What Dan Mullen said about Alabama following Florida's loss to Tide
Dan Mullen and the Florida Gators lost a heartbreaker to Alabama and Nick Saban Saturday 31-29.
Emory Jones led the Gators at quarterback, and he finished 18-of-28 for 195 yards and 1 INT. Florida racked up 440 total offensive yards, including 245 of them on the ground.
Below are Mullen’s comments following the loss to Alabama:
“First off, awesome environment today. I want to thank Gator Nation. It was great to see The Swamp alive and it was an unbelievable atmosphere. The fans certainly did their part. The margin of error in this game was so small and Gator Nation definitely showed up today. I definitely thank them for what they did. That was a fun game to be a part of. You love these games. It’s been 10 years since you’ve had that game in The Swamp, and hopefully we play it more often. To be honest, I hope we play it again really soon later this season. I want that opportunity. But, it was great SEC football.”
Mullen’s main takeaway from the game
“Well when we play big games, the margin for error is going to be so small. You look at the turnover margin – we had one and they had none. We gave up some first downs on penalties… pass interference calls, which were judgement calls that could go either way. But we gave up too many first downs, penalty-wise, to allow Alabama to keep their drives alive. A couple of errors early on weren’t good and a missed extra point. We had a missed assignment on the two-point play. You’re going to go back and watch the film and you are going to see a bunch of things to be honest with you. But, I like the attitude of this team, I like the effort this team has and I think it is going to be very exciting to see our response at practice this week. I never doubted the effort that our team was going to give and I never doubted the attitude our guys had. Our guys expected to win the game today coming into it. I know they are disappointed, but you play in championship-level games and the margin of error is going to be extremely small. We have to embrace that at practice this week. We have to come together as a team with the positive energy of eliminating every little error at practice within our preparation and have it show out in our performance against Tennessee next week.”
Why Florida was trouble for Alabama
“One thing is when a lot of teams play Alabama, they sometimes don’t think they are going to win the game maybe. Our guys certainly expected to win the game and played that way. We did last year and we did this year. I think that was maybe a big part of it. They come to Florida and our guys are excited. Where we are headed as a program, I want a team that can compete for championships on a consistent basis. To do that, you are going to have to beat Alabama. Last year it was six points and this year it was two. Hopefully, we get one more shot at them and get an opportunity to compete for another championship as we move forward. That’s where we want to be in our program and that’s how our guys prepare and expect heading out onto the field.”
On Emory Jones’ performance against Alabama’s defense
“For him, I think it gets him relaxed. In the first couple of games, you learn a lot. I haven’t called plays with Emory as the primary quarterback before and he hasn’t been out there on the field running the plays. When you’re the starter you have to come in and manage everything. There’s a lot on your plate. He was just relaxed and comfortable with everything happening out there on the field way more than he was the last two weeks. I think he’s getting into the flow with the game plan. I think you saw him being a much more comfortable guy out there today. Even his interception was a great read – he made the perfect read, but the ball caused a sail on him right as he got hit on the release. If you look over the first couple of weeks, I thought he did pretty well with some drastic errors. But, I can’t even think of a bad error he made today throughout the course of the game.”
You can watch Mullen’s postgame press conference below: