Kines On Texas Tech

Alabama Defensive Coordinator has a justified reputation as an excellent football tactician when it comes to stopping high-powered offenses. He and the Alabama defense will be put to the test in the Cotton Bowl against Texas Tech on Monday.

Alabama Defensive Coordinator Joe Kines met with the media in Dallas to discuss Monday's Cotton Bowl challenge against Texas Tech.

Alabama vs Texas Tech is considered to be one of the year's most intriguing bowl games as it pits the effective Crimson Tide defense against the explosive Red Raiders offense.

Here are some of Kines' thoughts about the game:

On reasons for University of Texas' success on defense against Texas Tech:

"They have great athletes and they are well-coached. Gene Chizik is as fine a defensive coordinator as there is in the country. He did a great job against them that week and they have great kids. Coach (Mack) Brown and that whole staff, what a great year they've had. They did a nice job against them, but we are a different team.

"You look at what they (Texas) did against them, but we have looked at all 12 tapes. I wasn't on the road so I looked at nearly every snap they have had this year. The thing that you fight is there are a lot of great things out there, but we couldn't even call it. It isn't in our system. You just have to do what you do."

On emphasis on tackling in SEC and anything different done for Texas Tech's offense:

"Thankfully, we have done nothing different because that is how we start every practice. I learned a long time ago that every play ends with a tackle or one of those striped shirts throwing up both hands. Every defensive play ends with one of those two things. If you have too many of those striped shirts throwing up those hands, you aren't going to be there too long.

"We start every practice with tackling. If it rains practice out and lightning makes us go in, we are going to have tackled before we leave that field that day. We are going to start every day tackling. We do tackling circuits. We do a lot of different type of tackling. That is one thing that this group has done. I have watched a few of the bowl games (this year) and that is the first fundamental to go when you have a lot of time off, because that is really not a natural thing. People that think running up and slamming into somebody with your face and throwing them on the ground is a natural thing something is odd about that. You have to work on that everyday. If you don't you are going to go downhill."

On approach to dealing with Texas Tech's offense:

"It is hard to shut this offense down. If you go into the game thinking we are going to throw strikes every snap, we could drive ourselves crazy. We could drive our youngsters crazy. They understand what is in front of them. We have a tremendous challenge in covering their offense.

"Still we have to fundamentally sound in rushing the passer. We have to be fundamentally sound in coverage. You have to be fundamentally sound tackling the ball. If you do those three things, then how ever good you are that gives you the best chance to win. If you don't one of those three things, if you get no pressure on him, if you don't cover or you void zones or if you don't tackle well then those are the games you look up at he has 60 on the board. You are forced to be a fundamentally sound team.

"To me that is the reason this offense is so intriguing. This is a system. Most coaches can't stand it. They are going to add two more plays. If this one is good, than one more would be great. He is really done a nice job of not doing that. They are running the same plays and the same system. They are letting that quarterback put the ball where it is supposed to go. They have it in his hands and in his eyes and he is well-coached. He is a well-coached youngster that has been in a system a long time. That quarterback, being a fifth-year guy in a system that is about the best you can hope for. His courage and athletic ability is a bonus for them."

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