Coach Johnson discusses Wake Forest game

Nov. 24, 2008


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More Quotes: Players comment on the WFU game

Head Coach Bobby Johnson
Quotes from Weekly Press Conference
Monday, November 24, 2008
Wake Forest Game

Opening Statement:

"I think we have a very important football game this week as our team prepares for Wake Forest. Obviously to me 7-5 is much better than 6-6 so that is what we are shooting for. We have to get refocused and we have to be ready to play this Saturday. There is no school this week, so maybe that will help us. Hopefully we can get some of the guys back that are banged up right now. Again, this is the 14th week of the season so its been a long time to be at it and the injuries are starting to mount up a little."

On being relatively fortunate on the injury side of things until the last couple of games:

"Until the last couple of weeks, we have been pretty fortunate. We had a few guys out early in the year that we knew were not going to be able to play this season like John Cole and Brandon Bryant. Darlon Speed missed five games for us, but overall our team has probably been very fortunate until this past week."

On the difference between Chris Nickson against Kentucky and Tennessee:

"I think Tennessee's defense had something to do with it. Everything is never one person's fault. I thought Chris (Nickson) could have had made some better decisions and executed a little better at times, but Chris has the capability to do a lot of good things for our team. Mackenzi (Adams) played well and we are probably looking at playing him, but he has a sore knee so we have to keep all of our options open at that position."

On if the loss to Tennessee is any more difficult to handle then others:

"To me they are all the same. You have 12 regular season games that you are going to play so you have 12 chances to go out there and perform. We have been good most of the time, but I don't think we played well against Tennessee. When you're playing a 12-game schedule, you never know what is going to happen each week."

On if he looks forward to a week like this where the players don't have school so they will have their sole attention on football this week:

"It's not a whole lot different because the coaches spend almost all of their time on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday planning for the upcoming game and then you bring the players in later in the afternoon to go over with them what you learned and what you are going to teach them in the gameplan. One of the advantages of not having school this week is it will give the players more opportunities to come over here and get some treatment, lift weights, watch some film on their own. Overall though, I don't think it will be that big of a difference."

On the problems Vanderbilt had with the running game against Tennessee:

"First off, we didn't block well enough. Our first team tailback got injured (Jared Hawkins) and those two things don't help you. Another thing that didn't help our running game was our trouble establishing the passing offense against them."

On the status of Jared Hawkins' injury and how the team approaches Wake Forest from a running game standpoint:

"Jared (Hawkins) will not play Saturday against Wake Forest. We are going to have to get Jeff Jennings, Kennard Reeves, Gaston Miller and Ryan van Rensburg ready to play. I know one thing, and that is we aren't going to play with 10."

On if he has discussed the bowl options with his team:

"No, because I don't know what the options are. Nobody knows for sure what the bowl situation is going to be until it happens. Our coaches and players are focused on Wake Forest only. We want to get our seventh win this weekend, and we will let the rest of the stuff sort out by itself.

On if you are encouraged with what you saw out of George Smith Saturday:

"Yes. George knows he has to step up because he is a sixth-year senior so he knows that he has to make some plays for us."



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