Nov. 2, 2013
Head Coach Steve Spurrier
It was a very good win for our team. To get 15 in a row at home, maybe the best in the country, well Michigan but I think they play Ohio State there this year. It was a good win. Obviously our offense sputtered, it wasn’t a really good day for our offense. I think we need to go back and get a little more physical in practice. It seemed like we were a little too soft and we didn’t do too much. Fortunately our defense was there and got some turnovers and we were able to capitalize and score some touchdowns and only have to kick a couple of field goals. Really good play by Elliott Fry, he made both of his [field goals]. Our punter, Tyler Hull, he caught them and got them out. I think we played with zero turnovers, that’s one thing our offense did well was take care of the ball. We couldn’t run it very well and we couldn’t throw it very well at times. We hit a few touchdown passes fortunately but third downs we were pretty sorry and overall we were very sorry. Mississippi State had a good plan and they got the best of our offense today but it is a team sport. Our special teams played well and our defense played very well and got all of those turnovers that sort of set up. We only had 54 plays and 300 yards and they stopped us. Give those guys credit, they were a little bit better than us in that area but still we won the game and sometimes you need to win that way. We’re a pretty good team and it was neat to see our defense rise up and do some very good playing here today.
On how big the turnovers were
I think we scored on all of them, usually touchdowns but we did have a couple field goals that we had to kick. They were very crucial. We did have one good drive in the third quarter about 85 yards when Mike [Davis] had his one long run. I think Mike went over 1,000 yards today with that long run. Pharaoh [Cooper] had a few runs in there. Turnovers were crucial and Mike Davis did have another excellent game. We gave President Pastides a game ball. He’s been here for all 15 of those wins at home and he’s one of the best presidents in the nation and we’re lucky to have him here. It was neat to have him in the locker room to give him a game ball.
On making one of 11 third downs
One of 11 and punted eight times but we played with no turnovers, that’s one thing we did do. We did hit some touchdowns passes. We were pretty poor in those area, we didn’t run it well and we didn’t do the third downs well but red zone scoring we were 4-for-4. I guess two field goals two touchdowns. We didn’t squander the opportunities, which is about the only really good thing you can say. Shaq Roland had an excellent game, I think those were the only two catches he had and we couldn’t get the ball to Bruce Ellington today. You wonder why one week you can throw him 10 and the next you can’t even throw it at him but that’s the way it was sort of happening today. They [Mississippi State] just had a good plan. They didn’t play a whole lot different than they have been but they had a good scheme, they out played us and out coached us as well.
On how Connor Shaw played having the illness earlier in the week
He played ok. He wasn’t as sharp as some of his games this year but he felt fine. We had some bad plays too, I kept thinking at home maybe we’d be able to audible. Give Mississippi State credit for disguising, as soon as he [Connor Shaw] picked his foot up they would change their defense against the play we had. We hit one little screen pass. Maybe it was a game they just had a lot of good calls on and maybe we didn’t because we looked pretty poor a lot today especially on third downs.
Lorenzo Ward â€¢ Defensive Coordinator
On Victor Hampton’s play
I thought Vic played well. Vic has played well the past couple games. We put him in some situations where he knows he is one-on-one with some help. I think his film study is better, and I think he knows what types of routes he is typically going to get in a game.
On Mississippi State’s turnovers
We didn’t have a lot of turnovers this season. I think as you get better on defense and guys understand what they are doing, we play faster and when you play faster you can be more physical.
On the slow starts
We addressed it the last couple weeks, so it’s been a focus for us. I don’t know if it’s because we have a lot of young players and they are over emotional, and [when] they settle down we’re better. We have to come out and settle down and not try to do too much too early.
Connor Shaw â€¢ QB â€¢ Senior
On the offensive line’s performance
I think our offensive line has played well throughout the season. I didn’t have my best game today. We were 1-for-11 on third down conversions. The only way you win with that is if the defense has five turnovers. But, I thought our offensive line played solid today.
On his four touchdown passes
It was good to have four touchdowns on the day. I think we were 4-for-4 in the red zone. I just tried to distribute the ball to our players, and they made plays for us today.
On playing at home
Our players love to play at home, there’s no place like it. Our fan base is the best in the country, and I think we’ve proven that with 15 wins at home.
Shaq Roland â€¢ WR â€¢ Sophomore
On his first of two touchdown catches
The first touchdown was a man coverage and it was an option route for me. I didn’t see anyone inside so I broke it off inside and made the catch. It was a great pass.
Jadeveon Clowney â€¢ DE â€¢ Junior
On seeing the defense grow throughout the season
We all depend on each other. Everybody’s got an assignment out there to do, regardless of who makes plays or not. I’m not going to make a lot of plays, they might not make a lot of plays, but everybody around the ball gets to the ball and we just stick together.
On what it means to win 15 straight at home
It’s big. We tied [the record], and in two weeks we are coming in here to break it. We’re looking forward to that, having the most wins in South Carolina history at home. We won’t let this streak end against Florida.
On the improvements of the redshirt freshmen
I told the guys that we have a good group of freshmen that came in and it’s going to take some time for them to come around – and they are finally starting to come around. They’ve been playing, but they are getting their awareness and starting to figure the game out. It’s slowing down for them, and they just making plays for the team.
Sharrod Golightly â€¢ Spur â€¢ Junior
On this being the best defensive game this season
I think altogether, it might have been. We had forced a lot of turnovers, played together and we flew around – we had fun.
On stepping up when the offense struggles
When we see the offense struggle, everybody struggles sometimes time. For the most part, we are just trying to look at it as a team aspect Â¬- if we just do our job, it will all come around.
Skai Moore â€¢ LB â€¢ Freshman
On the defense’s five turnovers
It means a lot to us, because in practice we’ve been preaching that we need to make a lot of turnovers and make a lot of plays. So for us to come out there today and do that – it was a big thing. I think it contributed to the win a lot.
On what he did to earn the starting position this week
I just lined up my assignments. I executed my assignments and lined up where I was supposed to be throughout the week. And I guess I impressed Coach [Kirk] Botkin enough to give me the start.
On the adjustments made on defense after the first touchdown by Mississippi State
After they scored we all just came to the sideline and guys like Vic [Hampton] and Brison [Williams], they were really talking to us and just motivating us to let us know that that can’t happen again. We went out there and made those adjustments. It was more so like mentally than anything else, but Bryson and Vic, they made us go back out there and take care of business.
Mike Davis â€¢ TB â€¢ Sophomore
On reaching 1000 yards
Going over a thousand yards, it means a lot. I’m proud of myself, and I am glad I was able to be the eighth person (to do that). It’s a great feeling.
On what he was more impressed by – his running or catch
I would say the catch. I probably twisted my body around like twice and came down on my shoulder hard, but I would say I’m more (impressed) with the catch.
On being aware of being able to reach the 1,000-yards mark during the game
I was aware of it at the Missouri game! I just wanted to come in and work hard. I knew sooner or later it would come to me.
Head Coach Dan Mullen
Obviously, it’s a very disappointing day when we get 11 more first downs than them. We had a lot better pass completion, more yards, and more plays. The difference was we turned the ball over five times, and your percentage of winning, after doing that on the road in the SEC is very low. Besides that, we did a lot of good things. We did a great job on third down against one of the best defenses in the league. Our defense came out and played very well, but we had a couple of critical breakdowns and were put in some tough situations. We did a lot of things to win, but give South Carolina credit. They didn’t make mistakes, and they made the plays; and we made mistakes and didn’t make enough plays.
On the turnover to start the second half
It was huge. It was a 17-10 game, we’ve got good field position and we feel good about ourselves. We have the opportunity to take the ball down and tie the game up. They made a mistake on the kick-off, but we came back and made another mistake and gave them the ball. Turnovers were the story of the game.
On South Carolina’s program and the atmosphere during today’s game
You look at what they’ve done and what Coach Spurrier has been able to do here. It’s an early kick-off and it’s a sold-out stadium, not an empty seat in the house all the way through the fourth quarter. Their fans are making noise and cheering their team on. They’ve established and built a program here, and it’s something that we’re trying to catch up to. It takes everyone to be involved to build a program, and they’ve got everybody involved. We need to have the same atmosphere as they do right here, week in and week out, for all four quarters and create a hostile environment. It forces other teams into making mistakes, and that’s how you win at home and become a contender in the SEC.
On team’s preparation for the game and how turnovers changed the game
I thought we had a great week of practice and had great preparation. It’s an early kick-off, and sometimes you’re worried as a coach if you’re going to have get your team up and going. We had a 7 a.m. wake-up time, but our guys were ready to go. You look at the game, and we did some really good things. I think if you flip the turnover ratio and they have five turnovers and we have zero, we could’ve won this game.
Dak Prescott â€¢ Quarterback â€¢ Sophomore
On identifying what went wrong today and how to fix it
Everybody doing their job. Everyone making the block, everybody doing the right route, being big on a catch, just the little things we have to fix and it starts with me. We are going to get that right.
On how momentum shifted from Mississippi State early in the game to South Carolina
We went down there and scored and that’s how the game should have went the whole game. We didn’t execute. The first drive should have been like the rest of the game.
On how he feels after taking numerous hits
The loss hurts more than all of it but I’m all right.
Benardrick McKinney â€¢ Linebacker â€¢ Sophomore
On offense turnovers putting the defense with their back against the walls
To be a great defense, no matter what situation you are in, you have to make big plays and stop them even if the offense turns it over and they are on the 1-yard line. Defense has got to make a big play to get the offense back on the field.
On Coach Mullen saying it was the coaches’ fault the sack being followed up by a long South Carolina play
I never blame anything on anybody. I feel like that the defense should have made the plays even if the coaches put us in a bad position.
Cedric Jiles â€¢ Cornerback â€¢ Redshirt Freshman
On if he is frustrated seeing players break through the coverage
It isn’t frustrating really. It’s more `let me get my stuff together and don’t get beat.’
On quick turnarounds due to the offense turnovers
You have got to be ready to play and stop the offense every down and make the changes. You’ve got to make a play and get the offense back on the field.