How did the defense play today?
“It started off good and ended even better. The coaches have been telling us all year to start fast and end fast and that’s what I did.”
Talk about the defense…
“The defensive line has come a long way. We have young starters inside and outside too. I feel like we did our job and did it well and feel like the defense as a whole did as well.”
Why did John Brantley struggle?
“I wouldn’t call John Brantley’s play today a struggle, I would call it (pause for a laugh)… not enough room. Me and Dominique Easley collapsed the pocket and that is one of our main goals. We forced offensive linemen into his face and he was forced to roll out. That is how our d-line plays and we play physical.”
Didn’t they ask you to dial it down?
“The defense doesn’t dial it down… the defense keeps pushing.”
Talk about the three of you Floyd, Easley, and Ronald Powell, playing together now as opposed to not playing much as freshmen?
“That was just us coming together and talking. After our first year we talked and wanted to be on that starting line, and playing together next to each other. so that’s what we did and got the job done. We weren’t really disappointed (about last year), we knew we could do better. We wanted to earn it and not just given to us.”
How good can you guys be?
“We can be one hell of a force if we really, really come together and get it done. We will be. We are going to practice hard and going to come out next year. We are going to do it the best way we can.”
Was last year a disappointment?
“So much was expected, but most of it wasn’t in our hands. Our play was in our hands, but us getting on the field wasn’t our call. We were young and the coaches wanted people with experience, so that wasn’t mostly our fault. Last year we felt we should have been out there more, so this year we wanted to change all that and I think we did.
“In any football player’s eyes they want to be on the field and play. We took it too heart and wanted to play more, so worked hard to play more.”
The difference between high school and college in your first year?
“I don’t think there is a big difference in speed. It picked up a little bit, but we get that over camp. There was no real adjustment, just everything you learned in high school is out the window and now you are in college.”
Muschamp talked about how good you guys can be when you learn the game more, what did he mean?
“I understand what he said, ‘We give you this playbook and you learn it. Now that you have learned this, now learn the game, learn what your opponent wants to do to you. Learn what every player on offense they will run in certain situations. Learn their backfield and learn what type of blocks are coming at you.’ That is what he meant by learning the game.”
“Once we get that down and there’s no more thinking and we know what’s coming and we are playing, we will be completely unstoppable. It is the one thing that isn’t (really) hurting us, and not even slowing down, but we are thinking a little too much. Once we learn the game completely, there is nothing else to it.”
How is that going to happen?
”Its film, look at the offensive linemen’s hands, look down the line and stuff you wouldn’t normally do, you do.”
What will be different with your young group this year?
“We got after it and do what we normally do, but there was no setback or drop off or nothing. We felt like we had an okay season, but we just wanted to do more as a unit. There was never any pressure, we came in highly rated and a lot of expectations, but we put it all aside and do what what we do best, which is play football.”
What is the biggest thing you have learned about Muschamp since his arrival?
“The biggest thing I learned about Coach Muschamp is that he isn’t afraid to have fun with us and laugh in meetings and be himself and let loosed with us. He isn’t serious all the time, but when it is time to get serious, he gets serious.”
What is Coach Quinn like?
“Coach Quinn… no drama. I love it. All of our coaches get after us when it is time to, but they just want to teach you and they will coach you hard.”
Are Quinn and Coach Young two peas in a pod?
“Two peas in a pod, you can say that. There isn’t a difference to me.”
Muschamp made fun of Easley coming off the field and said “he was just tired”, did you give him a hard time?
“We always give him a hard time. Him being my roommate, I give him a hard time all the time. He gives me a hard time, that’s just what we do.”
What did you know about Bryant Young before he arrived?
“I learned about him when he got here, that was about it. He doesn’t bring out the film, he doesn’t brag. I do know he was 13 years in the NFL and nine time pro-bowler, (pause for laugh) so he had to be okay.”