Bobby Johnson Weekly Football Press Conference
October 21, 2002
I thought we played a very good football team this past
Saturday. Especially this year, we have said that if we dont
play extremely well and the other team doesnt help us
a little bit, it is going to be tough for us to win those
kind of games. I thought Georgia played extremely well, and
even though we started off fairly well we did not play well
the whole game. Those are the types of games you get into
sometimes, and we are going to have to work through that and
Q: How about an update on injuries?
A: We dont know about Robert (Dinwiddie), but
Brett (Beard) will be fine. With Robert, we are still examining
his knee and seeing what the major problem is there. I think
Brett will be back. We are just going to have to deal with
the injuries. That is something every school has to go through.
It has been real tough for us, obviously. They dont
help at all and they seem to hit us pretty hard at certain
Q: What about the defensive line?
A: Aaron Carter has had some playing time this year
because of injuries and is starting to be a really good football
player for us. Antoine Morgan will get some time now and start
to learn his position and be a better football player down
the road for us. There are some positive things that can come
out of injuries, so we are going to try to make the most out
Q: That was Antoines first action of the year. Has
he put on weight since arriving?
A: Antoine is tall and thin right now Coach (David)
Turner calls him Stickman. We think he has the
potential to put on the weight and has added some weight since
he got here. We think he will get bigger and stronger, and
become a good player for us. But right now, he is young pup,
a thin one at that.
Q: Tell us about what you saw at the crash scene?
A: It was a frightening scene. I was ahead in the front
bus, and I didnt know it happened. They stopped our
bus and a patrolman walked up, sticks his head in the window
and says, a truck hit one of your buses. That
was pretty scary. From then on, were almost in a panic.
When I drive up (with the patrolman), the bus is on the opposite
side of the road, the truck is almost obliterated, windows
are broken out of the bus. You were expecting the worst, but
fortunately it wasnt as bad as it could have been. It
was nothing we want to make light of, but I thought our team
handled it about as well as they could have. I told them yesterday
that I appreciated that no one panicked. Nobody pointed fingers
or anything. They just stayed calm and collected.
Q: Were some of your guys more banged up than you first believed
following the bus crash?
A: Brett Beard probably had a bruised hip. The coaching
staff took the bigger hit being up front. Coach (Warren) Belin
was slowed yesterday. Robert Dinwiddie did hit his knee on
one of the chairs in front of him. I think Jovan Haye actually
cracked out a window with his head. It did not help, but it
certainly could have been worse. We are thankful for that.
I should also say that we are very fortunate the fourth
bus did not hit the bus or truck. That bus driver did a great
Q: What about Benji Walkers status?
A: He still has an extremely sore ankle and did not
do very well in practice yesterday. Hopefully, a day off today
will get him well. I think he will be able to compete.
Q: How about the performance of Kwane Doster at tailback?
A: Were proud of Kwane and what he has done, and
not very surprised about it. At the beginning of the season,
we thought we would be able to run those tailbacks in and
out and not have a dropoff. That was including Kwane, with
Ronald Hatcher and Norval McKenzie. There is always an adjustment
when you are the main tailback. We tried to spell Kwane with
Matthew (Tant) and Jason Bourque also got some carries toward
the end of the game. Physically, he has a big adjustment to
make. Kwane was getting nine or 10 carries early on, but now
he is getting more carries and picking up a bunch of yards.
He has responded well and has stayed even-keel, just going
out and practicing hard. He does it in the game too.
Q: What are you planning to do regarding kickoff returns,
with Doster as the main tailback?
A: We might put him back. He certainly has a knack for
it. He can get through the tiniest hole with some speed. Thats
a talent. Hopefully, we will not have so many kickoffs.
A: What about changes in the defense? Are you spending more
Q: No. Our coaches work extremely hard and they try
to get every advantage we can get. When you have great receivers,
running backs and linemen like Georgia has, its hard
for us to match up. We are going to look every week and see
what the best way to match up is. If it takes dropping nine,
well drop nine. If it means bringing eight, well
do that. Its a week-to-week thing, but personnel has
a lot to do with it. It depends on a lot of different things.
A: How about the status of Moses Osemwegie? Will he be back?
I hope so. He is not full speed. Moses can run. He is fast
and goes all over the field to make plays. That wasnt
the real Moses Osemwegie you watch on the field against Georgia.
A: Which game film will you use to get the most from Connecticut?
Q: All of them. We chart all of them, take statistics
off each one, and try to see what their tendencies are. They
have the problem as us. Weve also played at different
levels. Someone told me that UConn is no Georgia.
I said, were no Miami either. We both have
the same problem.
A: Do they remind you of other teams?
Q: They do some things like South Carolina and Middle
Tennessee, run some draws by the backs with the quarterback
keeping it sometimes. Early in the year, they used the option,
but I didnt see a lot of it against Temple. We are going
to have to be prepared for a little bit of everything. Defensively,
they are a lot like Mississippi the way they line up.
A: Can you attack Connecticuts rushing defense?
Q: We always plan to try to run the football against every
team we play. Thats where we start, hoping that it sets
up everything else. Theyve had problems stopping people
on the ground, but that doesnt mean it will happen this
Saturday. We will always test people on the run.
A: Talk about Dan Stricker coming back and handled his role?
Q: Dan is a captain and a leader. He has acted that
way the whole year. He wants to help the team as much as he
can, whether he is catching 10 balls a game, five or none.
Thats the way he goes about it. When he gets the opportunity,
he makes the plays. He made an unbelievable catch on the sideline,
then followed it up with the big catch to the one. He blocks
and does everything we ask him to do. We are very pleased