Ingle, Tigers Preparing For Hostile Environment

The Tigers' center talks about getting prepared to play a big game on the road this weekend.

Auburn, Ala.--Jeremy Ingle remembers the joy of beating the seventh-ranked Tennessee Volunteers in Jordan-Hare Stadium 28-21 last season. He knows what it took to pound out that first big win of the 2003 season and get the Tigers playing with some zeal.

"I remember us coming out with a lot of fire," Ingle says about last year's game. "That was probably the most fired up I have seen our team since I have been here. I don't know what it was about it we just came out with a chip on our shoulder. The key to that game was jumping on them. We jumped on them so quick they didn't know what hit them and they had a hard time catching back up and we were able to hold them off until the end."

However, despite the great memories from that big win last season, Ingle also says he knows that this year's game against the 10th-ranked Vols that will be played Saturday night in Knoxville will be nothing like last season's contest. "I have been there when there were probably about 50 people in there," Ingle says of Neyland Stadium. "I was there for football camp and I am sure it is not as crazy then as when there are 110,000, but it is going to be nuts going up there.

"We are just going to have to stay focused and go in and do our jobs and have check audibles on the line," The senior center adds. "We are not going to be able to check at the line like we would at home or anything like that. We are going to have to have set calls with our backs and receivers. But, hopefully we'll be able to go in there and handle the pressure."

Ingle says that despite having to make the offensive line reads and checks with the huge amount of crowd noise, his job will not be as tough as some of his fellow linemen's will be. "I don't think it is as bad as when you are a tackle, when you are out there on an island," he explains. "We were at The Swamp (Florida Field) a couple of years ago and Marcus McNeill and Troy Reddick were having problems hearing the snap count because you are so much farther out. The quarterback is right over me so I should be able to hear him, but I am sure those guys are probably going to have to key the ball a little bit more."

Jeremy Ingle is lined up and ready for a snap against Louisiana-Monroe.

Along with the daunting task of dealing with a hostile environment for the first time this season, Ingle notes that the Tigers will also have to battle very hard with a talented Tennessee squad for the win. "They are a good team," the senior says. "Tennessee has always got a good defensive line. They always have and always will have one. The linebackers are some of the strongest in the nation from what I have been hearing. They are just a good all-around team. They have great talent just like us and we are just going to go in there and we are going to have to get after them and hit them in the mouth to have a chance to win."

Another possible disadvantage that the Tigers could face heading into Knoxville is that unlike in the LSU game two weeks ago, the Volunteers will be looking for revenge against Auburn after last season's upset defeat. And Ingle notes that the Tigers have to build their own inspiration to battle the revenge factor.

"We have just got to go in there knowing that this is a must win situation for us," Ingle explains. "You can't take it as anything but that. We can't take it as we can lose this game and still go to the SEC championship. You have got to go in there thinking this is a must win, if we don't win this then we can't control our own destiny."

The 6-2, 281-pound center adds that despite noticing some of the national media praise that is starting to be given to Tigers, he and his teammates know that it is nothing more than idle chatter. "It is nice to have people talk about you like that, but to tell you the truth it means absolutely nothing," Ingle says. "We have won four games and we have got to play seven more. We have got teams like Tennessee, Arkansas and Georgia. I mean we could go undefeated and we could end up losing two or three games, you don't know," he continues.

All you can do, all you can control is your next game and your next play. And that is what we can do, just take them one at a time. Tennessee is our next game and that is our main focus so we are going to be ready to go."

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