What They Said

Texas State defeated Southern Miss 22-15 last Saturday and we've got sound offs from quarterback Tyler Arndt linebacker David Mayo and tight end Bradley Miller.

Quarterback Tyler Arndt: (interview by Reporter Drew Barbetta)

DB: How was practice Sunday?

TA: It was good. It felt good to come out here and we had a good night last night. We got the W, it wasn't pretty but it felt good. Now our practice is all Prairie View.

DB: How confident were you before the final drive?

TA: We struggled all night, I felt like something would go our way and things really went our way that last drive. Credit to the o-line. They did a really good job of letting me stay in the pocket and let Andy (Erickson) get to the sticks and get the first down.

DB: Did you feel like you had it going after the conversion?

TA: I think we did have a little momentum. We came back with 2 quick passes and hit 'em pretty good there. It was a good drive. It wasn't just me it was all 11 of us out there. That's what it takes to win.

DB: How'd it feel to pull the read option out on the last touchdown?

TA: It felt good. I saw grass, I took it and just thought just get in. We had to make the 2-point conversion, luckily we got it in there. (The read option) was a handoff all night.

DB: What are y'all preparing specifically for in the home opener?

TA: I haven't seen any film on them. I know they won their first game. We have to prepare like we did for Southern Miss. We won't have as long to prepare but we'll get it done.

DB: Anyone you think stepped up and helped in the fourth quarter?

TA: Each individual had their good plays in the last drive. It took all of us, that's pretty much it. It wasn't one person, it was all of us.

DB: Do you see your number of snaps increasing in the next game?

TA: Well I hope they do go up, that's coaches decision not mine. It'll come down to how hard we work each week, nothing's guaranteed out here. It'll come down to who practices the best and prepares, which quarterback takes the game plan the best they can.


Linebacker David Mayo, Sun Belt Defensive Player of the Week

CI: Have you ever had that good of a feeling in your career, getting the game-winning interception (2 total)?

DM: "Definitely not and definitely not in division I football. That's what we came out to do. We came out to get 3 takeaways at least. A defense as a whole, we stopped the run, played great on 3rd and 4th down - did good.

CI: Did the defense exceed their own expectations?

DM: "We're one game in but fall camp went really well, the defense had some new guys come in and helped us out. We're running the defense a little differently. After last year we're a lot more hungry as a defense so I think that helps us a lot."

CI: Going back and looking at the film from Southern Miss, what were your impressions of how the defense executed?

DM: We did good. We had minimal missed assignments, which is big. We had around 4% missed assignments which is hitting our goal. We strive for 6% or less and that's one of the things that stood out to me.

CI: Where were you at last year at this time, as far as percentage of missed assignments, how much improvement has there been?

DM: Very much improved. I'm not sure of the number exactly but last year at this time we had a lot of things to fix, even though it was a big win for us. This year, as a defense, we had a lot less things to fix this week.


Tight end Bradley Miller

CI: How would you evaluate the offensive performance from last week?

BM: We had a lot of mistakes that we have to correct. We beat ourselves and had missed assignments here or there. Execution is one of our biggest points of interest this week. But when all the chips were on the line, we got the job done and we got a score. It's a good win but we have to put it behind us and focus on Prairie View this week.

CI: Where did that last drive come from? After struggling all game, how did you do it?

BM: We executed. We finally said enough is enough and we are going to have to show what were made of, where are guts are at. That's what we had to do for our team.

CI: Fran says the blocking has to improve, how much have you heard that preached already?

BM: That's the first thing our tight ends coach told us. Our technique was terrible. We're going to have some individual periods when we'll be working on blocking.

CI: How much impact did the blocking had on the running game? No one gave up any sacks.

BM: I think they tried more to contain us rather than blitz 8 or 9 guys. We have a stable full of backs. People are going to try to contain us instead of taking the gamble.

CI: Coach said he didn't want to take too many chances on offense because the defense was playing so well. Was that the original gameplan?

BM: We go into the game with the mindset that no matter who lines up against us, we're going to execute and do our best to drive the ball down the field. Coach Fran says it all the time, if the defense stalls out the offense has to step up (and vice versa). Defense held their end of the bargain the other night and they deserve a big amount of credit for this victory.

CI: 14-3 halftime lead and it starts to slowly slip away. Flash backs start to happen to last season. What changed in that fourth quarter?

BM: Starting in January, Coach Fran had us up here at 6 in the morning, freezing cold, says he wants to change the culture. We did a bunch of team-building stuff, getting our minds ready for the season. He told us it was going to be a 4-quarter game and what do you know, we need a drive to win in the fourth quarter. The offense showed their mental toughness and we've started to change the culture. Fran was pretty proud of us but we still have a lot of work to do this week.

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