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East Carolina Quotes
Head Coach Ruffin McNeill
The better team won this week. We played a top-10 team, and they came ready to play. I voted them eighth in the polls last week, and
it was an obvious mismatch for us. We didn't help ourselves at all with turnovers and long plays given up on defense. Against a great
team like South Carolina, they don't need our help. They have the talent on both sides of the ball to accomplish things. Offensively,
defensively and on special teams they are a very talented team, and against a team like that you cannot make mistakes on either side of
the ball. It was definitely a game where we faced a top-10 team and got outplayed.
Quarterback play today
The play of our quarterbacks today was inconsistent. I've said since the beginning that Shane Carden had the ability to start, and we
did not hesitate to put Shane in. I'm not sure if it's a battle at this point because we'll have to go back and evaluate the film. We have
no problem putting Shane in the game.
What the SC defense presents
They're a defense that can range all over the field, has great length and speed. Lorenzo Ward is a very talented play caller.
Opportunistic is how I would define their defense as a whole. They'll be a strong contender in their division and in the SEC.
East Carolina Player Quotes
Quarterback Shane Carden
On getting a shot coming off the bench today
I knew when I got my shot, I knew I had to make the best of it. I had to come in and do my best. We don't ever want to play like that.
We turned the ball over way too much, including myself. We just have to learn from it, and be ready for our conference game next
On taking something away from this game
It is very hard to lose a game like this, but this doesn't change our goal of winning our conference. We just have to be ready to go next
Cornerback Leonard Paulk
On facing the South Carolina offense
They executed their plays really well, and defensively, we didn't. You have to give them credit for what they did, and we just have to
learn from it and be ready for next week.
On Dylan Thompson's performance
Dylan is a really good quarterback, and he played very well today. You have to give him a lot of credit for the job he did. He put the
ball where it needed to be.
South Carolina Quotes
Head Coach Steve Spurrier
A good game for our guys. We didn't play spectacularly, but we had a lot of good
plays here and there. We also had some bad plays. Hopefully we can learn from
them. We felt coming in we'd have a chance to get the ball off and see what happens.
Probably today the ball was in the air more distance than any game I've coached
here. We got it down there. We didn't hit them all. At least we got them in the air.
Our receivers had fun going after them. D.L. Moore had fun with two touchdowns
and Buster Anderson and so forth. Dylan (Thompson) was good. He was ready to
play. Had a lot of confidence. He was in command out there. He had a few bad plays
hopefully he can learn from, especially that collision on the two-yard line. That was
scary. We never tell him to duck his head like that. It was a good win. The defense
played well. Jimmy Legree had his best game ever as a Gamecock. Some of our
youngsters that got in late didn't do much to stop East Carolina, but it was good to
have a lot of guys playing. We try to win the fourth quarter around here. We talked
about it all week, and Seth Strickland got the touchdown at the end to help us win
the fourth. Other than that we have UAB next week. I don't think anyone got
seriously hurt this week. We should be good to play next week.
On the quarterback situation
We'll do it like we did this week. We'll get Dylan (Thompson) ready. If Connor is 100
percent to practice Wednesday or Thursday, Connor will be the starter. Now we
have the confidence that we have a couple of quarterbacks that can play around
here. Dylan at times looked extremely good in practice. Today he was extremely
good just about every play. We're all proud of Dylan in his first start. The confidence
he played with was thrilling for all of us to see.
If Connor (Shaw) is 100 percent, he's our guy. Now we know if something happens
to Connor, Dylan (Thompson) can go in there and throw it around. That Vandy game
he didn't have much opportunity. That screen play didn't have a chance and they
blitzed him and he got sacked. There's a lot he can learn from playing games.
On the amount of passing compared to running
They were tough on the run today. I asked Shawn Elliott what do you like running.
He said, `Coach I'd keep throwing it every down.' We were getting a lot of yards per
pass attempt and weren't getting much in run attempts. I like when the line coach
says keep throwing.
On the atmosphere
It was a beautiful day. The fans were alive and ready to go. I wish they'd stay after
halftime though. It was 21-0, (East Carolina) could've mounted a come back. Fans,
stay in the ballpark a little longer.
On Connor Shaw's injury
He's got a bone bruise deep in there that just hurts when he throws. It just hurts. I
don't' know how to relate it to something else. It's a deep muscle bone bruise or
whatever you call it. It's just painful. You just have to let time heal it. He'll be fine.
On the decision to start Dylan Thompson
The decision was made yesterday, actually about Thursday because Connor (Shaw)
couldn't throw Thursday. It appeared he couldn't throw much Friday and he didn't.
We were all set. If something happened and disaster struck all over the place, if
Connor said `I can run that zone read with no pain,' we might have considered it, but
really it was never a serious thought.
Defensive Coordinator Lorenzo Ward
On the defense and Jimmy Legree
I thought overall, especially the first (team) defense, I thought we played well. They
got some junk yardage in with young guys, but we need to get them experience. I
thought Jimmy (Legree) developed confidence with his ballgame.
On practicing stripping the ball and seeing it come to fruition
We are creatures of habit and when you practice it that's what they'll revert back to.
We try to teach them the fundamentals of taking the football. We'd like to have
interceptions, but we can create turnovers by taking the ball.
Quarterback Dylan Thompson
First of all I put my full confidence in Jesus Christ. I knew after Vandy I didn't play
my best. I knew that whether I played great or bad (Jesus would) love me the same.
As far as game plan, they coached me up all week. Coach Spurrier and Coach Mangus
did what they do. They're great coaches and got me the chance to succeed.
On the quarterback situation
I don't think we should forget how great of a player Connor is. He's a great player.
My job as the backup is to always be ready. All week I just had my mind focused on
it's my week to show what I can do. We got off to a great start. I hit Damiere Byrd
and it helped my confidence.
On if he was nervous
To be honest I wasn't nervous at all. I was just praying all week. Football is just a
game. I came into the game and told the receivers to be ready. The important thing
is Coach Spurrier gave me a boost of confidence yesterday. He gave me a Bible verse
and told me he had confidence in me. It was, "The Lord your God is with you
wherever you go ... whom then should we fear. (Joshua 1:9)"
On Coach Spurrier praising his play after the game
It's great whenever Coach says something good about you. To be honest I'll try my
best to forget about this tomorrow and come back to work Monday. You never know
when you'll have to be ready to play.
On the passing game opening up
Whenever you have Marcus Lattimore on your team, every team's goal is going to be
to stop him as best as you can. That opened the passing game I believe. You want to
be balanced, but whenever they give you the pass you take it.
On his relationship with Connor Shaw
My relationship with Connor is great. We're good friends. We share as much as we
can about life and football obviously. We got in the film room early every day this
week and watched film.
Wide Receiver Shaq Roland
On getting his first career reception
When I first went out there I was a little nervous. The first pass was a deep pass to
me. I was just thinking (too much). I felt like I was held a bit on it, but I can't change
that. After the first catch I was relaxed and confident, and everything went well.
On playing his first career game
I was very excited. I knew a lot of my family would come out here and support me.
It's just a great feeling to get in and make my first catch.
On what the receivers told Dylan Thompson this morning
We just told him to go out there and relax and do the things he's done in practice.
We knew he was capable of it. We just told him to relax and focus.