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Quotes as Clemson and Ohio St. arrive in Miami for Orange Bowl


  by - Senior Writer - Sunday, December 29, 2013 5:52 PM
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MIAMI – Clemson and Ohio St. both arrived in Miami Sunday afternoon in preparation for Friday’s Discover Orange Bowl.

The following is an edited transcript of the arrival press conferences.

Dabo SwinneyDabo Swinney
Head Coach
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On what Clemson wants to accomplish

“A win, that’s what we hope to get accomplished. We’re excited an honored to get back to the Discover Orange Bowl. This is a bowl that every player and college coach wants to be a part of. It’s just a great to finally get here, but our goal is to win the game and have a little bit better performance than the last time we came down here.”

On matchup

“It’s a great match up. Ohio State is a great team, we think we’re a great team and both teams were two of the teams that had a shot to get to Pasadena, but came up a little short from that aspect. But I know both teams want to finish with a win and carry that momentum into next year.”

On Tajh BoydTajh Boyd
RS Sr. Quarterback
#10 6-1, 225
Hampton, VA

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vs Braxton Miller

“That’s just kind of a natural thing when you have two great quarterbacks that have accomplished so much in Tajh and Braxton. That’s a good place to start when talking about this game because those two guys no matter how they play will have a major impact on this game.”

On if game will be a shootout

“Who knows, we just want one more [point] than they’ve got. It’s been a long time since we’ve played since November 30th, so that’s a long time. I hope that we play great defense and the defense is the difference in the game.”

Chandler CatanzaroChandler Catanzaro
Gr. Punter / Kicker
#39 6-2, 195
Greenville, SC

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On senior class

“Hoping to lead these guys to another victory and send the season off on a high note.”

On his performance in a close game

“You got to nail it. You have to think that way. I’ve been visualizing a game winner already in this game or a big kick. I’m ready for it if it comes my way.”

Pressure of playing in a BCS bowl game

“You can’t really think about the outside circumstances. You have to focus on what the process is, what you’re doing, your preparation. All the butterflies kind of go away when you step out on the game field. We just have to prepare with purpose this week and we’ll be ready to go.”

n if game will help with NFL recruitment

“I think whenever you step foot on that game field you have to be ready to produce. It’s definitely an audition for sure. Every game is an audition, every kicks an audition. I’m going to go out there and trust in the process, trust in my preparation, and produce whenever they need me.”

On South Florida weather

“It feels great to me. I have to get used to it a little bit. But it’s like 20 to 25 degrees warmer now. It was 40 degrees when we left. We’re just lucky to be here, it’s an honor to be in this bowl game. We’re ready to have fun, but the biggest thing is to win the ball game, so we’ll do our best to do that.”

Sammy WatkinsSammy Watkins
Jr. Wide Receiver
#2 6-1, 205
Fort Myers, FL

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On playing in Orange Bowl

“I’m excited for this team and this organization to regroup ourselves and have another opportunity to showcase Clemson. It’s going to be a great game and a great win for whoever wins this game.”

On facing Ohio State

“[We have to] take care of the ball and manage the offense. They have the same type of offense , score fast. We have to control the ball and make big plays.”

On if game will be a shootout

“With this team I don’t want to get in a shootout, they have the same type of offense. I want our defense to step up and play a big game for us, if they do that we’ll probably win the game. But both sides of the team have to execute and we’ll play like we practice all week.”

On recognition

“It’s very important to set the tempo of the offense and make the big plays early. For me it’s definitely an honor to play in the Orange Bowl against Ohio State who was two plays away from a national championship. It’s important to go out there and have fun but make it known it’s going to be a good game.”

On cornerbacks covering him

“I think I’m the best receiver in the nation and I think cornerbacks should have their time chance. Overall I think I can’t be guarded, that’s just my mindset. But it’s definitely fun going against great cornerbacks.”

On leaving for NFL

“I don’t know yet, I have to talk it over with the coaches. There will definitely be a plan in place. I don’t want this to be about me and so after the bowl game I’ll definitely let them know.”

Tajh Boyd

On being on a “a big stage” (the Discover Orange Bowl)

“I’m excited about this match up. Obviously, we want to play in every big game that we possibly can, so this just sets up another opportunity for us to go out there and show the country what we can do. Big stage, big venue, beautiful city, we’re excited about it. [Ohio State is a] great team we’re going to play against and we get a chance to go out there and just lay it all out on the line.”

On Braxton Miller

“I’m excited. Me and Braxton have a great relationship. I’ve known him for a couple of years now and, obviously, he’s one of the most explosive players in the country, regardless of position. So, it’s going to be a challenge for us as a whole. We have to rally together. There will be ups and down throughout the game...I’m excited for it.”

On Ohio State

“Their athletic group is very physical. That’s just the style of football that they play. They are very much downhill in the way that they compete and the way that their mentality is. We have to run the ball effectively, we have to be able to throw the ball effectively, so, it just comes down to executing your game plan and just focusing on the details of the game.”

Reflecting on his college career

“It’s special [the game]. Just my time and looking at it from an accumulation standpoint, it’s just been a great career. But again, you’re only really remembered by your last game. So, when we go out here we want to make the most of it. Some people look at it as a legacy game, some people look at it in other regards, but I just want to go out there and lay it on the field. When I come out of this game there needs to be no regrets and nobody questioning my toughness and my competitiveness.”

Spencer ShueySpencer Shuey
Gr. Linebacker
#33 6-3, 230
Charlotte, NC

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On what he expects to see out of Ohio State

“I definitely think we’ll see a team that is disappointed in their last performance and definitely trying to prove something. They’re an extremely tough team. They’ve lost one game in the last two years and that’s no fluke. They definitely have the talent and definitely have the coaches and the ability to be in the National Championship and it came down to the last game, the reason they’re not, and we’re definitely looking forward to being able to have a shot against them.”

On Braxton Miller

“Their entire offense is extremely good. They’ve got a great offensive line. Braxton, the quarterback, is unbelievably fast and definitely going to be a tough guy to contain. It’s definitely going to take a team effort. “

On how he will separate business from the fun

“We all realize that it’s a business trip. We’re definitely going to have a lot of fun and enjoy the hotel and enjoy the facilities and the different events they put on for us, but I think the maturity level on our team has showed that we know it’s a business trip and we’re definitely going to treat it as such.”

OHIO ST. QUOTES

b>Ohio State- Head Coach-Urban Meyer

On trip

“It was a good trip down. We’re ready to go. We’ll have practice today to get used to the humidity.”

On sophomore defensive lineman Noah Spence

“Noah didn’t fly down with us. He’s working through some personal issues at home. I hope [he will be here].”

On preparation to come

“I think the fact that we’re playing Clemson in a BCS bowl game wakes up everybody up real fast. You worry as a coach that fundamentally that you’re not in shape and fundamentally behind a little bit. That’s what we worked on yesterday and I’m going to run them pretty good today and get Christmas out of them.”

On both teams offensive and defensive matchups

“Our defense the last two games didn’t play the way we were expected to play, but during the year we played pretty good. Clemson’s defense other than a couple of games played not good but very good. I think you see two highly ranked offenses and some personnel that’s going to be moving on to the next level on both offenses too and that’s what fans expect. I’m not sure that’s what they will see.”

Ryan Shazier-Junior- LB

On playing in Orange Bowl game

“It’s really big for us right now because it’s a championship series bowl game. It’s a real big bowl game. We’re going to come in here and try to do what we can do for the Big Ten and for Ohio State and try to get this ‘W’.”

On bouncing back from Michigan State loss

“We’re not thinking about what happened in the past we’re just focusing on Clemson right now and trying to get this ‘W’. It helps me out a lot because I’m home.”

On being back in South Florida

“It’s really cool because I’ll know I’m going to have family here. Just being back in this atmosphere really means a lot.”

On changes on defense

“I think we’re going to a lot better job for this game coming up. We’ve been really on the fundamentals and everything we have to do and the little things that we were messing up on-communication type things. So we’re just going to try get everything together and we’re focused on that.”

On Clemson

“I feel like we’ll be up for the challenge, but they have a lot of speed and a lot of playmakers. They hurry the ball and try to get guys out of position and out of rhythm. So we just have to try to slow the game down and play at our pace.”


Braxton Miller - Junior - QB

On what he did during the flight

"I was just sleep the whole time. It was kind of too early for that plane ride. I just took my time and went to sleep on the airplane, but when I get to the hotel later on, I'll probably watch a little bit of film."

On Tajh Boyd

"I love competition. It makes me bring my game up a level. It brings competition to all the teammates. When they play a little bit harder, I like it. It's going to big a big game."

On the weather

“It’s good…you can come out here with some shorts and a short sleeve shirt. Coming from Ohio, it's like 40 degrees outside [and] raining."

b>On whether he has a point to prove in this game

"[We] just have to be aggressive [and] throw the ball around a little bit, let the guys make a few more plays [and] make sure we score a lot of points."

On his and the seniors' desire to perform well on Friday

"You've got to go out there and play strong and be aggressive out there. [We have to]Just follow the game plan, make a lot of plays, keep our defense off the field, score a lot of points. [We] need to leave the field with no doubts and let the seniors go out with a W."

On his decision to go to the NFL

"My main focus is really on the team right now, especially on the game plan. I've been watching a lot of film - that's pretty much my main focus. To make sure we go out there strong in preparedness. But [once we] leave the field with no doubt I'll make my decision after I'm done."

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