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Tide Players Talk about Georgia Game



Sept. 22, 2008

Tide Players Talk about Georgia Game

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - The University of Alabama football team met with the media on Monday to preview the Crimson Tide's game at No. 3 Georgia this Saturday night in Athens.  The game will be televised by ESPN with kickoff set for 6:45 p.m. (CDT).  The following are comments from senior quarterback John Parker Wilson, junior running back Glen Coffee, junior left tackle Andre Smith, junior cornerback and return specialist Javier Arenas and senior free safety Rashad Johnson.

Senior quarterback John Parker Wilson:

On Georgia:
"I think they are a good team, just like many other teams that we are going to play.  They are obviously ranked high and we are just going to take it like another week.  We aren't going to look at it like the biggest game on our schedule because it's just the next game we have."

On Alabama's passing game:
"We ran 20 plays the first half.  We didn't need to throw the ball.  We weren't going to throw it when we were running the ball like we were.  We averaged 10 yards a rush.  There is no need to throw it."

On Kareem Jackson:
"He's got great feet. He makes really good reads on the ball and uses his hands well.  He doesn't leave a lot of space between him and the defender, if you are going to make a pass on him it's going to be a tight pass every time."

On Georgia game last year:
"I think we hit a big play on the sideline to Keith (Brown).  We were backed up to our end zone.  We hit a big play and it just kind of got it going.  I haven't really watched the film from last year that much; I'll get a chance to do that this week.  Definitely some things stick out about what they did last year and that will be in the back of my mind this year."

Junior running back Glen Coffee:

On getting a long run:
"It felt good.  Just to be able to run down the field and have people chasing you is a good feeling.  It's something I wanted to work on this season.  I tried to improve in this area."

On feeling faster this season:
"I don't necessarily feel faster.  It's been a while since I broke one like that so it's been in the back of my head.  It's just a mentality I guess; it's a different mentality than last year.  It's an area that I needed to bring to the field.  I know how fast I am but I felt like I wasn't playing it on the field.  I just decided to try to make that happen."

On losing speed after his knee injury:
"I had lost some speed after the knee and the sports hernia.  I feel like I've gotten most of it back.  Sometimes I feel like I can't bend my knees the way I want to but for the most part I got it back."

Junior left tackle Andre Smith:

On offensive line's ability to open up holes for running backs against Arkansas:
"That's how it fell.  Glen (Coffee), Mark Ingram, Roy Upchurch, Terry Grant, they all throughout the week did an outstanding job as far as preparation.  They just really did their job to the best of their ability."

On being named SEC lineman of the week:
"I think we played really well as an offensive unit, on both sides of the ball really.  The defense did an outstanding job.  Offensive line, we prepared the entire week.  Coach Pendry stressed on our footwork and correct technique and it showed in the game."

On game against Georgia last year:
"It was a hard loss but it was last year.  This year is a new year.  I'm really looking forward to the game this year.  It was really physical.  Last year we could have done some things different in terms of preparing better.  We could have been more productive on offense than we were."

Junior corner back and return specialist Javier Arenas:

On Georgia's offense:
"I know they like to make big plays.  They are known for making big plays.  That's what makes them the number three team in the country.  They have great athletes at the running back position, quarterback position, wide receiver position.  It is going to be a great match up."

Senior free safety Rashad Johnson:

On not getting an interception:
"It's good to see those guys going out there and making plays.  Anything that is helping us to win games, it's positive.  As long as we are winning I'm good.  When the opportunity comes, I'm definitely going to go up and try to make a play.  When I do get it, it will be exciting but I've been there before.  As long as we keep winning games, that's irrelevant.  You want to catch interceptions and all that but if you aren't getting a chance to do it and you are winning games, then that's all that matters."

On staying focused on the field:
"I'm just trying to do my job.  If it's in the middle of the field or coming in the box, or if it's getting the corner lined up. I'm just trying to do my job and not focus on anything else.  The opportunity is going to come; there is still a lot of ball left.  We've only played four games.  I'm pretty sure there will be many opportunities for interceptions and things like that.  It's more important to focus on getting the win.  If you get an interception and lose the game, it's useless."

On Georgia quarterback Matthew Stafford:
"He does a great job of reading defenses.  Before he even snaps the ball, he knows what coverage you are in, and where he is going with the ball.  It's definitely important for us to try and disguise what we are doing and try to show him a different look so we can try to get him off guard."