April 24, 2014

Steve Spurrier and Brady Hoke collaborate for final Outback preview (AUDIO)

Steve Spurrier said the Gamecocks have had a good week of prep in Tampa.

Steve Spurrier said the Gamecocks have had a good week of prep in Tampa.

USC’s Steve Spurrier and Michigan’s Brady Hoke held a joint news conference this morning. It is the final time the two coaches will meet with the media prior to tomorrow’s Outback Bowl matchup. It’s always entertaining to see the awkward interaction between two coaches as they get peppered with questions from the media the day before they clash.

Below are a few of the highlights from the two coaches followed by a link to listen to the press conference yourself. Enjoy and Happy New Year.

  • Both coaches said they’ve had a good time in Tampa and are looking forward to tomorrow’s game. Both are pleased with the quality of the practices for their respective teams.
  • Spurrier said his players don’t like playing in the cold weather so they are happy the forecast is calling for temperatures in the mid-70s tomorrow afternoon.
  • Spurrier clarified his early comments about his quarterback situation. He said it is Connor Shaw’s game. Shaw will start and get the chance to take a majority of the reps, but Dylan Thompson will still play some.
  • Bradky Hoke is still playing coy about Denard Robinson’s role. Says again that he is available to do everything but punt. “Kick off?” Spurrier asked. “Not very good at that either,” Hoke responded.
  • Spurrier said Damiere Byrd dove for a ball in practice yesterday and Vic Hampton got tangled up with him and bruised his thigh. He told them not to dive for passes two games before the game. He expects both to be fine for the game tomorrow.
  • Spurrier said they mostly focus on the guys that are going to play in the game during the extra bowl practice. He said the young guys get a look, but it is difficult to do much with them until the spring.
  • Spurrier said they’ve got ways to move Jadeveon Clowney around to counter Michigan’s attempts to double-team him and slow him down.
  • Hoke said the experience of facing top defenses like Notre Dame’s and Alabama’s this season could be an asset as they prepare to take on USC. He said every team is different though.
  • Hoke was asked what he thought his team’s biggest improvement was this season. He cited the defensive line.

AUDIO: Outback Bowl preview press conference [20:00]