From the Locker Room

OXFORD, Miss. -- Ole Miss head coach Houston Nutt and select players met the media following Saturday's 42-24 win.

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Ole Miss head coach Houston Nutt:

Opening statement:

"There's nothing like winning. Winning's very precious. I was really proud to be in that celebrated locker room with these guys. We've got to learn how to win. A lot of new faces. You take that first-team tailback (Brandon Bolden) and that second-team tailback (Enrique Davis) and you put them on the side, it's a different, different deal. It's a little bit harder. But I thought Jeff Scott stepped up for us. Over 200 something all-purpose yards. Korvic Neat stepped up. Devin Thomas stepped up. H.R. Greer. I was really proud of how hard our guys played. Wayne Dorsey kind of kick started it with the interception, and our special teams were good all night. Boy, we needed every point because that's a good team, we knew that coming in. They can throw and catch, and they kept doing it there. Our guys are getting turnovers, and we're being really stingy in the red zone. A lot different from last year. I'm very proud of that. We've just got to keep working. As we turn our heads now and go to the SEC, preparation is going to be critical. All hands on deck, ‘cause we all know how tough this league is."

On letting SIU back in the game:

"I just like winning, and that was the whole goal, No. 1. When you have that many new faces, you don't ever know what's going to happen. If Zack Stoudt gets that ball out on that screen, I think that goes 70 yards. But it slips out of his hand. That's what's so crazy about this game. (The ball) doesn't bounce up and down; it bounces this way (left and right). It's funny. It's just hard. I had every intention of playing Nick Parker and a lot of those younger guys. But we didn't have that opportunity."

On the play of quarterbacks Zack Stoudt and Randall Mackey:

"I thought Zack did a good job. They did a lot of stunting and blitzing. Got to watch film, but I thought Zack did a good job. The one thing that Zack can do is he can sit in that pocket, take a hit and his eyes are focused on the receiver. Takes a real guy to sit in that pocket, knowing you're going to get hit, and he can do that. Where Randall has feet. He can escape and make things happen with movement. I thought both of them played very well. For Randall not playing, really, in a month, did very well. Zack did a good job getting the ball down the field for us. He's an excellent thrower. You just like to have (back) the one that slipped out of his hand. That just can't happen. Can't happen at a crucial time like that."

On the tailback situation and Jeff Scott:

"Jeff Scott has to be (the guy). Korvic Neat, as well. Devin Thomas, kind of an in-between-the-tackles guy for us. You got three guys that we're really going to depend on, and we'll keep bringing Chief Brown. We're awaiting for Enrique Davis and Brandon Bolden, until they get back. We don't know how quick they can get back. Those are our guys. Those are the cards we got dealt now. They have to be ready."

On the two-quarterback system:

"I'd like for one guy to come on, but whatever it takes. If we have to do both, we've done that before. David (Lee) and I've both done that before. So if we need to do that, we'll do that. That doesn't bother me. As long as we take care of the ball and we don't get out of rhythm. I just think we're taking too long getting in and out of the huddle. I want to get that cleaned up a little bit. Just the efficiency of just getting ready to go. Everything in a game is different. I'm glad (Mackey) has these plays under his belt now."

Offensive lineman Bradley Sowell:

On the play of the offensive line:

"We picked it up later on in the game. At the beginning, we didn't do that great. We finally settled down and picked up our assignments and got some push at the end."

On if he is concerned with the line's struggles through two games:

"Not at all. If you noticed the last drive, that's really what we're all about. Hopefully we'll continue to do that."

On the last drive, after Sowell was animated on the sidelines:

"It's just the kind of ball I like to play. Everybody just kind of dug down. I was just sick of not getting push. We lined up and ran the same play seven or eight times. That's what we need to build on. That's what we're all about. We're big. You know, let's get after people. Let's go right up the gut."

On Jeff Scott:

"He basically took over the game. He's a game-breaker, man. He returned a punt, had a bunch of touchdowns. He's fast. We tried to utilize him with a bunch of zones and stuff, outside zones. We it came down to the end of the game, it was what we were all about."

On finishing the game:

"I'm glad we did finish, ‘cause the guys got to feel what it's like to finish a win. But, you know, sometimes you get that feeling of ‘Oh no, here we go again.' Today, we did a good job of doing what we do best. Let's line up and run the football at the end of the game. That's why I was really animated over there. I was telling the guys ‘Look, let's do what we do. Let's stop BSing around.' We lined up and ran the same play eight times."

Wide receiver Ja-Mes Logan:

On Jeff Scott:

"First touchdown out of Jeff, we were just like ‘OK, we're just going to follow Jeff. We're just going to let Jeff lead.' He did a good job. Brandon Bolden out, Enrique Davis out, him and Devin Thomas did a really good job of stepping up."

Defensive end Kentrell Lockett:

On allowing teams to come back, not finishing:

"You know what? It pretty much seems like every team that's, like, out of conference and not SEC teams, seem pretty confident when they come to play us, for some odd reason. I don't know really what it is. It just seems like everyone feels confident, everyone feels they can move the ball on us. We've just got to play ball and execute and try to change people's minds of that. Just do what we got to do."

More on finishing:

"If you want to win big, if you want to be a defense that's actually know and is respected -- you know, holding the other team to a shutout or under 100 yards rushing -- we just got to learn how to finish. We appreciate the W, we're thankful for the W. They're hard to come by. But we know this game could have been over a long time ago. We gave them confidence, we let them get back in, we let them move the ball when they didn't need to. We just got to learn from it and learn how to finish the game."

On how the team has to finish:

"Everyone has it in them to finish. But at the same, when you're on the field, you have to have all 11 trying to finish and keep them down. It can't be just one person. It's got to be the whole team doing that. When we get on that page, we're going to be all right. We're going to hold teams to shutouts."

Defensive end Wayne Dorsey:

On his interception:

"I saw the quarterback kept taking steps back, kept moving back. I knew it was a screen. Just tried to get off the cut block and tried to get my hands in the air. Threw it right to one of my hands, batted it up. Kind of lost it in the lights; luckily it fell back in. Tried to get in the end zone."

On almost scoring a touchdown:

"I looked back, man, and I looked (left) and it was nobody coming. And then I looked back towards the end zone, and there was a guy diving at my legs. I was kind of disappointed. Probably won't get that opportunity again. I got (some razzing by teammates) on the sidelines after that play, and pretty much for the rest of the half."

On the team creating turnovers:

"Hungry, man. Hungry. That's one of the emphases Coach (Tyrone) Nix, Coach (Keith) Burns and Coach (Terry) Price, our whole coaching staff, emphasized. We can control games if we create turnovers. Everybody on the defense takes it upon themselves to try to create one and then celebrate. We truly feed off of another player on the defense making a big play."

On Southern Illinois' big plays and ability to move the ball:

"I can't really say. I haven't seen the tape yet. I guess got to give them credit. They found something that was working and kept using it."

Linebacker Mike Marry

On not allowing them to score more points late in the game:

"I was proud of our team for not giving up and not letting them come back, and finishing the game up."

On having trouble stopping the opposing offense on third and fourth downs:

"It's something we need to work on. But as the season goes on, we need to improve on it. We'll really key on that this week, trying to get off the field on third downs."

On the success SIU had running the football with 223 yards on the ground:

"We've just got to work on being gap sound and continuing to fly to the ball. When we fly to the ball, even if one person makes a mistake, we can overcome that when we fly to the ball. They had a few big plays on us, but I was proud of our defense for not giving up. We came up with some big stops and some big turnovers when we needed them."

On if the Jacksonville State loss from last year crept into their minds when it was 35-24 with time left on the clock:

"No, we try to keep that in the past, and take each play like it's the first play of the game. Just play hard and try to pick our enthusiasm back up to where it was at the beginning of the game."

Quarterback Randall Mackey:

On his play:

"I felt pretty good. I kinda messed up a couple of times. But that's how it is your first time out there on the field."

On how he felt like he handled the offense:

"Basically it was mostly just stay focused and just drive the ball down the field. That was it. I felt I did pretty good. At the end of the day we got the win.

On the quick start helping the team:

"Jeff Scott came out running the ball, and he had the punt return. The defense was stopping them every series. So we started out really good. We've got to keep doing better in the third and fourth quarters, just keep on getting better."

Quarterback Zack Stoudt:

On the game:

"It's a good win. It's nice to get the first one. Get some confidence. Get some momentum going into the SEC next week."

On his play:

"I played OK. I made some mistakes. I'll look at the film tomorrow and see exactly what mistakes and the amount of mistakes I made personally. But we got the win."

On Jeff Scott running so well:

"That was huge. Running the ball this week. We needed to prove that we could, not just to people but to ourselves. Jeff did a good job of that. Devin did a good job of that. Korvic Neat, then receiver we put back there, did a good job on a couple of runs. It's important because other teams now know we still have a running threat until Brandon comes back.

On the fumble he had when the ball slipped out of his hand:

"That would have been nice. It slipped out and it was the first screen we ran all night that actually had some promise. But I didn't get it off."

On his comfort level this week as opposed to last week:

"Really it's the same. I guess it's a confidence boost knowing you're the starter. But we're all still fighting and competing. Really it's all about winning. It's not really about starting. I guess the comfort level is…I was comfortable. I was excited. I was happy. But we're all still competing and just trying to win."

On having a week with No. 1 team reps:

"It helps a lot. Being with the same guys snap after snap, you get comfortable with guys on routes, on blocks, on handoffs, everything. Just hearing their calls and them hearing your calls. It was a good week and was nice to have all those reps. We were kinda settling in as an offense and trying to find our personality."

Running back Jeff Scott:

On how it felt to play as he did:

"I knew my two senior running backs were down this week, so throughout the whole week they gave me a bunch of reps. The coaches did a great job preparing me to go out there tonight to carry the load. I just went out there and played as hard as I could."

On the week of practice:

"Practice was very difficult. I was touching the ball a lot and I was very fatigued. I had Devin Thomas and Korvic Neat out there to help me. But it was really difficult. But it showed out there on the field that hard work pays off."

On being the feature back, returning punts and kicks, and how he is holding up:

"Brandon Bolden, he'll be back real soon. I've just got to work harder in practice, run more sprints to prepare myself for these games. I was pretty tired with punt returns and kick returns. But it's something we'll discuss with the coaches throughout the week, if I'll be able to handle it – kick return, punt return, and running back. But I'm pretty sure I have 100 percent confidence in my coaches that they'll make a good decision that's best for me and the team."

On if he was surprised at his big day:

"I was surprised. I had no clue I'd run back a punt return and score three touchdowns in the first quarter," he said. "But I felt good."

On the punt return:

"I just caught the ball and I saw everybody cave in, so I just ran on my instincts. I ran right and they set up a wall. I just bent the corner with my speed. I had one guy to beat and that was the kicker. He put his hand out and I was trying my best to stay in bounds. And I got in the end zone."

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