"It feels good to be in victory lane again. I thought our kids came out and played really well early. Set a good tempo then lost focus, jumped offsides, dropped the ball. Got out of rhythm, just didn't convert as well -- just a shame. I would have liked to have stayed hot and kept going, but I thought the defense played very well. We got the running game going. I was very proud of the running game. It's like a tale of two halves: threw for 250 in the first half and ran for 250 in the second half. Had some young guys making some plays. Still made some mistakes but we are getting better. Special teams were solid. We're a body of work."
On Jermaine Thomas giving them a spark:
"That was why he was a captain, and I've felt that for the last week or two. I've seen him and his attitude and his body language and his read, and he's starting to feel it. And he's fast. He's starting to look like the old guy, and it wouldn't be bad to have him fresh down the stretch."
On starting the year as to where they are now:
"It's great. You've got to continue to have balance, and we're getting better in the running game and with what we're doing. We've got a long way to go. We are nowhere close where we need to be, but it does feel good to put two good running performances behind you and also be solid in the passing game. We're getting there."
On if it felt like a blowout on the sideline:
"No, it didn't. It was a very tight game. I'm glad the way we responded. It makes me feel better as a coach because it wasn't a blowout in the game. We had to run the ball when it mattered, when it was a two-score game. And Danny O'Brien is in the game, and when he's in the game and the ball is in his hands, I'm going to tell you, anything can happen. I was more proud the way we did it than if it was a blowout."
On the play of his defensive line:
"I thought the defensive line was very dominant in the game. They put constant pressure on the quarterback, and they ended up with six sacks. That was very good. They still deflected some balls, caused some problems, got an intentional-grounding call. I say that if you have good guys up front, it changes the ballgame."
John Crist is the editor-in-chief of NoleDigest.com, a Heisman Trophy voter and a member of the Football Writers Association of America.
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