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South Carolina Gamecocks vs UMass Minutemen: Will Muschamp Postgame Press Conference

Muschamp talks about Carolina’s win

NCAA Football: Massachusetts at South Carolina Jeff Blake-USA TODAY Sports

On the game overall:

Proud of our guys. It was a good win, we needed that. We certainly made it interesting, took a 20 point lead there midway through the 3rd quarter, we haven’t been in that position before and obviously didn’t handle it very well. But we’ve just got to continue to clean things up.

On the defense:

We just didn’t play very well defensively. It was a lot of stuff we’ve repped and gone over, so I was a little frustrated with our performance defensively.

A disappointing day is what I would really consider it…I was not very pleased with our mental intensity defensively. In my opinion we got up 27-7 and relaxed.

On the offense:

Thought the offense did a really nice job…finishing the game with the ending drive. We were much better on third down.

On whether Jake Bentley is the permanent starter or if Brandon McIlwain will continue to challenge him for playing time:

Brandon will continue to challenge him every day, no different than any other position on our football team. We went in the open week and evaluated all positions and felt like we needed more production at the position…I felt like Jake did some nice things today, but obviously some things he can improve on and he will. And Brandon will continue to improve. I’m very proud of Brandon and the job that he has done.

On the difficult position the freshmen quarterbacks are in:

What they’re doing is very difficult. They’re playing as true freshmen in the Southeastern Conference, much less playing at the quarterback position, which makes it triply so...But I think that what they’re doing is very, very difficult and we’re working through it and we’ll continue to work through it and I thought that we did improve, regardless of our opponent, offensively today.

On deciding to burn Jake Bentley’s red shirt:

At the end of the day we felt like he had progressed very well...It wasn’t [a difficult decision] for me.

On how they knew that Jake Bentley deserved a shot:

We take those guys [that play less in games] and scrimmage…The only way you can improve the bottom half of your roster is to play the game of football…Jake obviously has been involved with that and we thought he did a really nice job.

On making changes to different positions:

The question you ask yourself is if the alternative is better than what you’ve got. Because we’re not gonna make change for the sake of change, that’s not the point. There are some situations on our team right now that quite frankly I’d like to change. But we don’t have an option, that’s what we’ve got.

On the attitude of the team:

That was an excited locker room because we won, but it was also a locker room that knows we need a lot of corrections, especially on the defensive side of the ball. So that’s a good thing. It’s a good thing that they recognize that improvement needs to be made.

On potential for the future and how good Jake Bentley could be:

Let’s just take it one day at a time. We beat UMass. It gets tougher next week.