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Paul Johnson Press Conference Quotes

Nov. 20, 2012

Opening Statement

“Good morning. Seems like the season has flown by in a lot of ways now that we’re here headed into the rivalry game in the last week. I think we’ve got some momentum in the last half of the year. Certainly we’ll have to play our best game of the year to have a chance in Athens on Saturday. I think they’re very talented. They’ve improved. As you watched the tape, they’ve gotten better as the year’s gone on. Certainly defensively they’ve gotten much better the last four or five games. Offensively, the quarterback is very experienced and talented player. The true freshman tailbacks are very good and a good receiving corps. Defensively, they’ve probably got six or seven NFL guys, at least, on that defense. The linebacking corps is physical and fast. Jarvis Jones gets a lot of notoriety, and rightfully so; he’s an awfully good player. But Alec Ogletree jumps off the film at you — the things that that guy can do; the way he runs, and makes plays. He’s a special player as well. The two safeties are good. They’ve got a lot of good football players on their team.”

What did you see in their defense against Georgia Southern?

“They played their base defense, which is what they’ve done against us the last two years. They didn’t do anything a whole lot differently. We’ve played each other enough now that I don’t think they’ll be a big guessing game as to what we’re doing and what they’re doing. It’ll come down to execution and maybe having the right thing on at the right time. They’ve got their plan and they’re gonna run with it.”

Is this the best defense that you’ve played against?

“I don’t know. I’ll probably have a better idea after the game. They’re plenty talented. I don’t think you’re going to play anybody with more talent than them. “

On how Georgia Sothern’s offense approached playing Georgia…

“All I had to do was put on last year’s tape and see the same thing. It’s similar. Georgia Southern lined up in a lot of formations that we haven’t used or is a little bit different. But the nuts and bolts are the same so we’ll have an idea.”

On Orwin Smith’s status…

“We’ll see. Right now, we’re thinking Orwin is going to play. But if he doesn’t, somebody else will have to step up. We don’t have a set plan for the way we use Orwin. We just kinda play and somebody else would be in that spot. “

On the vibe on campus…

“I don’t know so much about campus. Cleary our team and our program know it’s a big game. It’s a rivalry game. I’m not really around (the students) that much to have an answer for it. The guys could tell you.”

On Orwin Smith’s impact…

“Anytime you take a player of his magnitude out, clearly you’d miss him. But there is some depth at that position. Clearly, Robbie Godhigh has played well. Synjyn Days, Deon Hill, BJ Bostic, Tony Zenon – all those guys have played so it’s not as If you’d have to put someone out there who hasn’t played in a game. “

On the play of the A-Backs…

“They’ve gotten better. Robbie’s (Godhigh) played really well. We moved Synjyn in there now that he’s getting the grasp. He’s got some fundamental things he’s got to get better at – they all do, but there are some good athletes in there.”

Is Synjyn at A-Back for good?


On A-Backs like Tony Zenon getting more touches…

“Can’t play `em all. It’s like I said when someone asked before. Tony will get his chance. He hasn’t done anything wrong, but right now, by the flow of the game, you’ve got Orwin, you’ve got Robbie, BJ, Deon, you can only play two at a time. You don’t necessarily want to take Orwin and Robbie out of the game a lot because they’re [playing well. Synjyn played about 30 snaps. BJ played 8, Dean played about 10. That’s kind of the way it went. The next week, Tony could snaps somebody else got. It’s just kind of the way it happens.”

On the play of Georgia QB Aaron Murray…

“I think they’ve done a good job with pressure and he hasn’t had a lot of pressure. The teams that get to him with a four-man rush that are physical and better, like any quarterback, they’re going to struggle. The teams that they’ve played can’t get to him. If you don’t get to him, and he has time, he’s going to pick you apart.”

On Maryland leaving the ACC…

“I honestly hadn’t thought about it. In the landscape of college sports now, it’s going to happen more than you know. And if they feel like that’s the best for them, then that’s what they need to do. They’ve been a part of the of the ACC for a long time, and the ACC is going to be here for a long time. All that stuff is done above my pay grade, so I don’t worry about it.”

On Georgia playing Georgia Southern last week…

“It’s probably better than looking at them play someone with a completely different offense, but at the same time we could have put on last year’s tape and saw the same thing. So if anything, it probably helps them with the speed of it. They’ll be accustomed to the speed of it more so than if they hadn’t played it I’d think. Anytime you play something two weeks in a row, you’re probably going to be better at it.”

On the media’s perception of Tech playing well against two straight teams coming off bye weeks…

“It will. Until the next time we play someone with a week off and then they beat you, and it’ll come back again. People are going to think and say what they want. I’ve learned to quit arguing with people a long time ago about that. They have their opinions, I have mine.”

On feeling ill…

“I have, and it’s going around the team still. We still have several guys with it. It’s an issue.”

On playing well this year on the road…

“I don’t know. I don’t dread playing on the road. Personally I like it sometimes. I think for us, the way, the year was going; it was good to get on the road two weeks in a row. I have some ideas why we play better there than here, but I won’t tell you why. If we don’t play well up there Saturday, we’ll get embarrassed. They’re awfully good.”

On Izaan Cross, and the flu going around the team…

“He’s OK. This think it has normally been lasting about 3 to 4 days with our guys. He’s clear. What we’re hoping is we don’t come down with a large group – we’ve got a few with it now – you just don’t want a large group to get it Wednesday or Thursday. That`d be the killer.”

On the play of Adam Gotsis

“Adam’s getting better every week. He’s got a really bright future and going to be a really good player. I said in here a few weeks ago that we’ve got some young defensive linemen that are going to be pretty good. It’s a process. He’s a freshman and he’s learning every week. He’s got the right attitude and the right skill set. He wants to be good. He’s going to work at it, but he’s got the physical tools to be good at before he leaves here.”

On Tech peaking at the right time…

“We played pretty well offensively the last couple of games. We’ve played OK defensively in spots. The second halves have been better. We’ll see. It’s going to be a huge challenge. You don’t want to get into a game with them where you have to score every possession. They’re too good on defense for that. So we’ve got to find a way to get them stopped some this week.”

On the play of the offensive line…

“The last few games we’ve probably played as well as we have since I’ve been here. What they’re doing is they’re playing hard, they’re getting a lot of guys cut off and they’re getting downfield and getting a lot of guys on the ground. When you do that, it gives you a chance to hit some big plays.”


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