Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Tuesday Press Conference – Part 1


DSC_0257 Coach Mark Richt

Opening Statement…

We have a very big game this week. I don’t know how big a game can get, but this is big. We know that and our coaches know it, our players know it, I think the Dawg nation knows it. It’s big.

We have to get after it. We have to play with a lot of intensity and with a lot of discipline and challenge a very good Arkansas Razorback team, 12th-ranked team in the country. They are very well coached. They have a lot of returning starters on both sides of the ball. They are a very, very dangerous offensive football team, it’s very obvious that they are that.

They have probably the No. 1 pro prospect at quarterback of anybody in the nation in Ryan Mallett. They have three great receivers coming back. They were all sophomores last year, and I thought they were fantastic last year. They have four returning offensive linemen who are seniors. They are doing that running back by committee right now. Their tight end, D.J. Williams, is a fantastic player, a senior who is very versatile. That is going to be a challenge.

Defensively, they’ve taken a lot of grief from a year ago, but they’ve had a fantastic start as a group. I think they are one of the tops in the nation versus scoring. They have a bunch of young men who have something to prove in a Southeastern Conference game. Their special teams are dangerous, and it’s going to be a great challenge.

The bottom line is they are a team that believes they can challenge for the Western Division title, and have very good reason to believe that. It’s going to be a heck of a ballgame.

Our fans, we need you if you’re listening. We need you at this game. We need you to be extremely loud when they have the ball, because if we could just get one offensive lineman to jump offside’s one time, that might be the difference in a drive continuing or it being stopped. We need all the help we can get in that regard, and it’s going to take everybody to beat this team. They are a really fine team.

On Aaron Murray and the possibility of a high-scoring game:

We have to let him shoot a little bit more than we have lately.

Can Murray match Mallett?

I don’t know about that. Of course, Joe Cox had a heck of a game last year and no one would have predicted that, especially after we played Oklahoma State and didn’t have much offensive production that day. Then it kind of flooded. I don’t know what’s going to happen. We could predict shootouts and it becomes a real close game, a low-scoring game. It’s just so hard to tell. I know that when you play good teams, you tend to not have as much offense or not as many stats. It tends to make both teams look maybe not as good as they might have looked in their openers, but they do have the ability to be truly explosive on offense. I’m not sure we’ve proved that yet this year.

On Aaron Murray:

DSC_0143I think Aaron has really done well. Coach Bobo and I are kind of double-teaming him. We watch everything he does, and he knows that. We’ve tried to not strangle him and not let him do anything. We just basically want him to create some habits that will carry him throughout his entire career, the ball handling, the footwork. Something as simple as hit your spot and get up in the pocket Don’t hit the spot and then retreat a little more, then all of a sudden the edge pressure gets you. Don’t try to spin out and try to make plays. You have to move up in the pocket and then out.

We’re trying to teach him those things, and also if you do cross the line of scrimmage don’t feel like you have to take somebody on physically like you might have in high school and knock somebody back. It’s not that important for a quarterback to get a yard or two after contact. It’s more important for you to get what you can get and get out of bounds or get down and then come back and play another play.

It’s also not important that on every single snap that you have to throw and make some kind of miraculous play. On the other hand, we do say run this system the way we teach you, do your footwork the way you’re supposed to, progress the way you’re supposed to. But when it’s time to create, that will happen naturally and it has. He has been making plays by moving around in the pocket, looking for people downfield. He’s crossed the line of scrimmage and made plays. So he has the ability, there is no doubt about that.

The thing that you can’t simulate is playing the first game of your career in Sanford Stadium and then playing an away game in a Southeastern Conference venue. You just can’t simulate that, so you don’t know what’s going to happen to a guy. Watching his demeanor and watching him operate and listening to him talk in between series about what did you see and what didn’t you see, he’s very sharp. He’s very aware of what’s going on around him and I think he’s handled it well.

It gives us more confidence to allow him to have more plays where the onus is on him to make a play or make a good decision and make a good throw. We’re gaining confidence in Aaron Murray’s ability to really function well in this type of game.”

On allowing Aaron Murray to do more:

I didn’t know if it would be week three or not. If you give a guy too much too soon and then if he fails miserably in his own mind even, if he makes a mistake that costs you the game, sometimes for a brand new guy that’s hard to overcome, the pressure of that.

You talk about recruiting, can a guy hit his target? Can he make good decisions and I always say can he handle the pressure of the job? There is pressure to that job. So far he’s handled that pressure of the job very well. Sometimes that pressure could overwhelm a guy if he starts out real poorly and it’s hard to recover. It’s hard to lose the confidence and then build it back up. It’s better to kind of take it slow and gradually get to the point where you can handle it.

Is he ready for everything that can come down the pipe? Probably not. And will he make mistakes as we go? There is no doubt that he will. But I think he’ll be able to handle the fact that, ‘Hey I made a mistake. I’m going to be able to shake it off and let’s go play and do better.’ I think that’s really kind of where we are at with Aaron.

Right Tackle Josh Davis

On the magnitude of this weekends game:

DSC_0175We’re trying to avoid going 0-2 in the conference. I think that we’re going to practice well today and prepare well for it because we don’t want the same thing to happen this week that happened last week. We’re not trying to live in the past, but we’re going to build on the past. We’ll look at the mistakes that were made and we will build on those mistakes this week.

On the running game:

We’re going to run the ball and we’re going to do it very well. When we have an experienced offensive line, we should be able to run the ball. I think that last weekend was a good learning experience, but it’s not going to happen again.

Wide Receiver Kris Durham

On his play in the first two games of the season:

DSC_0230 The way that I have played so far is something that I’ve been proud of. But that said, I would much rather have zero stats and win the game. It’s not about me. It’s about the team. Stats aren’t something I’m focused on. I would rather play special teams or not even play and have us win the game than have 100 yards receiving and three touchdowns.

On the progression of Aaron Murray compared to former Georgia quarterback Matthew Stafford:

They’re very similar in terms of their preparation and their mentality. Both Aaron and Matthew stay in the film room. They’re both very much students of the game. They are different quarterbacks on the field, as Aaron is a little more mobile where as Matthew had a little more arm strength. But they both can read coverages and both know what defenses are going to give them and they make the right decisions.

No comments:

Post a Comment