Coach O - 'Proud of my team'

The following is the Q & A session with Coach Ed Orgeron after the Rebels' win at Memphis.

The following are Coach Ed Orgeron's comments after his first game and first victory at Ole Miss.

Orgeron: I'm proud of the way my team competed today. Memphis is a fine football team. Give them credit. Give Tommy West credit. It was an excellent football game.

Q: Talk about Micheal Spurlock's performance.

Orgeron: He made plays when we had to have them. I thought the fourth down call – we decided to go for it because we had trouble making field goals so we decided to go for it – and he made the big play when he had to. I'm really proud of him.

Q: Talk about deciding to go for it on fourth and 5 at the 12-yard line, the play Spurlock scored on.

Orgeron: I thought that was a no-brainer. We had to get some points there. We had to generate something. After that last field goal, I was tired of seeing those. So we decided to go for it.

Q: What's tougher, being a head coach or a defensive coordinator?

Orgeron: I think it's a great combination of both. I'm glad that I'm able to do it.

Q: What did you talk to your team about in the last timeout before the final interception?

Orgeron: Well we had our nickel defense on the field and we had to put our base defense in to get the right defense called. I credit Coach Rippon. He said Coach we've gotta go base. So we went with it like we worked it all camp. And today it worked.

Q: Talk about Garry Pack.

Orgeron: That shows what our program is about. It's about competition, and everybody's going to get the opportunity that works hard. Even if you lose the position, you get a chance to win it back. I'm very proud of Garry.

Q: Talk about the job your defense did on DeAngelo Williams today.

Orgeron: We had a lot of defense geared to stopping DeAngelo. We gave up a little bit in the passing game. But I didn't think we could just let him run the football. In the fourth quarter he showed what kind of football player he is. He busted a couple on us. But I'm proud of our defense, especially the way they tackled today.

Q: When your defense made the interception and there were only 15 seconds to go, I believe we saw you smile for the first time. Talk about your emotions now.

Orgeron: I'm just proud for the whole Ole Miss family. Everybody since I got here has just been great. Just to win a football game, we're really proud to win this game.

Q: Talk about the decision to start Jeremy Garrett and how he played.

Orgeron: Jeremy played well. Jeremy's one of the guys that showed up in camp and has come along. He's going to be a fine football player for us.

Q: Your team was late getting back on the field after halftime and got a delay of game penalty. Talk about what happened there.

Orgeron: We were talking a little bit (in the locker room), getting them fired up. Somebody told me we had a minute left. I think that was just a mistake on my part.

Q: Was it fitting that the game was a defensive contest?

Orgeron: I would have liked for our offense to have scored a few more points. But we needed to win it any way we can right now. I'm really proud of the way our defense played.

Q: Coach your wife just mentioned that you were calm and confident. Talk about that.

Orgeron: Yesterday I was a little bit nervous but today I was really calm. I just thought of all the things I had to do. I was really calm and patient with the way we prepared for the game. All we could do was go out there and play. Gametime is fun. When I got out here I was really confident. I thought it was all just fun, and I just enjoyed the whole day.

Q: Did you think this day would ever get here?

Orgeron: You know, on a daily basis we work so hard that we just take it one day at a time.

Q: It's been a tough week in the states of Mississippi and Louisiana.

Orgeron: Yes it has, and the more the week went on, the more we found out about the tragedy down there. I'm praying for everybody and wishing everybody on the coast and in southern Louisiana and southern Mississippi the best. We know they are competitors and we know they will survive.

Q: How did it feel to look up there in the stands and see your crowd here and so supportive, a lot of them affected by last week's events?

Orgeron: I told the team we wanted to give the fans three hours of something to cheer for, something positive. That's what we set out to do.

Q: Did you think the game would turn out to be the defensive game that it was?

Orgeron: No. But I didn't really know. As it went on, I knew we were playing really good defense. That was one of the reasons we went for it on fourth down (when Spurlock scored). I thought we could stop them on defense.

Q: So sum things up for us right now as to how you feel.

Orgeron: I'm just really proud of our football team and the way we played and competed. It was a hard-fought battle that came down to the last play. We told our team we had to play for 60 minutes, and somebody had to make the last play. We caused some turnovers there in the second half. That was the key to the football game. Our program is about the ball. It was a win today. We're 1-0. We have a lot of work to do, but I feel good today.

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