Sept. 18, 2010
Derek Dooley quotes vs. Florida
Opening statement "It started out like one of those old fashioned SEC football games. Both offenses really struggled. The defenses were playing well. I was proud of how we competed. We had a ton of adversity. I mean a ton - more than we ever need in a football game. Because of the fact that we kept swinging, we were sitting there in the fourth quarter and it was a seven-point game.
"When we look back on this game, it starts with the fact we didn't win the turnover battle. We spit the ball out three times. We'll never win doing that. We couldn't run it a lick, and we'll never win doing that. We couldn't get off on third down on defense. We never could affect the quarterback. We never could get in his face. They blocked us, and we couldn't hold up in coverage. That was the difference in the game. I'm proud of the team, but we've got to learn from it and correct the mistakes."
On the fake punt by Florida in the third quarter ... "It was a big play. I take responsibility for that one. It was a good call by them. They hadn't run a fake in a long time on a punt. We're always alert on the fake, but we weren't in safe. Looking back, we should have been in safe punt. We were trying to make something happen a little bit. We had the guy hit and almost had him down but didn't get the tackle. So we had a guy there, but it was all on him and that's tough when you have it all on one guy. They made a good play and got us on that."
On where Tennessee struggled the most ... "We had some young guys in the middle. We had a new center in there. Then in the second half, (JerQuari) Schofield went down so we had James Stone in there. We had freshmen and a new guy at center. They're (Florida) good up front, big and physical. They were packing the box. We weren't taking any heat off the run game because we weren't completing a pass, either. It was tough plowing out there, and sometimes it gets like that."
On the interception in the end zone ... "It's a play we've run a lot. Matt did a good job in practice, missing high. You want to either throw it up high toward the crossbar on that play or hit the swirl underneath. He just shot it a little low. That was a big play. When we get down there on the 3, you can't turn the ball over."
On the team playing against the highly-ranked Gators ... "They've got some big guys and they're fast. Some of our young guys, they had some big eyes out there. That was a great environment for big-time college football. It will pay dividends for us in the future to be in that. They were really struggling up there early."
On making progress this week compared to last week ... "I'm disappointed in how we ran. I didn't think we did very well on offense. We did a lot of things that we didn't do in practice. So that tells me it's experience - when you haven't been out there in those games, to keep it simple and stay calm and execute the simple things. We made things a little more complex than they had to be, and that comes from experience."
On the struggles defensively on third down getting pressure on the quarterback ... "We could never get any pressure on the guy. When we blitzed, they blocked it up. We couldn't hold up in coverage. When we played coverage, it just stuck. That's a concern. If you can't get a little heat on the quarterback, you can't hold up. They were pushing us around on the back end and throwing it right at the sticks. They just out-executed us. They were better than us on third down."
On how the team competed after adversity ... "We should do that. I'm proud of them for that, but that's what we should do every game. That's kind of a bottom-line standard. All that does is give you a chance, and it proved out. It was looking bleak there and the next thing you know you just keep fighting and get the turnover and make a play and cut it to 7. We don't execute a kick, so they get good field position and convert a couple of third downs. We had them third-and-10 on the 40 and they throw it right at the sticks and get the first. That's the difference. They pull way and it was tough plowing from then on."
David Oku, RB:
On putting the loss behind them:
"Coach Dooley said you have 24 hours to be mad about it. We have to come back on Monday and correct it and move onto your next opponent. If we dwell over it too long, UAB can sneak up on us and get us too."
On playing with poor field position:
"They had us backed up a few times which killed us and limited our play calling back there. We were on the one and then inside the 10 again. It's something we have to eliminate as a team and as a whole so we can start off with better field position."
Nick Reveiz, LB:
On the Vols' gameplan versus Florida:
"Florida has a very physical offensive line. They did a good job of giving their guys a lot of gaps and getting big runs but that was something our coaches did a great job of preparing us for. We have to get off the field on third down. We have to get more pressure. That's on the linebackers and the front. We have to make it easier on those backend guys."
On competing hard for the whole game: "That was something we took personally as a defense. I didn't feel like we competed all 60 minutes last week. As a leader and a senior, that's disheartening. I really felt like this week we really went out there and put it all out on the line. Really, that's all you can ask but we have to be better."
Chris Walker, DE:
On not stopping the run in the second half: "They just made plays. We came into the game knowing they had great backs and Demps is a very fast guy. We made some mistakes up front and on the back end on where we fit, he's a good enough player that he's going to hit the crease and he's going to be gone."
On Florida's run game in the second half:
"Not really, I don't think they changed anything. It was just later in the down we got a little tired but other than that I think we handled it really well."
On the offense not getting on the field:
"We didn't do a very good job getting on the field. Our coaches told us that and we know that as a defense, we didn't do a very good job and when it comes to games like this we have to get our offense back the ball and we didn't do that really well."
Matt Simms, QB:
On the touchdown pass to Moore: "Yeah, it was just a sprint out and it was one we definitely thought we could hit a home run on going into the game. As soon as coach called it I got a little smile on my face and was excited because I knew we had a play coming. Denarius ran a great route and I just put it on the spot for him and he took care of the rest."
On the touchdown pass to Hunter: "It was one of those plays that we kind of game planned knowing their safety would bite down on the underneath route and I was just looking to find him and buy a little time and throw it up there and give him a chance to score."
On the interception in the end zone:
"Just didn't throw it high enough and maybe babied it a little bit but during the game it didn't really affect us I didn't think. We did a good job of fighting after that and we definitely dealt with adversity a lot better than we did a week ago and although we did a lot of bad things today, we improved in a lot of phases and we're going to be a good football team the rest of the year. We're going to use this as motivation and we're going to keep fighting and we're going to win a lot of big games this year."
Head Coach Urban Meyer:
"I thought our opponent played really hard. I think you saw two young football teams trying to figure it out out there. I was very proud of our team for coming on the road and winning in the SEC. I think that's never something you should take for granted. I'm very proud of our guys.
On the performance of the Florida offense:
"I think that's who we are right now. I was disappointed in our first half, but we came out in the second half, got the ball and the momentum changer. Omarius (Hines, So. WR) made a great play there. You have to capitalize anytime you run a trick play. If you don't capitalize, that's as bad as not making it. I told our offense to take it down the field and score after that.
On the performance of the Florida defense:
Defense played well. I think we only gave up, I believe, 29 yards rushing and other than two lost coverages, I thought our defense played very well.
On the continued difficulties getting plays in on offense:
We're not getting out of the huddle fast enough, not getting the plays in fast enough. That's something that is going to happen on the road, but that's something you have to address in practice and it has to get better."
John Brantley, QB
On the road win:
"It was a lot of fun, it's a great atmosphere and we prepared really hard this week and it definitely paid off today."
On his first SEC road game
"I was a little nervous. The SEC is one of the best conferences in the country and you're going to get the other teams best shot in every one."
On the offense, when Demps couldn't run at will:
"We just kept fighting, we stuck with our gameplan and the offensive line just kept pushing those guys back towards the end."
Jeff Demps, RB
On Frankie Hammond (WR)
It was nice, Frankie deserved it, he's a hard working kid and plays hard for our team."
On what the offense can do when the running game is difficult:
"We have a great passing game and we have a lot of great playmakers on the field, so if the run isn't working hopefully the pass is, and if the pass isn't working, hopefully the run is."