Looking forward to this week, very good football team. This is about my 11th time as a head coach to go against LSU, and they always look the same to me. Always look beautiful. They always look good in a uniform, whether it be offensive line, defensive line, wide receivers, backs, whatever it is. They fill out a uniform, and they have some awfully good football players. We have to do a very good job this week of being physical in a game like this. And everybody has to have their best week of practice.
On injuries after Monroe
We came out pretty well. First group didn't play that much actually. I expect everybody to be ready to go. A couple bumps and bruises, but nothing serious.
On similarities between Ole Miss and LSU
We do have a lot of the same traits (like running the ball and stopping the run). These guys are defending national champions. And there are times where they look very good. They don't give up much, times where they don't give up anything. There have been a couple games where Florida and Georgia got hot, Florida is hot right now, and Stafford got hot. They are so athletic, they can run, they are big, they are physical. The offensive line does an excellent job and comes off the ball with great pad level. The backs are tough, very strong.
On LSU coming back to win over Troy and what that does for them
They got down, 31-whatever it was. It starts with their defense. When you watch the film, it starts with their defense. They get turnovers. They set up offense with great field position. They physically wore them down. They do a good job of running the ball, couple of playactions. I don't know what their mindset is, but I know what to expect. Been going against them for a long time, know the atmosphere that will be there. Have to get ready for a physical ballgame. It is tough, and the history, it has always been tough. Just got to get ready to go.
On taking anything from beating LSU last year, and the team's mindset to improve bowl status
It needs to be a mindset where they are hungry. We had a good start Sunday, proud of the way they played. But now you jump back in the SEC. You have to be very hungry. Buckle up both chin straps and get ready to go. Last year seems like so long ago. Like I mentioned, you understand what you are facing, they type of athlete. You take the names off the back of their jerseys, every year they are the same, big, strong, fast. Special teams scare you to death with Holiday. You have to do an excellent job of covering, or it could get out of hand at anytime. They are so athletic. Again, I am more concerned with our guys, how you approach things. You are the way you practice. Our guys, especially the last three weeks, have been good, and I am very anxious that they will continue to do that. Our seniors will keep leading this team.
On seeing that hunger Sunday to put Monroe game behind them and move on
That is the way to play our of conference, and the way to go attack somebody. Play a complete ballgame. It is nothing to be cocky about. It is just the way it should be, and the habit you need to form when you get out of conference. Now when you go back in conference, you are facing a real football team that has won a national title, got that trophy put up, they've been in the SEC title game numerous times. So, you are facing a team with a lot of tradition.
On kickoff coverage
The biggest thing is the want to, the pride. ‘Put me in there coach, I want to cover a kick.' That is the attitude you want. You have to be very physical, very fast. Be good tacklers. Everybody has a job and a role to do. Starting with the kicker. Because as you know from years past, that is how things get out of hand. That real estate is so valuable. It is so important this week with Holiday, because he is one of the best return men in the SEC.
On any surprises Saturday
I knew we would play well because of how we practiced. I was surprised at how quickly we jumped on them in the first half. How the score got out of hand really quick.
On any carryover to this weekend
What you are hoping to take, we are playing a different level of competition this time, but what you are hoping, is the consistency, no penalties, no turnovers, playing fast, good intensity. Those are the things you have to take with you in a hostile environment, having to take those traits with you. Or it can be a long day.
On Nutt's first meeting with team and what his intent was during that meeting
The very first meeting, in this room, I asked our players ‘how many players in this room have experienced a bowl game' and not one guy could raise a hand. Here is our first goal. We want to take these seniors to a bowl game, and I want our underclassmen to help them reach that goal. They have had tough times and not much success. I want you to follow the seniors, I want the seniors to take hold of the team, take ownership, and I want everyone to give their all and dedicate the season to the seniors, help them get to a bowl. Because if you do that, you are going with them.
On the importance of increasing bowl presence by continuing to win
We talked about that. Felt that Vanderbilt, Wake Forest, South Carolina, there were some games that we gift wrapped, gave away some charitable gifts. When we don't turn it over, we have a good chance of winning the ballgame. When talking about November, that is the month. November is when they remember. So, we ought to be very hungry and excited to play in one of the greatest environments in college football. We are excited about it.
On LSU being 7-3 and everyone is mad in Baton Rouge. Does Nutt know what that feels like?
Yes, I do. I do. When you have high expectations, everybody expects you to win and win big, and of course LSU winning a national title, everybody down there assumes they are going right back to Atlanta, and this is the toughest league in America. Each and every Saturday, I don't care if it is Kentucky, Vanderbilt, South Carolina or Ole Miss, you have to buckle up and play. Your best football. I know that feeling, but I am worried about here. We need a great week of concentration and have to get better.
On Jevan improving accuracy
I thought he threw the deep ball, haven't hit the fade in a while. Lot of hours on that. I thought he stepped up under pressure and threw just a bullet to Andrew Harris over the middle. That was very impressive. We didn't throw the ball that much. But the fullback in the flat, he missed those in previous weeks, he was right on it there. There was improvement. But there are still some balls, Shay Hodge wide open on a post, he could hit that in his sleep. Tried to guide that in there, so wide open, couldn't believe it. We can all get better, that is the thing about it. Our players feel we can get better, and that is a good thing. Especially with that margin.
On Shay Hodge's health
He is ok, a heel bruise, but he looked good Sunday.
On Jason Cook's health
Full speed back from a concussion. Andy Hartman did a good job stepping in for him, but Jason will be back, will be ready to go.
Houston Nutt -
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