LSU 26:21: Quoting Tuberville

Auburn's head football coach comments on his team's first loss of the season.

Auburn, Ala.--Comments from Auburn's head coach following the 26-21 SEC football loss to LSU on Saturday night are featured:

"It was a heck of a football game as it always is. It is always decided by a few points and there was no difference tonight. They made a few more plays than we did. Their receivers outran us on some crossing routes that got us into trouble a little bit. We just didn't close on them quick enough in the second half. The trick play got us on the one touchdown.

"I was proud of our offense fighting back and getting the lead for us and then our punting let us down. We didn't kick a very good punt. In a game like this, it is about everybody and everybody doing their share. Some areas didn't do as well as we hoped to. In the first half on defense we played awesome. In the second half, they got something going in the passing game. They stayed with it and it opened up their running game and kept us off balance a little bit. They had a good game plan. They have an excellent football team.

"We took a major step forward. We played much better than we did last week. I was proud of the offense. At times, we started executing and we didn't have the crazy penalties that we had last week or the turnovers. We are not satisfied obviously with losing the game. That's hard fought. We had the lead, lost it, had the lead again, lost it and we have a disappointed bunch of guys in that locker room because we thought with the way we played at times, we should have won. Again, when you play good football teams you have to play every play. They made a few more plays than we did."

(On Punter Clinton Durst not playing)

"Durst got the flu on Tuesday and his fever didn't break until this morning. We were fortunate he was able to come out and warm up just in case we needed him. Obviously, you can't average 37 yards a punt against these guys. You look at their side, they averaged 48 yards a punt. Special teams was a major factor and field position, especially on a couple of crucial drives."

(On Gabe McKenzie's Interception Return for a Touchdown)

"He made a big play. Our defense has been making big plays all year. It's good to see him have some success. We fought hard on defense. I thought we got tired a little bit. When they started going what we call trips with three receivers on one side and one receiver to the other they just outran us on some speed routes and the quarterback made the throw. In a couple of games, even the games that they had won, they hadn't thrown those passes very well. He got the hot hand there in the third quarter and kept us off balance and that was pretty much a part of it."

On Auburn's Second to Last Possession

"We weren' t trying to run the air out of the ball. It was just doing what they were giving us and of course, the thing that they were giving us at the time was forcing us to try to run the ball to see if they could make the tackles.

"I thought Tony (Franklin) called a good game. I thought it was a game where we found out a lot about ourselves. We made some big plays, made some big throws and had some runs. I would hope we would have 125 yards rushing this game and we had 70, but some of that is taken away with a couple of sacks. For us to win in this offense or any offense, you have to get the ball down the field on the ground some, but we won't play many defenses like that. That was about as strong as we will see. They have speed. They cover a lot of ground and we still executed. We still had a few yards and a few big plays, some consistent drives and a little bit better than we have had in the past."

On LSU' s game winning drive did you consider taking some time outs when LSU was in field goal range?

"Yes, but the way it worked out, we were going to need those if we didn' t get the sack. We had the ball at the 50 yard line with 3 time outs left. I was watching the clock, but I didn't want to waste them."

Did you think about playing Kodi Burns?

"Chris (Todd) was doing pretty good throwing the ball. They were forcing us to throw the ball. They had eight men on the line of scrimmage and they were going to see if we could get the ball down the field and we did. Heck, we threw the ball for 250 yards and made some plays and made some good throws. In a game like that, it is just hard. We felt like at times we would need Kodi to run the football, but we felt like we kept them off balance pretty good with Chris. It is just hard to imagine going into the game and you get the game going and we have a 14-3 lead, that you are moving the football and don' t just change it to change it."

On Brad Lester

"Brad Lester is fine. He is just a little sore. Dr. (James) Andrews evaluated him. He could have come back into the game. It was a twisted ankle-knee."

On not kicking a 50 yard and 48 yard field goal in the third quarter

"It was into the wind. We charted it during warmup and it was less than 50 percent from that distance. Of course, we had one decent drive (to open the second half) where we got the ball down to somewhere around the 20 yard line and we took a couple loss downs, had a run loss for about six yards and had a sack that knocked us out of field goal range. Those are things that we have to correct. That is game management and we didn' t do a very good job there to get at least 3 points back."

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