Monday - Weekly Football Press Conference Notes

South Carolina (5-5, 2-5) faces No. 15/18 Florida (7-3, 5-2) Saturday at Williams-Brice Stadium. Kickoff is slated for 12:30 p.m. before a regional television audience on JP Sports. The Gamecocks and Gators are each playing their final conference game of the season before facing intrastate rivals to conclude the regular season. USC head coach Lou Holtz met the media on Monday for his weekly press conference and offered the following comments ...

(on Demetris Summers)
"Demetris Summers came back to Columbia last Friday and will definitely miss this game vs. Florida, but could be back against Clemson. I am not holding him out for any reason. The trainers make the decision and their philosophy is that he had a concussion and after a concussion clears and the headaches are gone, we take seven days. When he clears up, we will wait seven days. There is nothing more important than a young man's health whether it is Demetris Summers or anyone else."

(on the defense at Arkansas)
"Our defensive line played pretty well at Arkansas, particularly Moe Thompson. I thought Freddy Saint-Preux and Darrell Shropshire played well along with Lance Laury. You would think that is weird since we gave up 247 yards rushing, but 140 of that came on seven plays. On the other 41 plays we gave up 107 yards, 2.8 yards per carry. We gave up too many big plays on missed alignments, assignments, etc. What also hurt us was their third down conversions. Just because you gave up a lot of yards doesn't mean we didn't have guys who played well in that game."

(on the offense at Arkansas)
"Our offensive line and tailbacks played very well. Our biggest problem was in the red zone. We fumbled on their two-yard line when we were down 7-3. You cannot do that. Travelle Wharton, Jabari Levey, John Strickland, Chris White, Na'Shan Goddard, Jonathan Alston all are playing well. Losing Demetris Summers hurt but I thought Cory Boyd and Daccus Turman played well."

(on Daniel Weaver)
"I think Daniel Weaver is kicking about as well as any kicker I have had in many a year. That excludes John Carney, but he is very, very solid. I think part of that is having Joey Bowers hold and Daniel getting some fundamental things straight."

(on this week's game)
"Mentally, I don't know how we will be. Young people bounce back and you have no other choice. We have never beaten Florida. They defeated Georgia, LSU and Arkansas this year and have won four in a row and five of their last six."

(on the Gator offense)
"They have an excellent offensive line that is big, strong and athletic. I think that their tight end, Ben Troupe, may be the best in the league. He is having an outstanding year and is very athletic and a great threat. Their tailback, Ran Carthon is averaging over five yards per carry. They have a lot of very talented receivers but not a true 'go-to' guy like they have had in previous years. Chris Leak is special and we all knew that coming out of high school. He has 60 percent accuracy, great poise, runs the team and has as good a touch on the ball as anyone I have seen. They can run the ball and throw the ball."

(on the Florida defense)
"They are very solid defensively and rank second in the conference in pass efficiency defense and have 19 interceptions. Keiwan Ratliff has eight interceptions and is one of four seniors in the defensive backfield. They have eight seniors that start on defense and are playing very well. Charlie Strong is doing a great job down there and has a strong team that runs very well and is very athletic with a secondary that is outstanding."

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