Southern Miss vs. Tulane Postgame Quotes
Selected quotes following Southern Miss 26-7 victory over Tulane
Nov. 26, 2005
HATTIESBURG, Miss. - Southern Miss Quotes
Head Coach Jeff Bower
"I feel a lot better. It was a great job by our guys. I thought we did a lot of good things in the ball game. In adverse weather conditions, we had no turnovers offensively. We took care of the football and did well in terms of field position. Luke (Johnson) did a good job of punting the football. On defense, we only gave up seven points. We gave up some yards rushing, but we didn't give up many big plays, with the exception of that one long drive. We created some turnovers and those were big for us. I liked how our offense went out onto the field with about four and a half minutes left and stayed on the field. It was a good win for this football team, and I was really proud of our guys. We had some guys really step up and play with some pain in this game, and we needed that."
On Shawn Nelson:
"He's about 235 now, and he has a chance to be a good one if he puts on some pounds. It finally happened tonight where I saw how well he did in the open field. He's a good one, and he will continue to get better and better."
On the senior class stepping up tonight:
"They did a great job. We had a senior night on Wednesday, and that got emotional. There was no doubt about our guys wanting to go out and win this game. They did a tremendous job of motivating our football."
On 12-straight non-losing seasons:
"That's special. Being 6-5 is probably not where we wanted to be, but it was an unusual year. There are no excuses but with the schedule changes, all the away games and all the injuries we had, out football team never quit. I think this team has really shown a lot of heart."
On if the team deserves to go to a bowl game:
"There is no doubt. We are expecting to. With the consistency of this program, we should get in. We are bowl eligible, and we deserve to be in a bowl."
"I can't imagine what they have been through. You can tell emotionally where it has really affected that team. We felt at the beginning of the season that this would be the most talented Tulane team we would play with Coach Scelfo as the head coach. They have stayed healthy, but you don't know how hard it is to be away from home and on the road every week. Good things need to come their way based on what they have been through."
Southern Miss Player Quotes
On the win:
"The win was huge for our senior class. We didn't want to break the tradition. It was a lot more emotional today than I thought it was going to be, but it was a big time win and big for our seniors.
On Shawn Nelson:
"He's a big time player. He still has a lot of talents that he hasn't shown. It was good to get him the football. He makes one guy miss and he takes it to the end zone. He is going to get better and better."
On being bowl eligible:
"It's exciting. We hope that everything works out for us to go to a bowl, and we are going to make the best out of that situation."
On if he studied the bowls:
"I was more worried about winning this football game. I really didn't keep up with where we would go."
Tight end Shawn Nelson
On the game:
"It was a big game for me. It was one of the biggest games I had all year. I caught the ball on that play and went all the way to the end zone - that felt very good."
On if he feels more like a wide receiver: "I played wide receiver in high school and they put me at tight end when I got here. So I took that challenge."
Linebacker Kevis Coley
On the game:
"It meant a lot, especially for our seniors, to come out with a winning season and to be bowl eligible. We knew that it was a must win for us and we did what we had to do to win the game."
Defensive back Trevis Coley
On deserving to go to a bowl game:
"We deserve it. It was good for our seniors to go out with a winning season. Our backs were against the wall tonight, we just had to come out and do it."
Tulane Head Coach Chris Scelfo:
On the season being over as well as the difficulties they've had:
"I don't think this season was the worst. This is a group of guys that have a lot of character and have really persevered. We didn't lose any players; they all hung in for the whole duration. I was disappointed in our wins and losses, but that's the competitiveness of us all."
On Matt Forte's performance:
"Matt looked like he did in the spring and last fall. I think he came into the game the healthiest he's been. He rose up, and I'm really proud of Matt."
vOn the fake punt:
"It was something I heard Anthony (Cannon) talking about. He just wanted the football any way he could get it. He wanted to play tailback today. It was a situation where we knew that if we could convert and score we would be right in this thing."
On the season:
"This season was very disappointing, but it is something that you have no control over. You try to go on with your normal life as much as possible, but it was hard and it emotionally took its toll on us this season. I was surprised that guys competed every week because of what happened."
On the end of the season:
"I wouldn't say that I'm happy to get it over with, but I'm definitely relieved. All of the emotional strains and being away from your family is over."
On the passing game for Southern Miss:
"They beat us on some big plays, although a lot of stuff they did, we expected it. We also made some mistakes here and there. They're a good team and we just got outplayed today."
On their season:
"This has been a tough road, but every week we tried to go out and keep our pride by representing our school and our city and I feel that we did that. We didn't get the results that we wanted, win-wise, but we got a lot out of this season that we can take with us in life."
On their plan against Southern Miss:
"The past couple of years, we've ran well against them (Southern Miss), so we felt that we could run the ball on them from the line of scrimmage."
On how he feels about his teammates and coaches:
"I'm very proud of my teammates and coaches by the way we handled this season. We have a lot of character on this team."