Dec. 27, 2008
NEW ORLEANS, La. - The Alabama football team arrived in New Orleans on Saturday and quickly returned to the practice field to continue its preparations for sixth-ranked Utah. The Crimson Tide worked for 90 minutes in shells inside the New Orleans Saints indoor practice facility.
John Parker Wilson, QB
On arriving in New Orleans
"It is great to finally be in New Orleans. There is a lot of great tradition with Alabama and the Sugar Bowl and it is exciting to be a part of that. We are going to get on the practice field this week and get ready to play an outstanding Utah team that presents us with a lot of challenges."
On today's practice
I know the team is glad to get back out there on the practice field and get a little work in. We came out with a lot of energy and practiced hard as we continued to get the game plan in for Utah. The (New Orleans) Saints have a tremendous practice facility and it was great to be able to work out in an NFL facility."
Antoine Caldwell, C
On the focus for the Sugar Bowl
"We are looking forward to the week in New Orleans and are very happy to be here. But first and foremost, we are here to win a football game and our preparations have to be our priority. You have to balance everything this week just like you do normally.
On finishing his career in the Sugar Bowl
"It is exciting to spend my last week as an Alabama football player in a BCS game. My four years at the University of Alabama have been an unbelievable experience and the Sugar Bowl is a great finish to my career. This team has worked hard all season, and we have a chance to finish this year the right way."
Rashad Johnson, FS
On the accomplishments of this team and rebounding from a loss in the SEC Championship Game
"This team has been able to accomplish a lot this season. We have kind of turned the program around this year and the Sugar Bowl is a great chance to finish the season on a positive note. Great teams are able to rebound from tough losses, and we want to be able to show that we are a great team. For us to play to the best of our ability on January 2, we have to come in here and work hard the entire week and get totally prepared for and excellent Utah team."
On what you are looking forward to this week outside of practice
"It's just fun to be around all of my teammates for the week, hanging out in the player hospitality room in the hotel. The food is great and we have some team dinners at some of the best restaurants on the schedule. I'm also looking forward to going to the Saints game tomorrow and maybe the Hornets game on Tuesday."