U of L head coach Bobby Petrino held his weekly pregame press conference Monday prior to Saturday's game against Auburn. Here is a partial transcript from Monday's press conference.
“Game week is finally here, we are excited for it. I did like our camp. I think we got a lot accomplished. We did a nice job of working hard on our individual skills, working hard on understanding the schemes we want to utilize offensively and defensively. I think our attitude was very good, our work ethic was good and our players did the best that they could do as far putting all their effort into it. Last Friday night we had a mock game which we ran just like a game, really working to get into game shape is really what the idea was. We have never really did two of these before where you run it just like a game but opening up I wanted to make sure we were in game shape and good condition. I feel that we are in good condition and that should help us and carry over and the players did a good job with it so I was excited. I am looking forward to a normal game week where we get to go through our preparation, work hard in the meeting room, work hard out on the field, really understanding all the situations of the game and focusing in on that aspect of it. I think we have had a good week of practices as far as special teams has gone so I am excited to see that. We should be a good cover team with our speed and experience there and our guys have been kicking and punting the ball well so I am excited about that too. We will release a two-deep tomorrow and we are waiting because Auburn is releasing theirs tomorrow so we will do it at the same time. There will be some “ors” in there, obviously at the quarterback spot and a couple of the offensive line spots where there is still competition really so we will see how that plays out as far as the offensive line spots go. I am excited to get started and looking forward to attacking the week. We did come in and practice last night, we brought our players back last night so today will be their normal Monday off."
On if he will wait until Saturday to announce his starting quarterback and if his players know
“Yeah, I think it is a great suggestion to wait until Saturday but yeah our players will know.”
On picking a starting quarterback
“Number one is that you have to have a quarterback that is very competitive and one that will make the players around him better. We have got to have one that is reliable, that we can trust and is not unpredictable so we come out there and we know if we see certain things he is going to do what he has been coached to do. Then he has to be accurate, that’s the biggest thing because guys aren’t going to be open so you are going to have to be accurate with the ball and put it on his right earlobe or his left shoulder or his right hip, got to have the ability to throw guys open at times.”
On how to beat Auburn
“I think defensively we need to stop the run. They have always done a great job running the football and working hard on the tempo. They go fast so we’ve got to be able to get lined up, get the call and play our technique within the call at a very fast pace so that is what we have been working real hard at. Then when we do force them to throw the ball, we have to put pressure on the young quarterback, give him different looks and make him not exactly see what the coverages will be. Offensively, I think it’s real important to eliminate stupid penalties, you know that we don’t go backwards. As long as you are moving forwards offensively you always have a chance to get first downs, move the sticks and keep them on the field. That is what you try to do, keep their defense on the field and you can’t do that if you are hurting yourself. Then we need to be able to take care of the football, making sure that we don’t turn it over and get some chunk plays. That was the fun thing about last Friday night, our receivers made a lot of what we call chunk plays which are big plays. Whether it was going up and catching balls or running after the catch, they all did a nice job of it and some of the young receivers really showed out so it was fun to see.”