“The weather kept us in two days in a row. Obviously we need that work, especially in the kicking game. I think it’s good to play in the conditions that you’re going to play. One of the things we’ve been trying to get our players to sort of grasp is, if you respect your talent in anything that you do, then you have an obligation to yourself to be the best you can be. That’s what creates positive consequences for you. Anything short of that, you’re really facing a lot of regret, not only in football but also in life. This is something that I think every individual should be very interested in doing.
“We’re looking forward to a great home game, a great atmosphere this week. They’re going to try to go fast, they’re going to try to go no-huddle. I think noise can be disruptive to them. I’d like to see our fans get into this game a little bit and help our team out a little bit.
“We’re taking part in the extra yard for teachers this week along with the College Football Playoff. I don’t know how you feel about teachers but I have a tremendous amount of respect for teachers, what they do to help people develop and grow. I know I could tell you my first grade, second grade, third grade, fourth grade, fifth grade, I could tell you every teacher I ever had when I was a kid growing up, because they all had some kind of significant impact on my development as a person and I certainly have appreciation for the time they invested in me, helping me graduate from college and have an opportunity to do what I love to do. We don’t have any new injuries to report. We’re just trying to get ready to improve and play a better game this week.”
In the NFL people talk about building around franchise quarterbacks. Can you do that in college or is there not enough time?
“My philosophy in recruiting is that you recruit the best possible players that you can at every position and try to focus on what a player can do and not what he can’t do. If that guy has special talents in some areas, I think those things are going to be beneficial to our team and his contribution to the team in the future. Once you get those guys, you sort of do what they can do. You can go through all the quarterbacks that we’ve had since we’ve been here. If you just take the last three years, they’re all relatively different. We build what we have around them based on what they can do. But they all had good enough talent in what they could do that we had a pretty productive offense and scored a lot of points. So we’ve done the same thing with Jalen, and hopefully he’ll continue to improve in some of the areas that will help him be more complete but also, we’ll continue to take advantage of the things he does well.”
What have you thought of Raekwon Davis in the last two weeks?
“I think Raekwon is a guy that, it’s really important to him to be a good player. He works really hard, he gives great effort. Like all young players, I think that they don’t realize all the time the importance of paying attention to detail, understanding the situation, not just going 100 miles an hour but playing a draw set or playing a screen set a little bit different. I think those are the things that good players learn how to do and play fast and play hard and be aggressive but they still recognize things quickly. I think that’s the key to developing young players. I think in Raekwon’s case, as well as all the other young players that we have play on our team. That’s what knowledge and experience does for you, so hopefully as he gets that he’ll continue to even improve and play better. But we’ve been pleased with his performance to this point.”
How have you seen JK Scott’s preparation translate to his consistency on the field?
“I think it’s important that… You’ve heard me say this 100 times before, I used to make the specialists be like everybody else on the team, but I don’t think they really are. I think they’re training to do something a little bit different, something they’re going to have to do four, five, six times in a game, not 70 times in a game like a defensive tackle or a cornerback or quarterback or a wide receiver. So I think that takes a little bit different type of training. I think that every guy has to develop confidence in his training. So if a guy believes in his routine, if he believes in the things that he does throughout the course of the week that are going to help him psychologically and physically, be able to deliver the five or six times that he has to on Saturday, then we’re very supportive of a guy doing that. JK is a tireless worker. It’s really important to him to do well. If we have any issue with him in terms of his routine, it’s making sure that he doesn’t do too much and that he stays in his routine and can maintain a level of consistency because of it.”
Will Lester Cotton be able to play on Saturday?
“He practiced today. He practiced yesterday. Most of the time when guys practice, they’re able to play We have every thought that he will play in the game.”
We’ve heard about teams playing to win or not to lose. Do you buy into that? Do you ever prepare like that?
“What we prepare for is for every guy to play to the best of his ability and to dominate the competition and dominate his box. If we can get every guy to do that, then I can live with the result. So I know how important it is for everybody out there, externally, for us to win the game. For me as a coach, if we can get every player to play at a very high standard and high level in terms of his effort, his toughness, his discipline, his ability to execute, we’ll get the result that we want, and that’s what we try to stay focused on. I have seen players take the psychological disposition where they get in situations… That’s why you say there’s no scoreboard. All of a sudden you get ahead or behind in the game and you let that affect how you play one way or the other. So we want to be aggressive at all times. We want to try to dominate our box. There are certain situations in the game where you need to play smart so that you can win the game, whether it’s take the air out of the ball and get first downs on offense so the other team doesn’t get another chance to score, or whether you have to stop them in 2-minute on defense. I know that we all play to win, but what we focus on here is ‘What do you have to do to win?’ Let’s focus on those things. What do you have to do to dominate, to be the best player you can be? It’s a little different disposition. Like all folks out there, I know how results oriented everybody is, but our success usually comes from following the process so they have a better chance to put themselves in a position to get a positive consequence.”
Josh Jacobs has been at practice. Expect him to play?
“I don’t know. He’s been practicing.”
Is there a reason why the three freshmen receivers tend to play in a package?
“Well, it’s not really a package. It’s just trying to play guys, trying to get them experience. Those guys are capable of playing and doing a job. It just helps our other guys rest. There’s no real plan that those three guys are playing in a package, or we do anything different in the game or anything like that.”
You said you decided in advance to play Tua in the second quarter. Is there a plan this week?
“We haven’t decided how we’re going to play the guys and I wouldn’t tell you if I did. I don’t mind you asking the question but I don’t need to answer it. But I will call Colorado State and tell them exactly what I want to do as soon as we get out of here. I know Mike Bobo, his dad lives up by my house in Lake Burton. So I’ll call them up and tell them who we’re playing, when, how long, when we’re putting them in, we’ll tell them the whole thing. Is that all right, is that alright with you?”
That’s great, coach.
“So you can call him and find out.”
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