Lockerroom talk; Injury report

AUBURN -- The score was lopsided, but the lockerroom chatter about Washington State, both from WSU coaches and Auburn players, was most uplifting: These Cougars are fighters. Plus, Gary Rogers and Alex Brink talk about the night behind center in a wide-ranging series of quotes from people on all sides of the field. Plus, the medical report from Washington State.

Head coach Bill Doba:

On his team's effort:
"You are never happy with a loss, but I thought our kids battled hard. Our defense was put in some bad situations, but they never quit." On Auburn's fake punt:
"We got the three-and-out, had good momentum and they ran the trick punt on us. That really hurt, but I think we learned from it."

On Kenny Irons:
"He is as good as I have seen, and he was good tonight. There were a lot of times I thought we had him, but he ran right through our arms. We didn't tackle very well. What he does so well is that he gets that flow going straight up the field and he has such great vision."

Defensive coordinator Robb Akey:

"We tried a 3-4 package in the second half. We wanted to give them something else to look at blocking-scheme wise. We were in good shape there for a few minutes. We had three or four four-and-outs and then the faked the punt. They are a damn good football team, but we are capable of playing better than we did."

Quarterback Gary Rogers:

"They said I was going in. I was stoked about it. I felt like I was really prepared coming in. I thought the coaches did a good job preparing me, and I had a great opportunity tonight. I just went in and tried my best to do my thing. I feel like I am ready to play, and when I get the opportunity, I want to make the best of it."

On playing in Jordan-Hare:
"It was a cool atmosphere. I played at USC last year but this atmosphere was a little bit different. I felt really calm, though, going into the game. It felt good."

On coming out of the game:
"I wanted to stay in and keep going. Obviously I wanted to stay in the game, but I respect the coaches' decision."

Quarterback Alex Brink:

"We were fighting an uphill battle from the beginning. We got off to a slow start. With the No. 4 team in the country, you can't get off to a slow start. We didn't quite execute the way we needed to. Their defensive ends are fast. Their linebackers are fast. At times we took advantage of it and had them on their toes. For the most part, they had us on our heels … We didn't start fast. We were fighting uphill against a really good football team. The early pressure got us off-balance. We knew they were going to be fast.:

On Gary Rogers' third quarter series:
"He came in and took advantage of a great opportunity. We caught them in a spread, and he came in and made some great throws. I was really happy for him."

Auburn head coach Tommy Tuberville:

"They are a very good football team, and they are well-coached. We really played well above the expectations we wished for."

On the fake punt:
"The fake punt is something that we have been working on. It just set up for us, and we kept watching. We called it even though it was around the 20-yard line. The momentum was switching. We had an opportunity to check out of it if we wanted to. It went perfect. It was a little trap play where we block the guard. It really got us out of the hole. Even though we missed the field goal, it switched the end of the field for us."

Auburn defensive end Quentin Groves:

On Washington State:
"They just don't quit. They can score points. They have a great offensive attack, and, if you let them, they can be very explosive. They can throw the ball all over the field."

Auburn safety Aairon Savage:

On Washington State's offense: "They have a great passing attack, and they have the ability to run extremely well using two different backs."


THE MEDICAL REPORT from Washington State was not updated today, as the players were given Sunday off, a day they normally run, because of the team's late arrival -- appx 5:15 a.m. this morning. The next full injury report will be released by Washington State on Tuesday, after players report to the training room Monday and Tuesday.

Long snapper Tony Thompson suffered a concussion early in the third quarter on the kickoff return team. Replacement Pete Hill had some trouble but Darryl Blunt was able to get his kicks off. Two Cougars suffered nose lacerations.

Auburn injury report from Washington State Sports Information
DeMaundray Woolridge – thigh bruise
Aaron Johnson – hip bruise
Don Turner – hip bruise
Michael Willis – shoulder
Markus Dawes – ankle
Tony Thompson – concussion
Steve Dildine – Nose laceration
Mkristo Bruce – Nose laceration

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