The following are player quotes after the Rebels defeated Arkansas 30-17 in Vaught-Hemingway Stadium Saturday afternoon.
QB Jevan Snead: (On the feeling) It feels great to continue what we started last week and to do it against an SEC opponent. I'm so thankful for my teammates and for our coaching staff. They all deserved this one. We've had our struggles on offense this year, but we stuck together, believed in each other and worked our way out of it. (On his fast start) Arkansas is a good team and we needed to get them on their heels early to set the tone. Our coaches had a great gameplan that got us all into the flow of the game and we executed better. We gained some momentum and never really lost it. For the first time all year, we felt like we were going to score every time we went on the field. That's a really good feeling, especially when you have had some struggles before. (On his teammates) The OL was spectacular. They have been improving a little each week, but they put it all together this week. The backs ran hard and our receivers had a complete game, catching the ball and blocking downfield. It was just 11 guys doing their jobs and being on the same page. (On the run game) It was clicking today and that opened everything up. To get the running game going was huge. It helped all of us get on a roll and gave us all another shot of confidence. Like I said, we felt it coming together last week, but to do it two weeks in a row just adds fuel to the fire. We are feeding off this feeling now. (On Dexter McCluster's 260-yard day) What can you say? I can't say enough. He just sparks us. When he's rolling, we feel like we can beat anyone. He is so good. (On rolling out more) We knew Arkansas was going to come after us - to me, they are the most improved defense in the conference - so we felt if we could move the pocket a little and throw on the run some that it would get them off-balance. It worked and helped our offense because it gave them something else they had to worry about.
C Daverin Geralds: (On the OL's play) We kept our confidence and togetherness through some tough times earlier. We knew we were close, even though it didn't look like it at times. We knew we were going to put it together and we felt like it was going to be pretty soon. We executed well today, for the most part. We knew we could do better than we were doing. Today, it finally clicked for us. We needed this shot of confidence against a quality SEC front. (On RG Brandon Green) He had a great game today. He was filling in for Rishaw Johnson and there was no dropoff at all. He played his heart out and produced time and time again. I am very happy for him and proud of him. He's tough and he never takes a play off.
DE Kentrell Lockett: (On pressuring Mallett) It was big for us to get to him. When we started watching film on him, we knew if we didn't get to him it would be a long day. We knew we had to make him move, make him feel us and hit him. He scrambled more than he has all year, but we were still able to get after him and either make him uncomfortable or sack him. I have to give him credit - he never flinched. He stayed in there and kept throwing, but I think our pressure started catching up to him toward the end of the game. We had a great gameplan and attacked him from every angle known to football. We brought people from every possible angle and Arkansas could never hone in on where we were going to attack them. I don't think they ever got any offensive momentum other than the drive before half that got them a TD. (On stopping the run) Everybody stayed in their gaps and did what we were supposed to do. When you play assignment-sound football, you can stop the run. We were tuned in today against the run. Even though we knew Mallett and their passing game is really good, our top goal was to stop their run and make them one-dimensional. Once they were one-dimensional, we could let the defensive front go and get after him in the pocket. It worked like a charm. Everyone on defense had plenty to eat today. (On the magnitude of the win) We are starting to feel like we did last year about this time. The Arkansas game was our launching pad last year and hopefully it will be again this year because we are trying to do bigger things than we did last year.
WR Dexter McCluster: (On his game) I'm just happy I got the opportunity to show what I can do. I was able to get in my zone today. I knew going into the game I would be getting the ball a lot, but the coaches prepared me for it all week. It felt like I was back in high school. It feels good to get the ball in my hands. (On the 64-yard scamper) RT John Jerry actually came up to me on the sidelines and said I was due for one. He knew a big play was coming. Shortly after he said that, I broke it. (On besting the Arkansas defense) They're very physical, but we thought we could get the edge on them. The zone plays worked well for us. I haven't been getting many screens, but I love them now. (On his comfort level in the game) It's been hard to get anything going this season with only getting the ball once or twice a game. It's hard to find a rhythm. But being in the game that long, with that many touches, something was bound to happen. (On if the increased workload was intentional) I was at running back all week. Coach Nutt asked me if I was ready to carry the load and I told him I was. All he did was give me a smile. I tried to not to get too excited, but I called everyone I knew when I got home and told them to get ready. I was very excited that Coach Nutt gave me this opportunity. (On how he held up with his smallish frame) I'm a little sore, but that's to be expected. Everything is still intact and tomorrow I'll feel good. (On literally running out of his shoe before halftime) I actually ran out of my shoe. The front of my cleat ripped open. It happened in the second quarter, but I waited until it got a little worse before I told anyone. I love those cleats. I've worn them forever. I don't like new cleats. The coaches asked me if I wanted another pair, but I told them all I needed a left one and I'd be good. (On where the team stands seven games in) I'm just happy with where we are right now as a team. We're in a great position to win out and are playing really good football. But we just have to take it one game at a time.
CB Marshay Green: (On defending Arkansas QB Ryan Mallett) That's a big-time quarterback. He's got a bright future in front of him. We just wanted to go out and compete. But as far as them coming into our house and slinging the ball, that wasn't going to happen. (On the defensive line) The defensive front made it easy on us in the secondary because they kept pressure all game. They played hard the whole game. We knew this would be a tough challenge, but we came out and got a big win for Coach Nutt. (On what the personal implications of the game) This was a big game. We went out and got this win for Coach Nutt, basically. We know the history that he has with Arkansas. This was an emotional game for him. But we had practiced hard all week and were focused. This was for him. (On his health) I'm good. I could've played last week, but I had to listen to the doctors. I'm just glad I was able to come back for this one. (On the tipped pass) I was defending Childs on the post route and I felt my hand hit the ball. Kendrick (Lewis) had come over the top, but somehow the ball just bounced into the other guy's hands. It was crazy.
DT LaMark Armour: (On his key third down sack early in the fourth quarter) It was the right moment and the right time. The coaches did a great job of calling it. I had to make a play. In a way, it was a game-changer that gave us more momentum. Then they missed a field goal and that was it. (On what the season has been like for him) It's meant a ton for me. I've been injury-riddled my entire career. This is the seventh game and I've played in them all. Coming into the season, I had played maybe six total games. Hopefully, we I can keep on moving forward and improving. (On the momentum gained in the win) It's a good win. It gives us momentum and is a big turnaround for us. We're 5-2 and can move forward to get better. (On the collective effort of the team) We still can do better on defense. But in all three phases, this game was by far our most complete game. We can get better, though. This isn't the best we can play and we know that.
FS Kendrick Lewis: (On the game) It was a tremendous challenge, but we were able to get a big win. Arkansas is a good team. This was a big game for us that will give us some momentum going forward. (On limiting Mallett) He's a strong-armed kid and a good quarterback. We came in knowing what his expectations were and that he wanted to throw the ball around. But we played within our defense and were able to slow him down. (On the defensive line) Our defensive line has been great all year at applying pressure on opposing quarterbacks, so this was a big game for them. They came through. (On the tipped pass) It was just a good play gone bad. I thought I had it, but once I got up there, there was some contact and it ricochet into the hands of their wide receiver.
DT Marcus Tillman: (On the defensive front) We just played hard. We had to switch some things up because they were responding to some of our packages, but we were able to leave it out on the field and get a win. (On getting pressure) Whenever you can get to a good quarterback, it really messes up their offense. It gave us the momentum we needed to finish off the game. (On stopping the run game) We just stayed physical. We played our keys and were assignment sound. (On getting Mallett off-balance) They gave us freedom and we pinned our ears back. We went after them.
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