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Malzahn reacts to Auburn's win over ULM

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(Auburn)--Auburn overcame a slow start to tour Louisiana-Monroe 42-14. The following are head coach Gus Malzahn's post game comments.


Opening statement…

“I’m happy with our ninth win of the season. We came out a little slow, which is uncharacteristic of us. At halftime, we really challenged our guys, and they finished like they should have. In the third quarter we played really good football, and we put the team away as we should have. Defensively, I’m real proud of the turnovers. We scored a defensive touchdown which is great. Offensively, we were fairly balanced. We had 300 yards rushing, and that’s what we really needed to do. You need to give those guys credit. That was a really good coaching staff. They had a week off, and they had their biggest win before that. We knew that they were going to come out and give us their best. We’re sandwiched between two number one teams, and that’s a challenge. I’m very happy with our group, getting the victory and setting ourselves up for the SEC West next week.”

On the slow start…

“I think it was odd. We didn’t have that edge that we have. We talked about it, and we really had a good week of practice. We didn’t come out like we have the last five or six times to start the game, but every game is valuable from a coach’s standpoint. Even though we didn’t start out real fast, we came out after halftime and took care of business.”

On Kam Martin…

“Kerryon Johnson was a little tired during one of those drives and he [Kam Martin] started out as the backup. He came out fresh and it was like he just shot out of a cannon. He’s done a solid job for us all year. He really gave us a boost when he came in.”

On Nick Ruffin and Javaris Davis…

“It’s great to have Javaris [Davis] back and healthy. He had that pick and then he stripped the ball which was a big play. Nick Ruffin looked like an offensive player.”

On the offense…

“The last two weeks we’ve had long drives, and it says a lot about the character of your offense. You have to be able to run the ball to do that and finish, so it’s really something. Our guys have a lot of confidence.”

On initial thoughts going into the Iron Bowl…

“They’re undefeated and they’re number one in the country. That’s probably the best way I can answer that right now. I’ll be better to answer that on Tuesday after watching a little bit more film.”

On Auburn’s progression this season…

“I tell this group that I’m really proud of our team. Four weeks ago, if you told them we were in this position, I don’t think there would’ve been a whole lot of people around the country that would believe it. Our team has put ourselves in the position to play the number one team in the country again, on our home field again. Our crowd is second to none. They’re going to be ready, our players are going to be ready and our coaches are going to be ready. It’s going to be a special game.”

On Deshaun Davis…

“He’s all over the field. He has great instincts, and he’s one of our better players.”

On how the Iron Bowl will decide the winner of the SEC West…

“I want them to enjoy this and relax their bodies and minds tonight, and then be ready to go. I know they will be ready. They’ve worked extremely hard getting to this point. That was their goal to begin with. We made that clear, so we’ll be ready to go.”

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