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Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Live blogging Gene Chizik's press conference

Gene Chizik has arrived. Here's what he has said so far:
  • "After going back and really looking at last weeks' game tape, we still have some great areas of improvement we can look at."
  • "This will be a great week for us to go back and focus on Auburn and get better."
  • Chizik said handful of guys will be "day-by-day" this week. Translation: if you're hurt, you probably aren't playing against Chattanooga.
  • "I hope it's not really challenging for us to stay on the track of being focused. ... We have to come in here every day with the mindset to improve."
  • "We've proven we have a chance to be a really good team. I don't think we're there. But you see flashes."
  • He extends his streak of mentioning the offensive line being physical to seven weeks.
  • Pleased with special teams making plays. "I think coach (Jay) Boulware has done a great job with our young guys and getting them into the special teams lifestyle."
  • Wants to limit the explosive plays against: "It seems like we're giving up that one long run or one long pass every other game that we've got to focus in on trying to prevent."
  • Chizik said he dressed up as a head coach for Halloween. Easy joke. Few laughs. 2/10 on the joke scale.
  • Said he likes to do things like the Halloween costume contest the other night to keep the mood light: "I think that's what we need to do for the players when we have a window of opportunity to do it."
  • On doing fun stuff on Friday nights before the game: "We always try to treat our guys first class, because that's what we expect them to do when they represent Auburn."
  • On QB Cam Newton: "Every weeks it's been an educational process for us on what he can and can't do. ... We know he can pass, we know he can run, we know he can throw. There's not a lot he can't do. It leaves us options to explore for sure."
  • Another BCS distraction question: "I know they see it, they hear it, but I know in my heart of hearts that's not an issue right now. ... The only thing we do is we talk about what we can do this week. And then we do the same next week. I think it's an unspoken rule."
  • On how it's affected his time: "It's a little more time consuming. But it's all part of the deal. Anything we can do to promote Auburn University, I'm all-in."
  • On Demond Washington: "He was a force in the return game last year. We're hoping he's kind of getting into that mode now."
  • Said Auburn has some challenging wide receivers ahead and Washington's play will be key: "His game needs to be at his best here as we move forward."
  • Chattanooga has thrown for over 2,200 yards. Said there's a great mixture of what it does offensively. "This is a good football team."
  • Said Shaun Kitchens is day-by-day. Said stuff about standards and needing to mature. That doesn't sound like an injury issue.
  • Lots of offensive guys producing, but Chizik singled out some of the dirty work guys. In the middle of him listing them off, a voi
  • "I'm not sure that we have a better defensive lineman playing out there right now than Zach Clayton." High praise, considering Nick Fairley could to win SEC Defensive Player of the Year honors.
Bonus Newton quotes:
  • On distractions: "If I in the slightest try to indulge or entertain myself with that, I'm already behind on preparing for the next time."
  • On the Halloween costume contest: "It was having fun. That's what this program is all about. ... You could just feel the family vibe."
  • On Mario Fannin's costume: "I still can't tell you what he was."
  • Was it a good break? "Absolutely. I think these coaches do an excellent job of knowing when to and when not to play."
  • On NFL thoughts: "I'm not standing up here and giving you how I'm feeling right now. How I'm feeling right now is UT-Chattanooga."
  • Newton said he'd deal with NFL thoughts at the end of the year. "We're still trying to do great things around here."
  • Newton has been volunteering some of his time at a local elementary school. "It's no big deal to take time out of my day to work with a little kid because that's my passion."
And that's a wrap.

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