Tuesday, January 1st, 2008


On his play in the game: “Days like this, games like this, you can’t dream about it. Guys talk about being in the zone. I was in the zone today.”

“The offensive line did a great job. All I did was run through the holes. It was our best team ever at Missouri. It all came down to that.”

On if he had heard of Dicky Maegle: “Yeah, he’s the guy that was tackled off the bench.”

On if this is his last game at Missouri: “I’m just trying to enjoy this day. It was a great day for my team; it was a great day for my family. I want to enjoy this first, but everything else will come.”

On coming back for his senior year: “You couldn’t write your senior year any better. This is why I came back.”

On when did Missouri realize it was going to be able to run on Arkansas: “When they wouldn’t get out of their man coverage. It was during the second quarter, right after Tony broke off that long run. We knew we would be able to run on them all week long, when they started talking about shutting down the tight ends if it wasn’t all smoke and mirrors if they stuck to it.”

On Arkansas’s defense: “They changed up to some zone, but they were still dropping nine.”

On Tony Temple: “When he starts running well, we usually throw better. We didn’t throw very well today, but it didn’t matter, because Tony was the guy.”

On Dicky Maegle: “Yeah, we had heard about the guy that tackled him off the sidelines and stuff like that, so we knew a little bit about him.”

On coming back from the loss in the Big 12 Championship Game: “It says a lot about the senior leadership, the coaching staff (and) the whole team. We didn’t want to say we backed into (the Cotton Bowl) or woe is me. That’s not what we’re about. If we were like that, we would have pulled it up after the first Oklahoma game. We only lost to one team this year and had the best season in school history.”

On a playoff for the Football Bowl Subdivision: “I don’t think you ever want to have LSU or USC on your schedule all the time, but it would be great to play them. They’re giants. They’re unbelievable teams. We just wanted to come out here and support the Big 12 and show them what we’re about. I think we did that today.”

On how important this game was for Missouri’s recruiting in Texas: “Words can’t describe it. There were a ton of recruits out here and a ton of high school coaches. That’s the first thing with recruiting, your high school coaches. Our relationships are pretty good with them right now.”

On pre-game articles about the matchup Missouri’s tight ends against Arkansas’ defense: “When that article came out, we thought it was disrespectful. We didn’t want to say anything in the media about it. We didn’t want to get upset about it, but it was definitely going around the locker room, it was definitely being shown on phones. Our tight ends were aware of what they were saying. It just shows the Big 12 has some power to it.”

On Tony Temple’s Cotton Bowl record-breaking performance: “That’s a huge accomplishment that he just accomplished. He’s been that kind of back all year but we’re just the type of football team that you wouldn’t know it. When we give him the ball with a chance to roll with it, he does great things for us. I’m so proud of him. He’s a part of my senior group. If he comes back next year, he will. But if not, he’ll always be a part of my family and my senior group. He did a great job today.”

On winning the Cotton Bowl: “It really hasn’t sunk in yet. I know one thing we’re the best football team to have played at the University of Missouri. 12-2 and Cotton Bowl Champion, it’s so great to say and be a part of that situation. Like I said earlier, I don’t expect this to stay around too long because those guys will be great next year. We might be on top for one year but that’s good enough.”

On his play in the Cotton Bowl: “It’s just one of those things where you go and you work hard all year round. You want to put it on the field. I’m a prime example of one of those guys that try and go out and work in the spring and summer. When it’s game time, turn it up.”

On Missouri’s offensive play: “Overall we put our 30 points that we usually do so that was big. All the guys had a big day. A couple of the receivers were quiet but also contributed with blocking downfield. That was real big for the team today.”

On the keys to Missouri’s defensive success: “Playing physical. It was all about filling gaps and knowing your assignments. Usually we get over-hyped sometimes. Guys try to things that they shouldn’t be doing; getting out of position, not playing their gaps and doing other peoples’ jobs. Everybody did their assignments today so that was big.”

On Missouri’s defensive play: “We knew we could come out here and be dominant; go out there and do our thing. We’ve been practicing great all year long. We just tried as a defensive unit come together and say if anything goes wrong make sure it doesn’t happen again.”

On Missouri’s accomplishments this season: “It’s a great feeling being the first team at Missouri to get 12 wins and win the Cotton Bowl. It’s a great bowl to play in. It makes us feel good sending the seniors out with a good one at the end of the season.”