game plan or was it dictated by Georgia’s defense
“They were selling out to play the run with the corners and safeties.”

On Georgia’s offensive line’s performance
“After the last possession of the first half, we never really got pressure on him. He had all day to throw the ball. That was a killer.”

GEORGIA TECH PLAYERS

Vad Lee R-SR QB #2
     On his play
“We had a good gameplan coming in. We knew that we were going to try to hit some big pass plays, and we did in the beginning. If only we could have hit some of those plays towards the end where we could have finished. We had a good game plan. It was there. All I had to do was throw the receivers the ball, and they made it happen.”

“I’m all about wins. I wanted to play hard and win this game, especially for our seniors. I can imagine how they feel right now not being able to beat Georgia. That game matters a lot here and it was special. The game was special with a great atmosphere and we really wanted to win. We really wanted to win.”

Robert Godhigh R-SR AB #25
      On his receiving plays
They were playing man (coverage). I was just trying to win the one on one matchup and it worked out most of the time.”

Jeremiah Attaochu SR DE #45     
      Was trying to pressure QB Hutson Mason in the game plan?
“It definitely was. We saw some things we could do early, of course they made some adjustments, but for the most part we were able to get decent pressure.”

DeAndre Smelter JR WR #15     
      On his second touchdown
“I just saw how he was playing me. He was playing me kind of outside so I just wanted to give him a little bit outside and cut off at a good angle so nobody else could get to the ball.

Adam Gotsis SO DL #96
     On watching the last play
“It was give it all or nothing. It felt like your heart has been ripped out of you. It’s such an emotional game as a rivalry. First thought was to the seniors and we couldn’t get it done for them.”

Ray Beno R-SR OL #64
      Was tonight the best game for the offense this year?
“I think so. Obviously well have to go back and watch tape. It was the best effort game we had all year. I think we did a pretty good job. Georgia’s got a decent program.”

GEORGIA HEAD COACH MARK RICHT

Opening Statement
“I’m very thankful for the victory. It was a great game. We’ve had a bunch of those kind of games all year; a lot of close ones, a lot of that have just come down to the wire – last play, last series, overtime, twice. It’s been one of those years for us. I want to give credit to Georgia Tech and the job they did. They came out really ready to play and took that 20-point lead. They were playing extremely well. We were just fighting for our lives. It was good that we got seven there right before the half, and have the chance to have the ball to start the second half and only be down two scores was a good thing. We did have a touchdown called back, but we ended up getting three on the board. Marshall Morgan made every kick, which we had to have. I’m proud of him, our snapper, holder and the protection there. So many little things had to go just right for us to fight our way back in there.

“Defense in the second half did a good job holding them to seven points before overtime began. There were some big plays that happened, but obviously the play prior to the fourth-down attempt at the end was big. Josh Harvey I thought played extremely well. You got to defeat blocks especially in the perimeter and go make a tackle, I thought Josh did a pretty good job of that. It was a great game. Obviously it was good for Hutson [Mason] to get a victory in his first start. He learned it the hard way. He wasn’t totally comfortable in the beginning. Georgia Tech was running some twists and I think Hutson didn’t feel real comfortable in the pocket. Later on, we had to keep the middle of that pocket safe for him he made some great throws and we had some guys make some great catches. I thought Coach Bobo called a great game. Really the whole game was so close.”

On `stealing’ the game from Georgia Tech as they seemed to have everything going for them…
“I knew early on offensively that we had some people open, but we couldn’t stay in there long enough to get the ball thrown to those guys. I felt like it was going to be a matter of time before we could make some things happen offensively. Georgia Tech played great. They scored four times in the first half. You never know how important it is to force a field goal. When we had it at 20 again, it gives you a lot more hope than when it is at 28. It was just a good game.”

On Todd Gurley’s performance particularly in overtime…
“We challenged Todd and we challenged the line. We decided we were going to run our bread and butter plays; plays that we believe in the most. We almost threw a pass on the first play of the second possession, but we decided we were going to run that ball on first down one more time and just see. We had the success on the drive prior. Even though, there are some things you might like in the passing game, there is always something that could go wrong. When you run it you can get stopped, but still have more downs to play. It just happened that we hit a crease and they were in a pressure. Thankfully we got the ball handed off and right up the gut.”

What helped settle Hutson down in the second half…
“I think getting the score helped. I saw a couple times that they were running some twists. When you twist with the defensive line, usually there is one guy who penetrates and the other loops around. Early on, the penetrators were pushing the pocket too much in his face and I think that was causing him to flush. Later on, we stopped the penetrator pretty good and it made it tougher for them to get some pressure. I think once the center of that pocket got solidified it helped him out a lot.”

What did you do to slow Georgia Tech’s passing game down…
“I don’t know. We really didn’t do much to slow it down in my opinion. I think we just got a little bit more pressure. I don’t think we even got a sack in the game. We might have covered just a little bit tighter. They threw the ball very well. When you got to stop the run the way they run it, you really don’t have any free safety help. IT’s just man-to-man. Then if you have any kind of play action at all, you’re trying like mad to stop the run, guys spring free and get open. It’s hard to put pressure on the quarterback if you’re trying to stop the run. You’re playing the run, you’re not playing the pass. That’s the beauty of what they do. When you can throw and catch like they did, it’s a scary looking thing for our defense.”

GEORGIA PLAYERS

QB Hutson Mason: “Whew, man. That last ball hung in the air a long, long time. I thought it was going to get batted around and someone was going to catch it and run it back in. That’s exactly what I was thinking. Man, not a lot to say but we got it.”
“This is what it’s all about. All those times when I thought about transferring and sitting and talking with Coach Richt in his office, this game, this type of game is what I dreamed of. This was the kind of game I dreamed of being a part of. I’m so thankful for this opportunity, and I’m just glad to be a Bulldog.”
WR Michael Bennett:
“It’s a little bit of redemption for the way the Auburn game ended to have this win. We’ve obviously got to start out better, but we were down 20 against Auburn and we were down 20 tonight and we came back. To see our team come back the way it did was just amazing. We knew we could do it; we just needed to execute.”
LB Ramik Wilson: “That ball was up there for awhile. I hit it as hard as I could trying to make a play to end this game. That’s all I was thinking, knock it down. I’m so proud of us for coming back from 20-0. We’re relentless. We never gave up. It was a long, hard game, but we kept fighting and playing Georgia football. When you finish the drill, good things happen.”
CB Sheldon Dawson: “One thing about this team, no matter who we’re playing, we’re going to keep fighting hard and never quit. If you do that, you never know what can happen. It’s not about if you fall, because you’re going to fall in football. It’s about getting back up. I’m so happy for this team. … I was guarding my man near the sideline on that last play, and I bought a ticket and watched the whole thing. It was worth it.”

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