SMU at work on Labor Day Monday

There was no BBQ cookout or swimming pool party for the SMU Mustangs this Labor Day holiday. After Friday's opening loss 56-27 to Rice the Mustangs are back to work, looking to improve every phase of their game as they prepare for their 2008 home opener this Saturday night against Texas State. Game time is at 7:00 p.m. Go inside to see what June Jones had to say at today's press conference.

While most people were off work Monday morning to prepare for BBQ's and cookouts on this national holiday, the SMU Mustangs were hard at work preparing for this weeks opponent Texas State.

After getting the 2008 season off on a rough note, losing to Rice 56-27 last Friday night on national television, first year head coach approached Monday's press conference in a positive upbeat approach.

"After watching the film there were a lot of good things we did against Rice," Jones said. "I liked the intensity of our players and no one gave up and quit."

The veteran head coach realizes that you can't give up five turnovers, three for touchdowns and expect to win a ballgame.

"There aren't many teams in the country you can beat when you do that," Jones said. "We gave them 28 points and we didn't take advantage of three chances that we could have easily scored on. That would have made it a whole different ballgame. You have to give Rice credit, they played a great game."

Jones stressed that he and his coaches must make sure that this young ball club continues to improve each and every day and every ball game.

"We aren't the type of team that can just show up and expect to win a game," Jones said. "We will have to be ready this weekend against Texas State, they have some good athletes. We better be ready to play, I'm sure they expect or think that they can come in here and get a win."

Jones will debut in his home opener as the Mustang's head coach Saturday night at 7 p.m. when SMU plays host to Division 1AA Texas State from San Marcos. The Bobcats won their first game last Saturday night 21-14 over NCAA Division 2 San Angelo State.

Jones discussed his thoughts on true freshman quarter Bo Levi Mitchell's performance against Rice.

"I was pleased with certain areas of his game," Jones said. "He wasn't nervous at all, that was a good thing in his first start. The mistakes he made were freshman type mistakes, nothing we can't get corrected."

Another area of concern for Jones was the number of dropped passes.

"If we just catch the football it could have been a different ballgame," Jones said. "We work on that phase of the game a lot. It will come."

According to Jones he expects a more run oriented team when they face Texas State this weekend.

"They threw the ball 21 times against San Angelo State," Jones said. "They will be a more balanced, run attack type team. Of course they could come in here and throw it 60, but we don't expect that."

Jones feels that until his young ball club gets more confidence and winning mentality that every game will be a battle.

"They have some athletes on this Bobcat team," Jones said. "It will be a knock down drag out. Hopefully we will make the plays both on offense and defense, enough to secure the win."

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