Gaines evaluated his play from Missouri's 31-27 win over Texas Tech.
"I feel like I played alright," said Gaines. "Not my best game, and also not my worst game. I feel like I played a pretty average football game. My grade came out pretty average. I'd like to play better, but I didn't play terrible."
During the Texas Tech game, Gaines recorded 2 pass-break-ups, giving him 16 PBUs for the season, which establishes a new single-season school record. His 18 passes defended, including 2 interceptions, ranks second in the FBS. I asked the sophomore about the school record.
"That's a great award to get," said the soft-spoken Gaines, whose 66 total tackles is fourth on the Tigers, behind the three starting LBs.
"To get an award as a sophomore is a good thing. So, I want to come out next year and try to have a better season, and maybe break more records, than I have this year."
Gaines said that he sees his sophomore season as his base-level performance, and that he wants to elevate his play in coming seasons. He said that he has high standards. I asked him how much better can he be?
"I can be a lot better, as far as my technique and my fundamentals," replied Gaines. "I feel like I can get better in every aspect of my game."
Gaines said that he is going to continue to work hard, and he said that he won't be satisfied with his performance. He wants to keep getting better.
Gaines played against Kansas last year, but he pointed out that this will be his first start against Kansas. He also admitted that he and his teammates know that this may be the last time Missouri plays Kansas for the foreseeable future.
"I feel like this is a great rivalry," said Gaines, who grew up in the Kansas City area, and has a few friends who play for the Jayhawks. "I'm excited to be a part of it…………………………….. I really want to come out and put it on them this season, and get away with a win."