Countdown to Kickoff
Alabama Football vs. Arkansas Postgame Quotes



Oct. 19, 2013

Recap |  Final Stats |  Notes |  Photo Gallery 

Alabama Head Coach Nick Saban

Opening statement:

"I was really proud of the way our guys came out and competed and played in this game. We're trying to set a high standard for how we play. We came out right off the bat offensively and had a really good first drive and scored the first couple of times we had the ball and got them stopped a couple of times on defense. I was really pleased with the way we competed in the game.

"Arkansas's players played with a lot of toughness, and it's a physical game. We knew it would be one of the most physical games we've played all year. They've run the ball pretty effectively on everybody, and they certainly gave us some problems when it came to that as well.

"We had a couple of guys that got injured out there. Vinnie [Sunseri] has a knee injury, and he'll get an MRI tomorrow. We'll see what the verdict is, but it could be serious. Bradley Sylve has a high ankle sprain, and he'll be day-to-day. We don't know if he'll be able to play next week at this point in time. Altee [Tenpenny] has turf toe/sprained toe and was not able to come back in the game today. He's kind of in the same category that Bradley is.

"I really thought the offensive line did a good job of protecting the quarterback. We made some explosive plays in the passing game. We were able to run the ball, and we had pretty good balance out there. I'm really pleased with the progress that we made.

"I think it's important that our team continue to focus on improving. I still don't think we played our best game. I think we have to continue to improve. It's great that we got to play a lot of players out there tonight. We certainly need for those guys to get some experience because we're going to need some depth. Obviously, as you lose players, other guys have to step up and play. We had to do a lot of shuffling in the secondary tonight to get guys in a position that they really haven't played that much. I thought they all did a pretty good job of adjusting and adapting in the game."

#61 Anthony Steen, Offensive Line

On the progression of this team:

"Looking at this game and at previous games, I like where we are heading right now, and I hope to keep it up."

On the play of the offensive line and the improvement as a line:

"I think it's just reps, and we had a lot of really young guys that didn't really have a lot of starts under their belts. The more games we have played, the better everybody felt together, and I think we are getting along just fine right now."

#26 Landon Collins, Defensive Back

On the amount of depth on defense:

"We have a lot of depth in our defense and a lot of kids that are ready to step up, and they're hungry to play the positions they got offered to and when the doors open, they take it in stride.

On C.J. Mosley and his vocal leadership:

"He's very vocal. He touches base with us and has us looking at things that open our eyes to the process of the game and doing everything right, and that's a great leader for our defense and for our team."

Arkansas Head Coach Bret Bielema

Opening statement:

"Obviously this is getting a little old. Nothing that we did out there can give us any indication that the things that we need to do are that far away. It's a long way to go. We are at a point where we have to take a look at ourselves offensively, defensively, and special teams, all the things we are asking our kids to do. We just can't have one missed tackle turn into a touchdown. That happened on three different occasions today, and obviously there is a fundamental breakdown that has to be corrected.

"Offensively, we had planned to come in and run the football. We just weren't able to do that.

"Alabama is a very good football team. They are very strong and deep, and you give them obviously a great advantage. Their kids played on time, on rhythm.

"Ball security was, again, an issue for us today. To start the second half it wasn't even anything they did. It was just loose ball security on our account.

"What we have to do as coaches is begin to move forward with the guys that are going to execute what we are asking them to do. If a guy repeatedly puts a ball on the ground, if we are dropping passes, we just have to move on. It's to the point where you have to understand where we are going with the guys that survive this; the guys that move forward with us will be rewarded. I don't know if it is going to come the next game or if it will be a month from now, or a year from now, but it's going to take a leap of faith.

"You know we had a fundamental breakdown in our field goal protection. The very first time we tried to go at it we get a field goal blocked. We've been pretty good at that. It was directly affected because on Friday I have to leave a guy at home because he is five minutes late to a special teams meeting. This involves a guy who is a starter on that unit. We had to adjust three people on Friday, and we just can't get anywhere with that, so until our guys learn to do all of that before we even get on the plane we really don't have a good chance."

On missed tackles allowing touchdowns:

"The part that got frustrating was that there was a play, where the D-end strikes their back and the back kind of bounced off. Then the corner fell flat on his face and missed the tackle and the result is a touchdown."

On back to back blowout losses:

"What I've repeatedly said to our guys is that they have to care. They have to have a certain amount of respect for themselves first, before we can even begin to carry it forward."

#91 Darius Philon, Defensive Tackle

On playing at Alabama:

We have to get better. We have to keep focus on what we have to do for the next opponent."

#42 Chris Smith, Defensive End

On Arkansas struggling with their tackling:

"Tackling was a big thing.  Alabama ran the ball well. Give credit to them,  they're the number one team in the country.  You can't make too many mistakes because they'll capitalize on them.  I feel like that was the main thing tonight."

#32 Jonathan Williams, Running back

On how to stay motivated after the previous outcomes:

"You've got to look towards the future. It's tough right now but we've got to keep working towards the future."

On what has been toughest for Arkansas:

"We've just got to sustain drives. We've moved the ball every now and then,  but we can't sustain and that is something that we need to make an emphasis."