Big-Play Bulldogs Satisfied With 49-16 Win

WIDE RECEIVER CHAD BUMPHIS: Q: Do we call you receiver, quarterback or return man today? "Uhh, receiver! The coaches told us in practice this week we were going to have opportunity to make a lot of plays so we prepared and they got us ready to put us in good situations."

Q: Did you know you were going to line up at wildcat or whatever you call it?
"Coach Mullen told me, I think it was Monday, he texted me and asked me how I felt about taking snaps. And of course I was excited."

Q: How long have you been trying to talk him into that?
"Since probably the summer."

Q: Do you have any plays that you can throw?
"We haven't put any in yet. But I mean, we'll see."

Q: Did you feel this was a matchup you could do well in?
"Yeah. You always want to go into the game thinking you have a good chance to produce. I think the quarterbacks did a great job of putting the ball where it needed to be today and we just made plays."

Q: Your second touchdown, did you think Chris Relf was going to be able to thread the needle like that?
"It was a great pass. I honestly don't know how he got it through there, I don't even think I would have thrown it! But it was a great pass."

"Just any time you go out and make plays and come away with a win like this it gives you confidence. I think the coaches have confidence in us to give us the ball and I think we'll be able to produce."

Q: You almost broke a punt, is that just waiting to happen?
"Yeah, there was one if I would have got my hands on I think I was gone, but that sun was blinding and I couldn't find the ball."

Q: Was it good to see Leon Berry break a return?
"Yeah, I was happy for him, it's been a long time coming. He was probably one of the best in the country last year returning kicks and it's good for him to get one under the belt."

Q: Some of your big gains came after being hit?
"You have to give them credit, they were a pretty good team. A lot of it was going through repetitions in practice and breaking tackles. Coach tells us whatever you do in practice it will carry over in the game. I think just having a great week of practice prepared me for it."

Q: When the offense was struggling in the third quarter did you want to get under center?
"Nah, our quarterbacks did a great job. We want to get rid of mistakes like that but that's just something we have to overcome. We just have to execute on offense, we can't turn the ball over. But a win is a win and we're happy to get it.

Q: Do you expect to get more direct snaps?
"I hope so. I sure hope so, I like it!"

"When Coach Mullen was at Florida he came to Tupelo and watched one of the games I played quarterback. And he told me there was opportunity if I played for him I could be doing that. Then when he came here he told me that I could be doing it."

Q: Do you expect to keep this up and even throw some passes?
"Yeah, I'm going to stay on him about it! So either I'll do it or I'll, I mean…"

Q: You might want to stop right there!

Q: How long will it take to get focused on Houston?
"Tomorrow at practice. I mean we'll enjoy the win tonight and tomorrow get back to the drawing board and get ready for Houston."

Q: What did you see on your kickoff return?
"I mean, Coach was talking about it before that we needed good field position. Everybody did their job, executed, and you just had to trust it and hit it. And that's what I did."

Q: Did you notice Chris Hughes making the big block on the side?
"Yes sir, he made a good block and I was thanking him hard for that. Because he came and grabbed me in the end, almost tackled me! I told him yeah, I saw your block! But we did good."

Q: You'd gone three weeks without a catch, how much confidence do you get off a game like this?
"It's a big confidence booster. I mean, Coach always says we're going to throw the ball, that depends on how we caught the ball in practice. And all week we caught the ball well, he said we were going to come out throwing and that's what we did."

Q: How did both quarterbacks throw the ball today?
"Oh, the both did good. The one Chris (Relf) threw that I didn't score he said man, you should have got in the end zone, that would have been my third touchdown! We kind of laughed and joked about that. When Tyler (Russell) came in he executed."

"We came out a little slow but we kind of picked it up. It was kind of frustrating because we practiced all week, we fell back a little bit. Coach at halftime was kind of on us a little bit and said that's not our game, we can play better. And we came out and did that."

Q: After they cut it to 21-13, you came back with a three-play drive?
"We had to do that. Coach said if you give them life they're going to give us a game. So when they did that we tried to come out and really put some more points on the board to try to get their confidence back down. Because it was high after that score."

Q: Talk about how ASU quarterback Brandon Bridge played?
"Oh, he's a real good quarterback. He was real athletic, a long guy, he made us miss a couple of times. We were surprised with what he could do."

"A couple of times we had him sacked in the backfield and he got out of the pocket and threw it on the run. That's great for him, he did a real good job today."

Q: Coach said the team, the fans, everything felt a little flat today?
"Yes, we were flat. That's just inexcusable. Especially for the leaders, we have to find a way to get the team up and get the energy level good. The first half when they came out to play we knew in the second half it would depend on ourselves instead of using the energy from the crowd."

"The defense did a bad job and that's something we have to improve on. We just have ot play better on our side of the ball and avoid those situations."

Q: How big on 4th-and-6 was you breaking up the pass?
"It was real big for us. We just found a way to get off the field."

Q: Was the defense concerned in the second and third quarters when Alcorn kept getting receivers open, but didn't take advantage?
"I won't say we were worried. We just had to get on the chalkboard and find awa to get us in the right positions. We didn't do as good job as we know we can and that's something we have to improve on."

Q: How much did Nick Bell's situation impact the team?
"It did affect us a little bit. But we knew we had to go out there and play for him, that was one of our main goals. We just had to stay focused even though it was a bad situation."

"Houston and Florida are two real good teams. But we know what we're capable of, we're just going to get prepared for them and get set to go come out with a win."

Q: Did you think you were going to get all the way on the last touchdown?
"If I'd had about 15 more yards I probably would have got caught. I was tight when I came in, you know, I had to rotate. But I did it so I got in."

Q: When you broke the line of scrimmage did you know you had it on the 75-yard run?

Q: Yeah, it was 75 yards!
"I didn't know! But when I got to the secondary I saw daylight so I took it."

"The O-line the did a great job blocking for us, when they do that we can make things happen."

Q: Was that the sort of offensive balance you wanted?
"It's always good to have a balanced offense. The run opened up the pass and the pass opened up the run. So whenever we get like that it should give results like that."

"It's always good to have a quarterback that can run because you have to respect the whole backfield. Really, the whole offense. Just by having that potential for the quarterback to run opens up a lot of things."

Q: You made it look easy today?
"Oh, it was pretty easy. I went out there and executed. The O-line gave me a lot of time, all I had to do was make the right reads."

Q: You showed no rust when you would come back in the game after Tyler Russell played?
"It felt good, I just had to go out there and lead and make a play."

Q: You did not have to rush the ball as often today?
"Yes sir, that felt good."

Q: Was that by plan or what you read in the defense?
"It was just how I read their defense. I think they were pretty good overall."

Q: What did you think of Chad Bumphis' game?
"Chad played great, he's a very talented guy and he made a lot of catches."

Q: What made you think you could fit that second touchdown in between two defenders?
"They were playing one outside guy on the back side. Coach asked me why I squeezed it in like that, I said I saw a little tight throw and saw Chad and squeezed the ball in"

Q: Bumphis said he wouldn't have thrown that pass!
"You have to trust yourself and that's what I did. I just trusted myself."

Q: What did you think of Chad in the wildcat?
"He did pretty good."

Q: You didn't get to play last year against Houston, what are you looking for this week?
"Just going back out there and working hard in practice. Executing on offense, come out and doing what we did this week. We just have to eliminate penalties."

Q: What did you think of Tobias Smith's running abilities?
"Aw, it was good, what Tobias did. Before I could even pick up the ball he'd already got it."

"We kind of started slow. But the second half we shut them out so we did a better job. We still didn't play as well as we wanted to but we got the job done."

Q: Talk about the challenge Bridge gave the defense?
"He was faster than what we thought he was going to be, he's 6-5 and can definitely play."

"We've got to do a better job covering and stuff like that. We're definitely not happy with how we played, but that's how it goes sometimes."

"We had a lot of freshmen playing and they got some good experience for the later part of the season and the next couple of years for their careers."

Q: Now you have to prepare for an explosive Houston team?
"They have a very powerful offense and we'll have to do a very good job stopping them. Because they can definitely make some big plays on offense."

Q: Did it surprise you their freshman quarterback was that effective?
"He's really outstanding to be a true freshman and to be playing. He's a gem so you're probably going to hear about him more through the next three years."

Q: Did the defense make any changes the second half?
"We just executed what we had. The coaches always come out with a great gameplan. People say after halftime we always do better or whatever, the coaches always have the best plan to play. We just have to execute it, and we went out and executed."

Q: How much did it help that after Alcorn State scored the offense had an answer?
"We were kind of sad today because the offense won the game for us. We felt we didn't hold up our end per se. But we did a better job the second half. But the offense really did a great job today."

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