Pouncey: Turnovers Killed Us

Mike Pouncey lumbered to the podium after Saturday's 31-7 loss to Florida State nursing a chest injury. He was hit in the chest and went to the locker room during the fourth quarter, but that didn't seem to be all that was slowing him down. He almost seemed to be carrying the entire weight of a five-loss season with him.

"It sucks," Michael Pouncey said. "Through all the bullcrap, the team kept fighting. We could've easily gave up. Turnovers killed us in this game. When you have this many turnovers, you can't win a game, especially on the road."

Florida fumbled the ball three times and threw one interception. There was also a fake punt in the second quarter that didn't work, giving Florida State the ball on its half of the field.

The interception was the most costly. John Brantley threw it with the Gators at Florida State's 20-yard line and 55 seconds remaining in the first half. A touchdown would have cut the lead to 10 points before the half, but the interception kept all of the momentum in the Florida State locker room at halftime.

"Turnovers just killed us," Pouncey said. "Everyone we had hurt a lot, but that one pretty much put the dagger in us."

The offense seemed to have more success with Jordan Reed at quarterback instead of Brantley, but there wasn't much success either way. The Gators ran for 212 yards, but could only throw for 64 yards against Florida State's sub-par secondary. Despite the issues at quarterback, Pouncey says the team is capable of rallying behind both quarterbacks.

"We're happy with either quarterback in there," Pouncey said.

The team has said after every loss that the goal remains to send the seniors out on a positive note. Pouncey, a senior, sees it going the other way. He wants to help in the progress the young players need to make to bring the Florida program back to the top.

"We're going to help these young guys get on track for their season next year," Pouncey said. "Obviously, we've been here when there were good times. Through these bad times, we've got to teach these young guys how to improve as players."

One thing that made the 2008 and 2009 teams great was their ability to practice. With young players being depended in important positions next season, Pouncey sees a chance to change their habits off the field that could impact the future.

"There's a lot," Pouncey said. "These guys have to learn how to prepare and practice. We've got to get the right players playing the right positions and build this program back to a winning program."

Head coach Urban Meyer opened his press game press conference by saying the Florida staff will get things turned around, and Pouncey doesn't have any doubt it will happen.

"He will," Pouncey said of Meyer's chances to turn the program around. "He's a great coach. He's going to get the right players in and turn this one around fast."
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