Pre-UK Lou Holtz Press Conference Notes and Quotes

The South Carolina Gamecocks (3-2, 0-2) open a three-game Southeastern Conference homstand by hosting the Kentucky Wildcats (2-3, 0-2) on Thursday night in an ESPN prime-time national broadcast. Kickoff is slated for 7:45 p.m. USC head coach Lou Holtz met with the media on Monday to preview this week's match-up and offered the following comments ...

(on recent practice work)
"During the last eight or nine days we have had certain things that we wanted to do and improve our football team, and I think we have done that to a certain extent but we have not improved defensively to the extent that I would have liked to improve. One reason for that is the inordinant number of knee injuries that we have had. We have had seven knee ligament injuries this season. That is unusual. Because of all the various ailments, we have had to move too many people around and we really have not been able to fall into a system. Lance Laury's knee not coming along and then Ricardo Hurley hurting his ankle has caused us to move linebackers all around. It is very difficult when you keep having to move people. Now with George Gause's knee injury, trying to get that adjusted has been difficult. We do not have a permanent switch there and that concerns me. We need to find a rush end, and it may be Darel Slay."

(on the defensive line)
"I have to complement Jason Capers. He has been one of the more pleasant surprises and has become a very good football player. For the first time since he hurt his foot last spring, I expect Eric Stroman to play some on Thursday. This will be the first time he will be in a game since last spring. I do not how he will play since he just came back to us. I also think Darrell Shropshire is having a very good week."

(on the offense)
"Offensively, the key is our quarterback. We have thrown the third-most amount of interceptions in the conference and that needs to be reduced greatly. I think Dondrial Pinkins has had a good 10 days of preparation and I feel good about him. I think our offensive line has improved and keeps getting better. Woodly Telfort, Stephen Sene and possibly Chris White will time on Thursday. They are three players who definitely deserve to see more playing time."

(on Kentucky's offense)
"Jared Lorenzen owns every passing and total yardage record at Kentucky and that is pretty impressive when you realize that Tim Couch and some others have played there. Derek Abney was an All-American last year and leads the SEC in all-purpose yardage and is fifth in the country. He is a great return man and is one touchdown return away from setting a NCAA record. He is a very dangerous threat and they run him on reverses and can cause a lot of problems. Their offensive line has two award candidates and is very good to go along with great speed and a tremendous quarterback."

(on the Wildcats)
"Kentucky has played very well. They should be 4-1 and maybe even 5-0 at this point but lost a heartbreaker to Louisville and a game to Florida in which they outplayed them. Rich Brooks is a good football coach and has a changed offense that presents a few more problems than they have in the past, especially with the running game and play-action pass. Their offense is No. 1 in the SEC is red-zone scoring."

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