Psychologically, where is this team after Saturday's loss to Georgia Tech?
Bowden: Very disappointed about the loss. When you get one that you've thought you've won right up until the last second, it's tough. They're all tough, and the hurt is pretty much the same, but the one characteristic you take away from Saturday is that this team will fight you for sixty minutes. They've done that now for two straight weeks and I think we'll carry that over to the next game.
How much time have you spent looking back over that last quarter from Saturday?
Bowden: Very little.
Was taking a safety ever a consideration on the final series?
Bowden: After thinking about it, no. We practice that. We practice that on Thursdays, taking a safety. Further to end zone, we probably would have done that, but it was an awful long way to run.
Can you address how you handle fans calling players after games and leaving hurtful messages?
Bowden: To me, those would not be fans. If you are referring to Geoff Rigsby, those were all drunks. The drunks call, just like when they call myself, you aren't very appreciative of that. I don't drink.
You said a few weeks ago that this team couldn't rely on last year. Do you now try to get them to tap into last year's streak at the end of the season considering what happened on Saturday?
Bowden: The thing you do is try to accentuate the positive. But, if you want your team to carry over anything, it's the ability to fight. This team will do that. The things from a coaching perspective, where I get I evaluated: Center-quarterback exchange, game management, running game- well the running game is getting better, the offensive line- well we didn't give up any sacks Saturday. Hopefully, the boys at Texas A&M sees the film of the last two games and says, boy we better pack our lunch. Sure, we lost, and that's the most important thing, but you better have a plan for defeat.
If your personality is to spread the field, why didn't you do that on the final series against Georgia Tech?
Bowden: Most defensive coordinators in that particular position will either play the down and distance or the formation. We went with the percentages. Most of them will play the down and distance. Then you make your decision based on past experiences.
You are 9-1 here at Clemson after a loss of seven points or less, can you comment on that?
Bowden: I didn't know that until Tim (Bourret) told me that. You'd like to think you've got the ability to motivate a team after a loss. Again, I guess it's my record, but it's more staff and the players responding, things like that.
Do you think your players can be a little more resilient than fans and coaches?
Bowden: I don't think there's any doubt. I think they hurt, but they are more resilient.
Is this where this team draws on last year after the loss to Wake Forest?
Bowden: I believe that's in the back of their minds. It's a lot of the same cast of characters, and I think they will definitely draw from that. At this point in time, they won't quit. They've played two 60-minute games down to the wire; one of them was more than 60 minutes. That's kind of their M.O., their method of operation. They won't give up.
What do you think about the environment at Texas A&M?
Bowden: That's why a lot of the ACC teams like to come in here and play because the other ones. You aren't going to get this environment in Atlanta, you aren't going to get it at Duke, or N.C. State, or probably even Maryland. The size of the stadium, the size of the town, and our fans' loyality to the team. Texas A&M has the same spirit. I think our guys will feel very comfortable because their spirit and their fan base is very similar to ours. Their fans are very loyal and they have a rich history. I think that's going to be a helpful motivational factor. You look at a lot of the other schools and you don't get that kind of fan support. This is a taste of the big time. We get everybody's best juiced up effort and Texas A&M would be similar to that.
Is there any chance that the weather (Hurricane Ivan) could change your plans this week?
Bowden: There's people in our administration that have their eye on that. Andy Johntson, our administrative guy, he'll talk with Terry Don Phillips and make a decision, but we'll be looking into it and keeping track of the situation.
Is it kind of good that you are playing on the road this week?
Bowden: I think most teams enjoy going on the road occasionally, just a change of scenery. I know they'll enjoy the environment. You look at Dennis Franchione and look at his track record during his second year at a program. The players know about stuff like that. There's not as many distractions on an away trip a
What have you seen out of the Texas A&M defense on film?
Bowden: They are real big. They one play a lot of one coverage with one safety. They're inside guys are 305 and 318. They are really really big- their inside guys and their back ups. Their ends are in the 270-275 range. We are looking at a bigger team than what we've faced during practice and also what we've faced in Georgia Tech and Wake Forest. You'll see more man that you'll see zone. Georgia Tech liked to bring 5-man pressure in a zone; they'll do it with man.
The score of Texas A&M's first two games, is that real indicative of the type of team they have?
Bowden: If you watch them versus Utah, they were a little more tentative. Utah slows your reaction time just a bit. Wyoming was a bit more aggressive. We don't run the option as much as Utah, but we run it more than Wyoming does, so we fall somewhere in the middle.