Transcript: Fuente Press Conference
Go Tigers!
Justin Fuente

Go Tigers!
Justin Fuente
Go Tigers!

Oct. 8, 2012

Opening Statement
"Thank y'all for coming. Obviously we're traveling to East Carolina. Coach (Ruffin) McNeill has done a great job there. Defensively and schematically, they're very similar to the defense we play. The strength of their defense without a doubt is their front seven. They are pretty special football players. They are athletic, hard-nosed and tough. Offensively, maybe as skilled as any that we've faced this year. I know our kids are ready to go prepared this week and have great practices and continue to build this program."

On the defense stepping up in the second half
"I think the defense played so well that it allowed the offense to continue and try and run the ball. If the defense hadn't been playing so well, then offensively we may have had to stray away from the plan. They overcame some of the offense's mistakes and really kept us in it. I think we're starting to understand as a team that getting the job done is what we're looking for. How it happens or who gets the glory, we're not really concerned with. We just want to get the job done."

On the win helping the team's confidence
"You see the way the kids came out in the second half and were just determined to try and take the game. We have given ourselves that opportunity four previous times and have been unable to get over the hump. It's good for everyone to see us get over the hump and finish the game."

On what the defense did to help pull out the win
"If you look at the stats, they played a pretty good game overall. I thought we tackled in space better. It wasn't perfect but it was better. I felt like some of the things we tried to emphasize on the perimeter came through early in the game. I felt we did a better job in handling the perimeter screen game early in the game that nullified that for the rest of the game. We rushed the passer well and covered down well. One of the keys I thought was handling the perimeter game early, which is good to see from our defense's standpoint. It was something we made a pretty large emphasis on in the off week."



On the play of East Carolina
"Defensively, they are super athletic. They are as good as we've played. Offensively, it's the same thing. Their tailback is an exceptional football player, and have tall tight ends and a quarterback that is finding his way. We'll certainly have our work cut out for us."

On Eric Mathews coming into the game
"I imagine that it will continue depending on how he continues to develop in practice. I'm a big believer in if you continue to go out there and practice well, do the right things and prove to us that you can execute, I believe in giving you an opportunity. We're very open with our kids. If you go out there and practice well, you'll play on Saturday."

On the play of Alan Cross
"Alan Cross is a tough and smart football player. He plays hard every snap. I'm happy that we've got him and looking forward to keeping him around for a long time."

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