Postgame Press Conference Quotes


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CLEMSON HEAD COACH TOMMY BOWDEN

“Offensively, we just shot ourselves in the foot. You can’t turn the ball over and win any games, against Texas A&M or anyone else. We turned the ball over on offense, didn’t put ourselves in position on defense, and didn’t force any turnovers. We didn’t create anything to change the momentum, offensively or defensively. This is the worst we’ve looked on both sides of the ball. We have a tough schedule, the second toughest in the nation. You have to learn to deal with that kind of schedule and have success. I think we played pretty hard. It looked like we had a lot of missed tackles late in the game. Until I look at the tape, I won’t know if it was technique or if we just gave up on the blocking. They made us execute the passing game and we did not. We ran it fairly good at times. We knew (Reggie McNeal) was fast. They gave us some isolated type formations with no backs to try and man up and isolate him. We couldn’t tackle the kid. Whether it was poor tackling, scheme, or whether it was him, I’ll have to look at the tape to determine. You don’t mind passing stats if you’re shutting the running game down and that’s the only way they’re moving the ball. When they’re throwing the ball and running the ball, that’s not very good.”


CLEMSON QUARTERBACK CHARLIE WHITEHURST


“They definitely blitzed us. We expected that. We’d played two games now and they were going to scheme us. I think I had four turnovers by myself and they didn’t have any. That was definitely huge. I don’t think we ever really got it going. We had the plays to make and just didn’t make them. I give credit to Texas A&M, but we didn’t do anything. We could have at least made it a game if we had shown up. Every game is going to be tough, but offensively we haven’t shown up yet. Until that happens, I’m not as concerned with the opponent as I am our team. We didn’t give up, we just didn’t make plays. I think that’s the bottom line. First and foremost, if I can play to the best of my ability this stuff doesn’t happen. We just had guys not show up and I’m probably number one on that list.”

TEXAS A&M DEFENSIVE BACK ERIK MAYES


"We have to play good to prove the Wyoming thing was not a fluke. If we didn't play good everybody was like it's Wyoming. We felt in practice we had to practice twice was hard, come out and -- we all bet we’d be ready to get this thing going in the right direction.


TEXAS A&M DEFENSIVE BACK BYRON JONES

"(The Utah game is) Still in my mind, but we feel like that team was not us and we came out tonight to let everybody know we are a better team. The team y'all saw against Utah that wasn’t us. It’s fresh on our mind, but we came out to prove a point that this is a better football team."


TEXAS A&M RUNNING BACK COURTNEY LEWIS


"Well, last week when I was at home watching the game I had a little urge to come back out and make a statement that -- that I'm still here; still have my running ability no matter what happens. I had a little adversity at first, but I came back strong and dealt with it.


(On running the option) I guess the first game they played it so well. We tried to run it against Utah but we were unsuccessful then. But it depends on the schemes they give us.


(on health) I guess I'm a hundred percent. I finished the game today. So -- yeah it was bothering me at first but after the game went by -- felt more confident being on it and making my cuts and doing the second quarter I completely forgot about it. Not bothering me."


TEXAS A&M QUARTERBACK REGGIE MCNEAL

(On the 99-yard drive) "We started pounding on them and we could tell they were getting worn down so we just continued to execute our offense and just played together. (backed up at the 1 in the third) I just got to stay calm. You can't get over excited with yourself just because you’re throwing the ball, but Coach Fran’s got a lot of faith and confidence in us. Hold up, get the ball out on the perimeter to our receivers.


(Clemson looking for you or Courtney) Well, that could have possibly been the case but I mean, with me and Courtney back there just -- just like one two punch except you can't just key on one of us and -- I mean, you get out there and most people don't have enough speed to get out on the edges because Courtney’s got speed. So I mean teams try to account for one or the other and end up losing on the other. So it's kind of hard for most defense to account for both of us."


TEXAS A&M HEAD COACH DENNIS FRANCHIONE


"I’m real proud of our team, the way they bounced back from that first game. And I’m really proud of our coaching staff. It was a team effort all the way across the board. I mean, our defense got four turnovers and 250 yards. Pressure -- I think both the offensive line and defensive line have to get some credit tonight. We pressured the quarterback well and protected the quarterback pretty well this evening. That was instrumental having a third straight game without a turn over. That's huge. Courtney welcome back and Reggie had a fine game. I thought Erik Mayes played fantastic. A lot of guys you can go across the board with a number of them that played well. The crowd was awesome this evening. You know, there was -- I'm sure it had a impact on their ability to function somewhat and they did a great job for us. It was just wonderful experience in that regard.


(is this a landmark win) Well, you know it's like we talked the other day. We won't know that until we look back. But it is a big win. You beat a top 25 team at home and get yourself to 2 and 1 going into open day and getting ready for Big 12 play and -- you know, we got to go back to work tomorrow and I think the open date comes at a good time for us to get some things cleaned up and better, but it was a big win. Any time you can knock off a top 25 team and do it convincingly like we did and is significant.


(on the difference between this team and the one that played Utah) We all said after the Utah game we were better than that. The coaches said that and the players said that and to their credit they never waived with that and they hung together and we played a very good football team that night at their plays and stuff situation and a lot of our kids played their first football game. This team can get better as we go along. Especially with positive reinforcement with a victory like this one right here."

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