Media Day: Mike Jones

Mike Jones talked about the gameplan for this year, his role as a senior, and motivating the younger linemen and more at Media Day. Read what he had to say in this premium transcript.

Q: (A question on the younger linemen)

Mike Jones: As senior leaders, me, Mike, and Marshal also have to help develop and get the younger guys going.

Q: Chemistry is always important with the young guys coming in.

Jones: No doubt. Obviously last year, once we got the right line-up going, things worked well. I think it'll be no different this year, we have to find the right mix of people, get that chemistry going.

Q: With Drew back and Albert Young, with that kind of talent, it kind of helps?

Jones: Yeah, and you add to that Tom Busch, I think we have a great backfield.

Q: How do you look at this year, senior year, obviously you want to go out with a blaze of glory?

Jones: Not just go out with a blaze of glory, but to do that, you have to earn it. We have to do that here in the hot days of August. As a senior leader, I have to get the most out of the guys around me in order to be successful.

Q: Depth-wise, how do you guys feel OL wise?

Jones: Pretty good. We've got some young talent. A lot of guys who red shirted last year from the big recruiting class, this is the first year they'll be able to play. They've been making some strides in the off-season, they've been doing good things. Depth-wise I think we'll be alright.

Q: You come in with a lot of guys who know what they're doing. How would you rate the knowledge of this team going in, this OL going in?

Jones: I would say our knowledge is pretty good, we have 3 returning starters that are seniors in Me, Mike, and Marshal, Dace played a little bit last year. Raf, Rafael Eubanks is still getting his feet we at center. He's real smart, he knows more than what I'm doing out there. I think our group is experienced and very knowledgeable.

Q: Rafael may be the big question mark, what can you tell people about him?

Jones: You could say that. I can tell you he's from Minnesota, I guess. He's a good player, he's done a lot of good things for us. He did some good things in the spring. He's earned that starting spot for now. He's got to do a lot in camp to keep that and keep working. We know he's going to keep working, keep working hard. He's going to do a great job for us no matter what he's doing for us.

Q: Four years ago you got thrown into the mix at the Horseshoe at Ohio State. That was obviously an eye-opening experience. How do you think your experience could help Rafael Eubanks helping this season as a red shirt freshmen?

Jones: Obviously Rafael won't be in as tough a situation, clearly. Hopefully I'll be able to help him, kind of like Robert did to me, some of the other seniors on that line, did for me. He knows all the who to block, he knows all the schemes. That's what I didn't know back then. All he needs to know how to do is just how to play hard, play physical, and just how to play every play. I've got to keep him going, I've got to keep him on top of things.

Q: What do you think Dace has shown to this point?

Jones: Dace obviously is a strong left tackle. I like him like the other guys in this group. He's done a lot in the off-season, he's earned a spot for now. He knows he has to continue to improve. Right now, none of us are in the game right now, none of us are ready right now. Dace as well as the rest of us have to keep improving every day out here in practice and earn the right to start for Iowa.

Q: The line's pretty experienced, the backfield's experience, the guys are really going to roll up yards on the ground. Are you guys having that feeling?

Jones: Obviously I hope it's not a rushing attack like we had my sophomore year, to say the least. Obviously there's bigger expectations from the outside, we've got a great backfield, Drew, Albert, and Tom back there. Our offensive line, the whole offense, we have to step it up. We have to be tough and really just finish plays and work hard.

Q: As a line, wouldn't that be what you prefer, 12-play, all run drive?

Jones: Obviously, that'd be what you'd prefer. Then you do a play action to score a touchdown off of that. We want to run the ball, we want to stay physical, we want to set the tone and tempo for the game by running the ball.


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