Nation Exclusive: Noah Whiteside

Is Noah going through a sophomore slump? Does he understand the 10 yard rule when fielding punts? Did Coach Holtz affect his confidence with earlier comments concerning punt returners? The questions are answered here in this exclusive Noah Whiteside interview on Gamecock Nation ...

Noah Whiteside Interview Pre-Kentucky

Rooster: Noah, how has it gone after the Ole Miss loss?

Noah: We put that behind us. We've worked hard and we are ready to give it everything we've got. You know, if anyone thinks we did not work hard before the Ole Miss game then that's not right. We worked just as hard for that game as all of them but you know, Ole Miss just did what they had to do and they made plays. We work hard every week. We are ready to go play Kentucky and get back on a winning deal. When you win everybody is happy but when you lose you have to bounce back.

Rooster: Will you be fielding punts this week?

Noah: I don't know. It will be either me or Meat I guess but they have not made that decision yet so I don't know.

Rooster: You were catching every punt kicked your way a few weeks ago. Now it seems you are getting away from all of them. There has to be a happy medium somewhere Noah. Has your confidence been affect or something? Are you aware of the ten yard rule about not fielding punts inside the ten yard line? Is it something to do with something Coach Holtz said to you or something? Hel us to understand.

Noah: Something Coach Holtz said? You mean about letting the ball bounce other than having me catch it? Nah, that's not the case at all. If I don't feel like I'm gonna catch it then I ain't gonna catch it. If I feel like I can catch it then I'll catch it and do something with it.

Rooster: Then none of this has anything to do with what Coach Holtz said about finding someone who knows when to catch the ball and when not to field a punt? You are doing this because you don't feel like you can field all of these punts all of the sudden?

Noah: Yeah, I'm doing it because of me.

Rooster: Noah, you were fielding punts over your shoulder earlier in the season. Now you are letting balls kicked in front of you hit the ground and bounce down the field. Is there a confidence issue with you right now?

Noah: Nah. I'm still confident catching the ball it's just at times when it's in the air I look down and see the gunners and if I feel the gunners are real close to me then I am going to throw up the fair catch sign.

Rooster: Is there more pressure on you and Troy Williamson with Matthew Thomas on the sidelines?

Noah: Oh yeah, but me and Troy are going to just have to make more plays, especially me.

Rooster: Are you talking about the dropped ball in the endzone last week?

Noah: Not just that but any play, but yeah, that play too. I should have caught that ball. I have a rule and my rule is that if it touches my hands I am supposed to catch it. That dropped ball last week was my fault.

Rooster: Has the quarterback switching here and there affected you in any way?

Noah: Nah. I mean they still run the same plays. The ball still gets thrown in the air and I am still supposed to just catch it. So nah, it doesn't matter who is in the quarterback spot as far as I am concerned. My job stays the same.

Rooster: Sounds good Noah. Good luck this week against Kentucky.

Noah: Thanks

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