Post Game Quotes

Sept. 14, 2013

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Head Coach Todd Monken
Opening statement...
"I think it played out like I thought it would. Sometimes that doesn't work out. I thought they had a good football team. I still believe we have a good football team. I thought our guys, again, fought and played hard. But obviously you're going to have to score more than three points to give yourself a chance. I thought we moved it at times well enough to give ourselves a chance to stay in the game and try to force them out of what they want to do, which is control the game, run the football, play action. Some things I think are encouraging, but at the end of the day there are no moral victories. I really thought if we played well enough today no matter who came on the plane with us, we would have a chance to win. I still believe that today. We still turned it over too many times. We started the game off with a turnover. Luckily, our defense came right back and got one, but we are improving as a football team. I told our team today that I couldn't be prouder of their effort. That's all we can ever ask for is that our guys buy in, play hard, continue to fight, and they do that. That's all you can ask as a coach."

On Southern Miss' defense...
"It's been encouraging for three weeks that our defense has given us a chance to compete. I'm sure if you asked Coach Duggan, there's things about what they did that they wish they had back. But right now their margin for error is so small because we're just not scoring enough. That's obvious. That's not rocket science. We've got to get down there and score touchdowns. We can make all the excuses in the world. We had a holding call, and we missed a field goal, some lost yardage plays. But at the end of the day we've got to continue to grow and score. It's a game where you've got to find a way to score touchdowns and we didn't. Early on we had a chance at one and we get a holding call, so at the end of the day we didn't give ourselves enough of these opportunities."

On Southern Miss' defense...
"Defensive perspective, I felt the first half we came out with a little energy and a little edge. We kind of fell off at the beginning of the second half, and then we kind of picked it back up. As far as our defense, I feel like we were doing a good job coming together as a whole because we've got young guys out there right now. But I feel like as a unit we're starting to come together as a whole, and not just individual pieces. That's one good thing. We've just got to give the offense the ball and give them opportunities. We need to work on our turnovers. We need to start causing some turnovers on our side of the ball."

Jalen Richard
On the offense's inability to produce points...
"I think our problem when we get in the red zone is that we kill ourselves, whether missing alignment, and it always starts with that. If your alignment's wrong, you're dead from the start, or penalties, delay of games, or such and such. I think that's the only thing killing us right now, is ourselves when we get in the red zone."

Arkansas Head Coach Bret Bielema
Opening statement... "AJ (Derby) got more and more comfortable out there. Couldn't ask for him to handle that second half any better. I thought our coaches did a nice job with Alex (Collins), getting some plays they felt comfortable with him. Obviously they executed with time. I know [AJ Derby] was a little bit rattled coming in there. To get out of there with a W and then play the fourth quarter the way they did. Alex to go over 100 (yards) again, Alex being the first freshman running back in SEC history to go for three 100-yard games out of the gate. A lot of great players have come through this league so obviously that's a nice feather in his cap. We're excited about that. As far as Brandon Allen, I don't have any information other than it didn't appear to be anything more than a bruise. Didn't want to put him back in there today, it's still a little bit tender. He seems pretty convinced that he'll be back by the start of next week so we'll see where that goes. Grady Ollison has an ankle but nothing that appeared on an x-ray so I don't know how long he'll be out, but to have a couple guys step into those positions, I'm very, very proud of them. Not a real sexy game. Very, very unusual first half. The helmet that got stuck in a guy's jersey, never seen that before. Kind of a sign of the times. This group keeps moving forward. It's a group that learns every day. I know that they'll learn a lot of different things, but we need to just keep making baby steps, keep playing fourth quarter games and keep getting wins in the right column and we'll be alright."

On AJ Derby...
"I was pretty confident in him. AJ has played a lot of football. I played football with his dad so I've known the kid forever, which is kind of scary. AJ is a footballjunkie. He prepared very, very well. He's a very detailed guy. AJ is AJ. He's going to do some things every once in a while and you're like `what are you doing?' I think our kids like AJ, which makes it that much better. He's really done a nice job of bonding and gelling. Brandon Allen, you know, whenever he's done playing I'll have him has a coach. He did a great job in the second half, calling plays down and using the headset. I think our kids had confidence, which is the main thing. We used some things that he feels good about. Obviously, in the world of college football, on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday your reps are pretty dominant towards your ones so he doesn't get near the reps but there are just some things AJ does well. You saw him take off, AJ is probably a better runner than Brandon Allen. Originally when I recruited AJ out of high school, back when I was at Wisconsin, we offered him as an athlete, a linebacker or tight end. He thought he could play quarterback and obviously he can so I'm glad."

On the defensive surge after halftime...
"I thought our defense did. That's what we've said. I went into half time and told the defense, they've got their own locker room, and I just went in and said, `Hey fellas, we can't give them any free stuff.' We had that one long pass play that set them up in scoring position. We can't afford to do that any time. When you lose your number one quarterback and you're rallying around number two, it is very important to do that. I thought those guys really came out with that demeanor. The fake field goal, obviously, we're telling them to watch the fake, watch the fake. I think it was Jarrett Lake who made a nice play there. I can't say enough about how those guys handled that."

Travis Swanson
On AJ Derby...
"I think AJ went in there and did a great job for getting thrown into the fire so suddenly like that. I think he did great."

Travis Swanson
On Arkansas' running backs...
"It's great to have those two guys go for over 100 yards. As an offensive line we didn't do exactly the things that we needed to do today to help them. They should have had more yards. It's a pride thing for us and when AJ (Derby) came in, we wanted to rally around him."

Alex Collins
On the running backs in the second half...
"We did the same thing that we do every week. We went into halftime and saw what we were doing wrong and tried to make up for our mistakes we made in the first half so when we went back out for the second half, we had a better game."

On being the first freshman in SEC history to rush for 100 yards in the first three games...
"I am honored. I have to give my offensive line credit first, and my whole offense. The defense had a good stand out there today. I just appreciate all of the things everyone has been doing for me."

AJ Derby
On his first completed pass leading to Jonathan Williams touchdown... "It was big. Winning first down is something we talk about a lot. We got four yards on that play so the defense had to back up a little bit and they weren't ready for that run and Jonathan Williams broke it."

On his performance...
"Things came easy to me. I thought the offensive line and all of the players really supported me and it felt right being out there with all of the guys."

on the second half...
"I felt really good in the second half. Our offensive line stepped up and our running backs did a great job. It took a lot of the pressure off of me and we did a great job offensively."

Trey Flowers
On his interception...
"We ran one of the few plays where the ends drop back in coverage and I just read the QB's eyes and put my hands up and came down with the football."

On not allowing a touchdown in the game...
"Most definitely, that is one thing we take pride in is keeping other teams out of the end zone. They got a field goal today, but when they got it in the red zone it was one of those bend but don't break defensive efforts."

Chris Smith
On his performance today...
"That is one of those things the coaches do well. They put us in the right positions and I am just blessed to go out there and get it."

Chris Smith
On his 3.0 sacks...
"At the beginning of the game I felt a little double teamed, but with everyone back it started opening up and Trey (Flowers) with the pick really helped. I just went out there and played the game with my technique and used the fundamentals."

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