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Nov. 25, 2002

“It is disappointing to end the season without a bowl game. I’m not used to that. We didn’t deserve to go to a bowl. There were just so many things that kept us from it like 3rd down, and foolish penalties.”

“It just dawns on you today about all of the seniors that we lost. We had a lot of good football players. We had 16 on our two deep chart. Andrew Pinnock, Ryan Brewer, Cedric Williams, Dennis Quinn, Rashad Faison, Shane Hall, Langston Moore, Jermaine Lemon, and Jonathon Martin were all good players that we lost. I started to look at next year’s senior class and thought about letting them vote for captain when I meet with them on Monday. We may make it open to anyone on the football team.”

“If you look at it offensively, our offensive line played pretty well this year. I thought running back was the most improved position on our football team. We lost one fumble in our last nine games. I remember when we were sitting in here and talking about how we could improve on that, well I think we did that. I wished we could have corrected that before the fumbles. The backs ran well, and they blocked well. We had problems at wide receiver on a consistent basis. We had only one receiver who was a deep threat and he had a marvelous freshman year but he is still a freshman. Wide receiver still remains to be the biggest concern as we head into next year. At quarterback, any time when a quarterback has two major surgeries like Bennett Swygert you just have to wait and see. Dondrial Pinkins started the last two games and against Clemson he made two bad throws, one when he made a bad throw to Troy Williamson and the other was a bad decision. He played pretty well. Saturday he got hurt and we brought in our back up and two plays later we punted and they scored to take the lead. We drove back down the field and dropped a pass. That is pretty typical of our season. I felt like we didn’t pass the ball enough. We need to be 50-50. Our running game was great but we need to pass more.”

“Special teams, our punt and place kicking was outstanding. Kickoff coverage was a problem all year. Kickoff return was pretty good when Ryan Brewer returned them. We have to find a kickoff returner that is critical. Our punt return was non-existent because of their field position.”

“Defensively, the same thing haunted us all year; defensive penalties, opponents 3rd down conversions, and no pressure on the passer. We allowed 47% on third down that has to be a record.”

“Now it is where do you go after you lose those seniors? We know what has to be corrected but we didn’t get it corrected this year. About going to two consecutive bowls and the result of this season, it is like a stock market you take your bounces and you hope to get back up and if not you should remember this. Every year you should attend two wedding and two funerals. You attend a wedding to renew your vows, and you attend a funeral to realize how inconsequential some things that upset you truly are and how much little time you have on this earth.”