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Saban: Ole Miss win was a 'big step forward' for the team

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Head coach Nick Saban. Source: WBRC video Head coach Nick Saban. Source: WBRC video
TUSCALOOSA, AL (WBRC) -

Below is the transcript of Monday's press conference with Crimson Tide head coach Nick Saban, provided by UA Athletics:

"That was really a great win for our team, and I think a big step forward for us as a team because of the way we competed in the game. Players played hard and gave a lot of effort in the game. Lots of players did a good job, whether it was special teams, defense or offense. The question now is are we going to be able to build on this, continue to improve as a team and not be satisfied with where we are so that we can improve and get better execution and improve consistency in things that we do and how we play. Whether it's a mental error on a punt return where we don't hold up a guy right, or whether we don't block a back or run through on offense and we get a negative play because of it. Better attention to detail, do it this way. This is how it has to be done, technique wise, fundamentally. Carry it from the practice field into the game. Don't go ‘rat-trap' in the game, be able to stay focused and disciplined in what you do so that we have a chance to be successful on a more consistent basis.

"Players of the week – you got that information. Kevin Norwood, Anthony Steen, T.J. Yeldon, Ha Ha [Clinton-Dix] and C.J. [Mosley], and C.J. was the [SEC] defensive player of the week. He's played great for us all year long. Landon Collins, Dillon Lee, DeAndrew White and Cade [Foster] and Cody [Mandell] all did a good job on special teams.

"I don't think we have any injury problems that you don't know about. Ryan Kelly will be the guy that will not play in this game for sure. Other than that we are not really practicing today. We are just doing walk through and stretch-and-stride. We do this every so often on Mondays so that the players get two days off from practice. We still do all the things that we do mentally, in terms of scouting report, game plan that we put in on Monday, whatever those things are. My experience in the past, when we have a seven game stretch here, when you play more than five or six games in a row, players start to get worn down and tired. Two days rest does 10 times more good than one. [It] doesn't do two times more good. It does 10 times more good.

"We respect every opponent that we play regardless of record. The team that we play has talented players that can make plays. Our focus needs to be on what we need to do to improve as a team. They have a coaching staff that does a good job of coaching their players. They are a well-coached team, and they have players that are capable of making plays, like every team. You see these games – Akron almost beats Michigan or whatever it is. There is nothing to be taken for granted in any team that you play. I think the best way to do that is focus on who you are, what you're doing, how you want to improve and how you want to play to be the best player that you can be. That is certainly going to be our focus for this week."

Source: UA Athletics

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