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Defensive Presser Notes: Auburn

Defensive coordinator Blake Baker and select defensive players met with the media to preview Auburn and recap the Abilene Christian game.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: SEP 10 Missouri at Kansas State

Blake Baker | Defensive Coordinator

  • “There’s spurts in every single game that we’ve been dominant, but there’s times where we let up explosive plays. We need to put 60 minutes together.”
  • “All 3 of those backs could start almost anywhere. They all are unique in their running style, but they all have good balance, speed, vision.” On the Auburn running back room
  • “We’ve been preparing for both guys so our prep won’t change.” On Auburn QB TJ Finley being ruled out
  • “He runs them like a normal play, so I know they’re in his arsenal.” On Harsin’s trick plays and his experience with them
  • “There’s no way in the world I’d be where I am without Bryan Harsin. He took a chance on me as a third year graduate assistant. He’s a really good ball coach, and he made me a better coach for sure.” On the influence Harsin has had on Baker as a coach
  • “The biggest thing is consistency. We’re playing a lot of guys at that position, so the effort is there. We need to create more havoc.” On the defensive line’s performance thus far
  • “He’s a joy to coach. He’s been putting that on film all through fall camp, being physical at the point of attack and getting to those screens. I wish I had a room full of Ennis Rakestraw’s.” On Rakestraw’s interception and how happy he is for him coming back from injury
  • “I’m pleased with the progress he’s made in such a short period of time. You could definitely be seeing more of him in the future. He’s been doing a lot of work even outside of the film room and the practife field.” On Miami transfer CB Marcus Clarke, who appeared sparingly last week
  • “Our goal is to get a 25% havoc rate every week, and we haven’t got close to that these past two weeks.” *Havoc rate meaning negative plays forced, turnovers, etc.
  • “I wasn’t wearing a hoodie this time of year in New Orleans or Miami, that’s for sure. This is the farthest north I’ve ever lived, so I don’t really feel the heat up here.” On why he wears a hoodie when it is 95 degrees outside

Jayden Jernigan | Defensive Line | Senior

  • “His vision is very clear, and when he sees the gap, he hits it and goes. Much like our opponent, K-State with their back, he finds holes and gets going.” On Auburn’s Tank Bigsby
  • “Communication is one aspect. We communicated very well against K-State.” On the key to stopping rushing attacks like Auburn’s
  • “We just needed to fix our mindset. We came in on gameday without thinking too much about our opponent, overlooking them a little bit.” On the halftime adjustments to stop ACU’s rushing attack

Martez Manuel | Safety | Senior

  • “Super blessed that I could get it off. I feel free. When I had it, I just kinda had to stick my arm up.” On being able to play without his cast for the first time last week
  • “They got a lot of good running backs. #9 (Robby Ashford) can run too. Coach Baker is going to draw up some good stuff and we’ll get after it.” On the Auburn run game
  • “Hopefully we ain’t playing in a monsoon, but gap integrity is a big theme again.” On what they took from Kansas State to apply to this game
  • “He’s just got that ‘it’ factor. Now it’s about making sure his mind stays level and he does it again this week. He has a good drive too, every time he lines up he’s trying to win.” On Dominic Lovett’s big performance against ACU
  • “I wish I could tell you. We’ve won two road games since I’ve been here, we’re emphasizing it though. We can’t make it bigger than what it is. We gotta lean on each other.” On how this team can improve at playing on the road
  • “To see him finally get rewarded for the work he’s been doing, that was really awesome.” On Ennis Rakestraw’s interception

Jaylon Carlies | Safety | Junior

  • “Just staying calm in different moments. Sometimes we didn’t keep our poise.” On what they take from the first road game to Auburn
  • “Disrupting a lot of their explosive plays, keeping the ball in front of us.” On what the theme of the week is for Auburn
  • “It doesn’t change it all, we still gotta play the same game.” On the different starting QBs at Auburn