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Post-Game Quotes

Nov. 1, 2014


Opening Statement
“Well I’m proud of our team. I thought we got contributions out of all three phases today. Certainly we played better defensively than we have the past couple of weeks. I was proud of them and encouraged by that. We left some out there offensively, but you have to give Virginia some credit because they are a pretty good defensive football team. Happy to get out of here 35-10. I don’t think anybody has beaten them like that all year. We have things we can work on moving forward, but just happy the game turned out the way it did.”

On Patrick Gamble playing defensive end
“I think he made some plays. He lost contain a couple times, but he made some plays, especially in the running game. If you can’t run the ball it’s hard to win, and we did a really good job of taking the run away from them.”

On Georgia Tech’s rush defense
 “I think we tackled a little better. We tried to be aggressive, and we played a lot of man coverage. I think our defensive coaches had a good plan. We stacked the box pretty good. The bottom line is we beat some blocks and tackled better.”

On Synjyn Days at B-back
“He did some good things. He made some plays. He made a heck of a catch on that touchdown pass; it was a low throw and he made the catch. He’s a big strong guy.”

On Georgia Tech’s pass defense
“Well I think we got pressure. Sometimes we blitzed. Then when they started max protecting we were able to drop in coverage. Other than their scoring drive we did a pretty good job all day challenging their receivers. They got behind us some but they didn’t complete them. At least we didn’t give them easy throws and even though we didn’t get many sacks we got pretty good pressure when we did bring blitzes.”

On expectations of the defense
“That’s the way I expect them to play every week. I was proud that they bounced back. I know they weren’t happy about the last two performances themselves. It wasn’t perfect by any stretch. We turned guys loose a couple times. There are a lot of things we can fix. But we played hard and, like I told the guys after the game, we made enough plays.”

On Defense stopping Virginia following Justin Thomas’ interception
“Any time you turn the ball over in your end, it’s huge if you can get a stop. That was big. Our defense played a lot better in the red zone today than we have the last couple games.”

Corey Griffin’s start at free safety
“We felt like we needed to shake it up back there a bit. And let guys know that if you don’t play well, you don’t just get to play all the time. I thought when Jamal [Golden] got back out there that he played fairly well.”

On the significance of the playing conditions/wind
“It was a pretty big deal. It was blowing hard. When you were going against the wind you really didn’t want to throw the ball deep. What it really affected was the kicking game. In the first half when we were against the wind, we were right on the edge of field goal range but we went for it on 4th-and-10 or whatever it was. It was affecting the game. I thought we probably needed to get down to the 20 yard line [for a field goal].”

Two defensive linemen among Georgia Tech’s leading tacklers
“Hallelujah. It’s time. It’s great.”


Opening remarks
“We didn’t play a good enough football game to keep us in this thing.  A couple of things I talked about early on with this Georgia Tech team that is tops in the country in terms of time of possession, is when you get your possessions you’ve got to make sure your opportunities to score count as well.  They got up on us early, and they made big plays on us. You can’t come from behind and surpass a team that has such a prolific ground attack, and at the same time you’re dropping passes or having penalties and being non-productive. with the ball yourself.

“They’re (Georgia Tech) a very good football team. They have their formula for success. We have to do better. It doesn’t get any easier for us to get ready to go down to Tallahassee and play Florida State. We have to leave from this place knowing that when you get down in the red zone, you have to score touchdowns, and minimize mistakes defensively as far as assignments.  This was an assignment-oriented football game, and there were more than a couple where we didn’t do our jobs.”

On going away form the running game after falling behind
“A little bit it had something to do with it, but again, you want to try and move the ball. They average a lot of time of possession, and in the third quarter they started with a seven-minute drive. When you have your possessions, you have to make sure that you have opportunities to move and get yourself in scoring position. We just didn’t do that today.”

On running the ball 16 times against Tech defense that ranks 93rd nationally in rush defense
“Like I just said, when you get down 14-0 early like that, you’ve got to find plays to move the ball and be productive. We weren’t productive early enough, often enough, and end up toward the latter part of the second quarter trying to move the ball. We didn’t do a good enough job.”

On significance of dropped pass in the end zone and kicking FG
“That’s the whole part of this red-zone opportunities to score.  It would’ve been 17-21 at that point if we make the catch. It’s frustrating. The guy feels bad about it, but you have to have those plays if you’re going to keep yourself in the football game.”

On end zone interception on fourth down  with 18-point deficit
“As I said, their time of possession was grinding up the clock pretty good. We felt that we’re going to take our chances to score right now, because they were doing a good job of moving the ball, and we weren’t stopping them like we needed to.”

Was Georgia Tech picking on CB Maurice Canady
“I don’t know if they were picking on Maurice. No. 88 (Darren Waller) is a tall receiver, 6-5, 6-6 plus, and they were utlilizing the matchup where they thought he could go up and get the ball. It worked out for them. Maurice is our best corner. They got the best of him today.”

On not challenging fourth down spot on Tech’s first possession of second half
“From where I was standing, I thought it was short. But again, the official said he marked forward progress. It was hard to tell.”

On lack of offense in second half
“The lack of execution, No. 1, the lack of performance that doesn’t lead to any production, and that’s a critical part if you’re going to move on and move forward in the second, third and fourth quarters. We’ve got to do a better job of that.”


Synjyn Days, BB, Sr., #10

Virginia came in as a real good defense, what were you guys doing to open up that middle?
“We were just really doing what Coach Johnson tells us to do and covering our assignments.  There wasn’t anything magical that happened out there.  Our offensive line did a great job blocking.  The A-Backs did a great job blocking the perimeter.  Justin made the right reads and we were successful with it.”

On his run to covert on 4th and 1 near the goal line
“Honestly, I wasn’t even sure if I got it.  Luckily the offensive line got a pretty good push.  I think Justin actually helped push me over the line after he gave it to me.  Big kudos to Justin for pushing a bigger guy like me to get the couple of yards I needed.  Actually, it was probably like an extra inch I needed.  Coach Johnson asked me before, “Do you think you can get it.”  I said, ‘Yes sir.  It’s like breathing; it’s easy.’  That’s the kind of approach everybody tries to take on the team.  If Coach asks us to do something, everybody on the team feels like they can do it.  And pretty much everybody on the team backs that up.”

On getting more snaps and his comfort level at B-Back
“The only way you are going to get better at B-Back is if you keep getting more reps.  In practice, the scout team can only give you such a good look.  But going against it live, like we did today, I was just staring to feel better after every carry.  I think that is the case with pretty much any running back.  The more carries you get, the more you are going to feel comfortable having the ball in your hands and making the right reads.”


On his interception
“It was man to man coverage.  Our focus this week was making sure to challenge receivers.  Coach Roof really put an emphasis on that in practice.  I feel like we came out and did a better job with that today.  Right there on the goal line, I was just trying to make a play, and it went our way.”

On the defensive coverage against Virginia
“We didn’t really do anything different.  We just ran our base stuff.  We just had to play more aggressive on the receivers than we had been playing.  That is what the main focus at practice was this week, getting off the field on third down. I felt like we did a good job with that today.”

On the team’s overall defensive performance
“It’s not where we want to be.  But it’s the best we’ve done all season.  We did a good job stopping the run, and that’s really what helped the passing attack.  We got a lot of pressure on the quarterback when they put the ball in the air.  That turned into two picks, the one that I had and the one Adam Gotsis had.  I felt like we did a good job with that this week.”


On limiting Virginia’s offensive attack
“The past two weeks we’ve gone up against big, physical offensive lines.  Both of them were a lot bigger than we are on the defensive line.  We just had a mindset that we need to go out there and shut down the run.  We trust our secondary to make plays when they need to.  We have to do our job up front.  And we really had not done that the last two weeks.  But we came out this week and that was the mentality that we had.”

On his interception:
“I had one last year against Clemson.  I don’t know what really happened on this one.  My guy cut blocked me, so I played the cut block and saw that it was a pass play.  I just tried to get back up.  I heard the ball get tipped and got my eyes up.  I was just in the right spot at the right time.  It’s a pretty good feeling, getting swarmed by the guys after a big defensive play.”

On holding Kevin Parks to under 30 yards of total offense:
“You know you are going to give up yards.  Every now and then they might bust a run.  We might make a mistake, and they might just have the right play call at the right time.  But even against Pittsburgh, we held them to five yards rushing.  We know what we are capable of.  Up until now, we really haven’t played our best defensive ball.  I felt like today we played with energy.  We always try to go out there with that edge on our shoulder, and we know that the game is on us.  That’s the mentality we have at D-Line.  If we let them run the ball, they win the game.  We had a ‘win at all costs mentality’ down in the trenches and that really prevailed for us today.”


Only giving up only 22 total rushing yards
“It shows that hard work does pay off.  If you compare this game to some of our other games, the effort here was much better.  The will to play was much better.  As a whole, we played as one, and there was more unity.  We played with more trust in each other.  It makes us really proud that we can do something like that.”

Coming into your freshman year, did you feel like you could be where you are right now?
“Coming in to my freshman year, I was mostly thinking about getting to classes and trying to adjust to school.  But the opportunity came, and I just stepped up.  The coaches and other guys really worked with me.  As the days went by, I kind of saw myself maturing.  Then I kind of envisioned myself being in this position where I am now.  It’s really a blessing and a good thing to be here.  I have the support of the whole team: the fans, my parents, my family back home, and my hometown.  So it’s really a blessing to actually be here.”


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