UGA-Alabama: They Said It

ATHENS - Georgia's players chime in on playing Alabama this week.

Senior WR Malcolm Mitchell

On preparing for Alabama...

"We're staying focused, making sure we're prepared for Saturday the same way we did the other couple of weeks. Just come in the building prepared for practice, focus on the schemes that the coaches are setting up and executing."

On staying consistent in preparation for playing on the national stage...

"I don't think we should (change anything). I think we should handle it like we handle the majority of the games."

On building chemistry with junior QB Greyson Lambert...

"I definitely think (we are). I definitely think we've established that trust, not only with me and Greyson, but all the quarterbacks and the receivers."

Senior ILB Jake Ganus

On growing up in Alabama...

"I think it was a unique situation. You usually have to pick. In ninth grade, the first thing they asked me was `Are you Alabama or Auburn?' It's serious over there, that rivalry. It goes deep. I'm glad that I was a UAB Blazer and now I'm a Georgia Dog."

On whether he thought he'd play Alabama...

"When I got to UAB, no. I knew that was never going to happen. When I signed with Georgia and looked at the schedule and saw that they had Alabama and Auburn on there, I was like `that's awesome for me. I get to play both of my home state schools.' So that's cool."

On the play of the defense leading up to Alabama...

"I think we've done good. We've got a lot of things to improve on. Overall, it's going to come down to us having a great week of practice and a great week of preparation. In the end it's going to come down to who's the best on Saturday. I'm excited, I'm looking forward to it, and it's going to be a good challenge."

On the Crimson Tide's running game...

"I'm excited. Any time you have a team like that it's going to come down to who's going to be physical and what not. They've got some great running backs, great offensive line, just great everybody. Like I said it's going to come down to having a great week of practice and whoever plays the best on Saturday."

Sophomore TB Nick Chubb

On facing Alabama's defense...

"They're very good up front. The best seven in America. They haven't allowed anyone to rush for 100 yards on them this year. We've had over 200 yards in the past couple games and we're doing a great job of running the ball and throwing the ball. I think it'll be a great challenge for us."

On whether there's a different feeling on campus in anticipation of the game...

"Not so far for me. I really haven't seen any difference between this week and the past couple weeks but I'm sure later in the week it'll start to change."

On Alabama running backs Kenyan Drake and Derrick Henry...

"I know Derrick is a very powerful back. Kenyan is kind of our Sony Michel - very smooth runner, speedy, can move well. Those guys are very good. I think they complement each other well. I know Derrick is hard to tackle. You have to get to him before he gets going." 

On the tempo of the offense helping the running backs...

"We definitely speed it up. I know in practice they're moving very fast. We had like four plays down to a couple seconds. Coach (Mark) Richt keeps up with it. We're moving."

Senior DT Chris Mayes

On Alabama running back Derrick Henry...

"He's a big back, bigger than the usual back that you play, but still at the same time, I feel like if you hit him before the play gets started we have a great chance of stopping him. (Backs like that) bring a more physical aspect so you have to hit them more low than up top to sort of bring them down. So you stop his leg drop and you get them there." 

On this year's defense compared to last year's...

"I definitely think we're gelling as a unit, but we have more younger guys that need to get a better grasp of the game. They're coming along for us and playing well. I definitely think we have more energy and more fight. As a whole unit, I think we're pretty good overall. This year I think we're more physical and meaner overall."

On the defensive mentality...

"It stems from all the coaches. They all want us to be tougher as a unit, mental toughness, so that's how we approach each and every event." 


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