Bowden Press Conference Quotes

"I think that the most encouraging thing is that defense is the name of the game at any level of football. To get to the championship level, you have to be really good on defense. I was real pleased with the performance Saturday and it looks like we're headed in that direction," said Bowden.

On the play of his defense against Georgia:
"I thought the defense played real well. I don't think we gave up any big plays. We played very aggressively and intense the whole game. There was really good effort from sideline to sideline. I thought that was pretty indicative. As you watched the course of the game, as far as the number of people we had around the football, was good. Last year I think Georgia averaged 430 yards per game and had something like eight starters back on offense, and John and the defense held them to 203. You look and see 31 points, but seven of them were on defense, seven were on a 15-yard drive. They had the ball on the short end of the field a whole bunch."

On differences between John Lovett and Reggie Herring:
"Reggie's philosophy and John's are probably reversed. John would probably be zone first and blitz second, whereas Reggie would probably blitz first. If you look at Saturday's game, that was probably what happened. If you can have success with the people up front versus the run, you can have success. It helps if you can play a lot of zone on passing situations."

On the cornerback situation due to injury to Toure Francis:
"You will have to check with John (Lovett) to see what we are going to do. Justin Miller has made good progress. His role will increase from week to week and Toure's injury will just speed up the process. Kevin Johnson played well at Georgia." Note: Later in the day Lovett said Johnson would start.

On the punting situation for Clemson:
"Until I get a more consistent performance from our punter (Wynn Kopp), we're going to make it more competitive in practice. If the second-team guy (Cole Chason) were to show some consistency and get the confidence of this staff, then we would be more likely to try him in the game this week."

On the game-tying field goal attempt against Georgia last week:
"It was a little bit of a high snap, but Aaron Hunt still should have made the kick. I thought Geoff Rigsby, for his first game snapping for us to come on national TV, did a really good job. If he keeps performing like he did, then we are going to have to find a scholarship later."

On the possibility of emotional letdown against Louisiana Tech:
"That is the biggest thing about this sport. You better be at an emotional peak every Saturday regardless of the competition. I was talking with the team yesterday, and made them aware that East Carolina lost to Duke, Kentucky upset Louisville. The point being you better be ready from week to week, especially with a team like this. If they get behind, their offense is tailor-made to come from behind. But yes, that is one of the hardest things about coaching."

On his overall feeling after the loss to Georgia:
"I think that the most encouraging thing is that defense is the name of the game at any level of football. To get to the championship level, you have to be really good on defense. I was real pleased with the performance Saturday and it looks like we're headed in that direction. Now the biggest question mark is to not show flashes of good play, but be consistent. I see a lot of potential on offense. Willie Simmons' first career start was typical. He did some good things and he did some bad things. There are some things that will have to be eliminated though. He has not shown me anything in three years that makes me believe he won't be able to correct those things."

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