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Blue Raiders face ULM in regular season finale

Kickoff is 3:37 PM on CSS

November 24, 2009 · Athletic Communications

Head Coach Rick Stockstill

Opening Comments:
Last week's game was a good win for us. It kept us in the hunt for a conference championship. If Louisiana knocks off Troy this weekend and we take care of our business, we still have a shot. I am proud of our team and the way we have played.

On early season success helping the team later in the season:
If you look at all the good teams in the country, they play well early. Most teams play up to their capability throughout the season. If they do not do this, they are not going to win many games. We are a focused group. Our guys are single minded. We do not look too far ahead. We do not dwell on the last game. We keep our eye on what we can control.

On Louisiana-Monroe having more to lose this weekend:
We have no control over what Monroe thinks or how they play. They are right, unless BCS schools do not fill up their bowls slots you have to get seven wins. We knew that if we finished six and six we would be sitting here at Christmas. We know we will get their best shot no matter what their record is. It is the last game of the regular season in a very competitive conference.

On having input on bowl bids:
At this point everything needs to be left to people who are higher up than me. I get enough updates and have seen which bowls it could be, but that does not matter to me. I will worry about bowls next week. I know I say the same thing every week, but that is why we have been successful. We focus on the next game, not beyond. Our players are not naive and act like they do not hear about our bowl possibilities. But at three o'clock everyday we bring them together and get them focused. They know what is at stake.

On playing on the road after three straight home games:
We do our same routine. We are not one of those teams who change their routine if we are going on the road. This is a business trip. We are going down there to win a football game. We do not try to do different things because we are on the road.

On progression of the defensive line:
I think our defensive line has played well. Coach (Les) Herrin has done another great job with those guys, but it is the players who deserve the credit. Brandon Perry made a commitment to himself back in January that he would be in the best shape he could be at the beginning of the season. He is playing the best football I have ever seen him play. He has not gotten the sacks some of our other players have gotten, but he has been very consistent and focused. He allows other people to make plays. Chris McCoy has played really well and I think Jamari Lattimore has played really well. They have made a lot of plays, but they have also made a lot of unselfish plays.

On the five game winning streak:
After the first four games, we were three and one. We got beat by two really good teams which put us at three and three. I have to give our players a lot of credit, we never lost confidence or focus in ourselves. We continued to work and got better each week. I told our players, it is hard for teams to match our intensity. They may stay close, but they cannot stay with us. Teams think they are close, but we keep pounding and pounding and break their will. Nobody coaches a team that can be more proud of a team than the way I am of this team and the way they play.

Offensive lineman Mark Fisher
On Monroe's pass rush:

It is going to be a good challenge for us. As offensive linemen, we take that stuff to heart and we have to come out to practice and strive to get better.

They are quick off the ball and very versatile. They move very well for their size.

On getting to a bowl game:
It is good that we do not quite know we will go to a bowl game. It is a good chance, but anything is possible. A ninth win would help us out a lot.

Defensive Lineman Brandon Perry
On Monroe's rushing offense:
Their offensive line is very good. It all comes down to me doing what I do best.

On freeing up teammates when getting double teamed by opponents:
They help me out a lot also. They are so quick off the ball which can confuse the guards. But they come to me a lot.

On improvement of play as a senior:
This is my last year and those other guys are depending on me in the middle of the defense. Everything has been worth it for the coaches, me and most importantly my teammates.

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