How big was the play to Blizzard, in turning this thing around?
It was big. It was the opening possession of the second half. We felt like if we had scored, momentum would have been on our side big-time. That play really hurt us, but that is a part of football. Things like that happen. I told Bobby, "Just keep your head up. You will have some good plays and some bad ones. You can't let the bad ones get to you.'"
When you saw Bobby running down the field, did you think he would score?
Definitely. A play before we went in at halftime, he was on the sideline, the guy fell when he was trying to tackle [Blizzard]. He told me as we were going into the locker room, once he got the ball in the open field. He was going to make something happen. I told him I would come and see him. When I saw him break free, I just knew he would get in there?
Was it frustrating to stand on the sidelines and think that you were about to go back on to the field, when Georgia Tech kept sustaning drives on third and long?
Definitely. We are the side of the ball that puts points on the board. Without the ball, it is very hard for us to score, as a team. It was definitely frustrating sitting on the sidelines.
What were your feelings when you thought you were about to go out onto the field and then they sustained a drive on a long third-down or with penalties?
It's just like taking the air out of a balloon. We know that in order to score, we need to be on the field. Turnovers don't happen that often out there, so we knew we needed to be on the field to score.. We were hoping that the defense could come up with a stop."
Take us through your thoughts on the long pass play and fumble.
All week, we knew they ran a lot of cover-two. When the safties split, I saw a bunch of green. Darian knew where to throw it, and it hit me there. As far as the fumble, it was a close call. I don't know if I was down or not, but it's tough. Right now, I feel like I blew the game, personally, judging by the score.
I was looking at the end zone. I had tunnel vision. I saw the last guy. I don't know how the ball got out. I thought that I had it pretty secure, but that's the way the game goes sometimes.
What did Coach Bunting say to you? You were obviously trying hard and giving good effort, trying to score.
Nobody really said anything. The players were trying to get me back into it, but it was hard for me to get back into the game, in the beginning, because I've never had anything happen to me like that before. I was looking at the score, "Dang, we're right there. It's 21-13. I could have scored, and we could have been there. I just feel like I cost my team the game."
When you caught it, were you just thinking "Touchdown"?
After I broke the first tackle, I don't even know where he came from. He hit me and bounced off, and then I saw the other guy. He didn't have any control over me. I felt I could drag him into the end zone, because he was a little guy. Somehow the ball came out, and I tried to get to the ground as fast as I could. I thought he was going to call it down. It was a close call.
What was the feeling when it looked like you were going to stop them and a penalty sustained their drive?
It's frustrating. You want to get off the field. You want a three-and-out. I don't want to play much. I want to give our offense good field position, and I want to give them enough time to come back. We're down a touchdown and two points. Give them good field position and give them a chance to score. We'll come back out and play hard. Again, it's frustrating, but that's when you have to step up, and we didn't."
What about the crucial third-down plays where they kept the drives going?
You want to win third down. If they can convert third downs, they can do what they want. We have to win third downs. That's what the defense is. You tackle, you make plays, and you get three-and-out.
A lot of people assumed that since Hollings was hurt that you automatically had an advantage, but somebody has been opening up holes for him.
That's what I said earlier this week. A running back is only as good as his offensive line. There center is good, their guards are good, and I played against #70 and he's a good player. Their running back was able to hit the holes hard and run up the field. He didn't have any long runs. It was just short stuff, and that kills you.
Are you surprised that Coach Bunting would bench a guy like Waddell?
I am surprised, but Coach Bunting is not going to keep someone out there, just because he was a starter. If you aren't getting the job done, it's time to put someone else in to do the job.
Did you say anything to Bobby Blizzard after the fumble?
No, because they don't say stuff to us when they get a 15-yard run on third down. We are a team. I don't blame anybody for the loss but myself. I can't point a finger at any other player but me. Did I do my job to the best of my ability? No. They ran the ball on us.