Coach Jones' Comments Following Thursday's Practice



April 17, 2008

On this weekend's C-USA series against Southern Miss
"They're ahead of us in the league and they're playing so well. What happened last year or the year before has nothing to do with this year. I really think this is a very big weekend for us. It's a critical, postseason-type weekend as far as the atmosphere and the ramifications. Even though it's mid-April, I think this will have a lot of impact on our season, and we're approaching it that way."

On the importance of playing well this weekend
"We have to have a sustained streak down the stretch to ensure postseason for us. Southern Miss and the way they're playing effects it even more. Our approach has been so good, I haven't had any issues with the way we've been playing. We haven't always played as well as we want to play, but our energy level and our commitment to it has been at a level that I feel is really good most days."

On the team's progress so far this year
"We're 25-11-1, so it's not like we have an awful record. It's pretty good. At the same time, I think there's more there. If we can get all the pieces of the puzzle finally in the right place, we're capable of doing some things. Having said that, we're playing great competition in our league and it's not as easy as it looks sometimes."

On how the team has come together
"This club was so new (at the beginning of the year) that we're still trying to find out who fits best where. Look at how our weekend rotation and how it has changed over the last three weeks. It's because we've got so many new guys and you don't know how they're going to happen and how they're going to perform. And that's not unique to this year or to our team, it's the fact that we so many new guys. Every year you have guys who surprise you one way or the other, but this year we had so many new guys that the surprises have more plentiful because you don't know them until you coach them in a game situation."



On what the team has had to overcome this season
"We've had to deal with a few things. Every team deals with adversity, but the thing that defines you is how you respond to it. We've had five surgeries this year and we've just had our second player lose his dad (this season). It's not 100 percent focus on baseball every day when you go through these things. The new schedule adds to it, but at the end of the day, I still think we have a chance to be really good."