Quotes from today's football press conference

Quotes from today's football press conference

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RICK STOCKSTILL ON NEW DUTIES OF COACHING STAFF: Coach (Brent) Brock and Coach (Justin) Watts both work with the receivers, so I moved Brock to help out with the running backs. I will also help out with the running backs and the receivers. We have all had to take a bigger role in the offense because we are a coach short.

Buster Faulkner, the quarterback coach, will call the plays. The reason we did that was so our players, especially the quarterbacks, were comfortable, and I thought that was the smart thing to do, to put him in there as the primary play caller. He deals with the quarterbacks on a daily basis, in the meeting room and on the field. We practiced both Saturday and Monday with this setup, and we’ve had two really good practices. Our players are focused. I say it all the time, it’s about the players, and it’s not about the coaches. We haven’t had any hiccups and I don’t expect anything to be an issue or problem with how we have our coaching responsibilities now. Our players have had a great attitude, and they are working hard.

STOCKSTILL ON FAU: We are excited to go down there because it seems like forever since we’ve played a game. FAU has a good defense, but have struggled on offense lately. They didn’t have their quarterback last week, but they will have him back this week. That will help their offense. But it’s more about us than it is Florida Atlantic. We have been really close this year in every game we’ve played but one. But like I have said before, we’ve made enough plays to win each game, but we’ve made mistakes in each game that has cost us the ball-game. That’s what we have to get corrected, and I said yesterday that I hope we play our best game.

STOCKSTILL ON WHAT TEAM WORKED ON IN OFF-WEEK: I think our team thinks, and has always thought, that we are getting better. I’ve never gone into a game this year concerned about how we are going to play because we had a bad week of practice. Our guys have a wonderful attitude. They practice hard and with great intensity. We practiced on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday during the open week, then recruited on Thursday and Friday. We practiced Saturday. We spent most of our time working on trying to get us better fundamentally, and trying to correct some mistakes. And at the same time, we were trying to work in a little FAU game plan. We also used last week as an opportunity to scrimmage and work some of the guys who are being red-shirted or aren’t playing a lot. We were able to get them 20-30 minutes of scrimmaging at the end of practice.

STOCKSTILL ON PROGRESS OF WILLIAM PRATCHER: William continues to improve and to me that is just natural. The more reps you get, the better you are going to play. He has a great attitude, he works hard, he tries to get better in practice, and that has carried over to the games. Kyle Griswould got a couple of plays last game, and he has improved. Those two guys have got to be our horses this week.

STOCKSTILL ON PLAYING FAU: All of our games against FAU have been close and physical games. We have to come out this weekend with a great attitude, and play hard, and cut down on our mistakes.


ON OFF WEEK: It’s strange to have two off weeks in the first six games or so. I think we’ve made some good progress. We’ve had some good practices. I think we’re taking every opportunity to get better.

ON IMPORTANCE OF THIS WEEK: I don’t think we’re that far off from where we want to be. It’s not like we need to change that much. A couple different plays in each of those games and we’re sitting here at 4-1. I think it’s just a matter of believing in each other and putting it all together for 60 minutes.

ON LEADERSHIP: I don’t think we’ve had a problem with leadership. We knew at the beginning of the year we were going to have young guys playing. We have an experienced offensive line. And we have some guys at the receiver position that might not be as vocal but you can still count on them doing the right things.

ON INCREASED NUMBERS FROM MCDONALD AND BEYAH: I think our coaches put us in great positions. I feel those guys come out and play hard. They’re very consistent. They’ve made some great catches. I think Malcolm has taken advantage of some good situations. And you throw Sancho a 5-yard hitch route in the first overtime against Western and he takes it for a touchdown. So they’ve both played really well.

ON THE SUN BELT: Every game you go into in the Sun Belt, we’re expecting a dog-fight no matter what the records are. Every time I’ve seen Florida Atlantic on film they’ve been good. I feel like they out-played Auburn. They’ve had a tough schedule with Michigan State, Florida, and Auburn. But I think if we get caught looking at somebody’s schedule they’re going to surprise us.


ON QB PRESSURE: We have to continue to watch film. Coach always says don’t confuse effort with results. So I feel like the smarter I play and the more I watch film the better I’m going to get at forcing sacks and fumbles.

ON TEAM MOVING FORWARD: I feel like we need to stay close as a team. Right now we have our backs against the wall and this is when we find out who’s going to step up and see what kind of team we’re going to be.

ON DIFFERENT BLOCKING SCHEMES HE’S SEEING: I believe there’s a lot more cutting this year. Memphis did a lot of cutting as well as Western. I believe our opponents are taking notice of how much better we’re getting as a whole defensive line. And that’s a credit to how well we’re coached.

ON WHAT’S MISSING FROM DEFENSE: It’s all mental. I believe the little mistakes are what the offense is taking advantage of. We just have to limit those mistakes so they don’t become 30 or 40-yard plays. In the past couple games there have only been one or two big plays that have changed the game. If we can limit those plays we can come up with some wins.

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