December 27, 2013

Strong: We are right where we need to be

Preparing for a bowl game is tough work for a coaching staff. Not only do you have to scout the other team and construct a winning game plan, but the coaching staff also has the responsibility of keeping the team motivated through the holidays and nearly a month off. With the Russell Athletic Bowl now just one day away, Coach Charlie Strong said he likes the mindset of his team. He said the Louisville football team is healthy and mentally focused on its matchup Saturday against Miami.

On being back in Orlando:
"It's game preparation so we were focusing on first and 10 and play action. We have been practicing for a week now. It's all about the game and the approach to the game. We just have to be sharp and focus on our keys and responsibilities."

What do you notice about Miami:
If you look at them offensively, they are a good football team. They have a very strong offensive line. Their wide receivers can really run and the quarterback does a good job of managing the offense. Defensively, they don't give up the big play, and they will make you earn everything you get."

On health heading into bowl:
"We are right where we need to be. We have some nicks and bruises, but no one that should be out for this game."

What a win would mean to program:
"We are playing a quality opponent. We are playing an opponent that now we are going into the ACC, will be on our schedule next season. It's going to be a measuring stick at just how far we need to go and just how much better we need to get."

On Miami QB Stephen Morris:
"He is surrounded by some really good players. He just does a great job of just managing the offense. Their offensive line does a great job of blocking. They are big up front and the wide receivers do a good job of getting down the field. They have a lot of speed and they play at a high level."

On the loss of Duke Johnson:
"Duke is an outstanding player. Anytime you lose a player like Duke it is hard to replace, but they have enough running backs. They have done a good job recruiting so they have guys that are playing well."

On having extra juice for this game:
"They have to understand that they can't get too high or too low for this game. We just have to stay even keel and prepare like we have prepared all season long."

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