Q. You're a Louisiana guy. You're no stranger to what New Orleans has to offer. Talk about the stay down here and how it's been for you guys so far and being able to get out and kind of get away from football for a little bit since you've been down here.
RUEBEN RANDLE: It's been fun. We had a lot of fun as a team. We've had a great experience so far. Only been down for about two days now. It's been a fun experience for everybody. We're just sucking it up and taking it all in.
Q. Talk about the Alabama defense. Everybody wants to talk about defense, defense, and defense. And rightly so: both are extremely good. When you look at these guys on film, what is it that stands out to you guys that maybe y'all can take advantage of the second time around and try to get the ball in the end zone, which is something y'all couldn't do the first time around?
RUEBEN RANDLE: The first game was very aggressive. So I'm pretty sure they'll try the same game plan, bringing a lot of different blitzes. We have to do a good job preparing for that.
Q. Talk about the turnovers. That was one of the deciding factors in the first game. You guys won that turnover battle. Obviously holding on to the football is going to be key. Have you guys really hunkered down on that during Bowl practice, or is that just something that's kind of mentally in the mindset of you guys?
RUEBEN RANDLE: Oh, we definitely take each and everything we do, especially turnovers. If he's not there, throw it away or just run for it and get positive yards. We're not trying to really get into that turnover battle any more, so take care of the football.
Q. A lot of people want to talk about Miles and his situation. Obviously he's won a lot of nice awards this year, including on Monday would be nice for the national championship. As you guys as players talking about your head coach, do you feel he's overlooked in regards to other coaches in the country when it comes to being considered one of the best?
RUEBEN RANDLE: I think so. But I also think he gets the credit that he deserves also. He's a great coach. We love playing for him. He'd do anything for us; we'll do anything for him. So I think it's kind of a turning point in the season that we all develop throughout the offseason; that Coach will do anything for us, so we're going out there to play our best.
Q. The whole riverboat gambler moniker, is that blown out of proportion?
RUEBEN RANDLE: A little bit, but he just believes in his players. We need a coach who has faith in us to go out there and make plays.
Q. Is that why you like playing for him so much, because he kind of believes you guys can make any play calls at any point, that kind of thing?
RUEBEN RANDLE: I think so. It's great to have a coach that has faith in you, and it brings out the best in you as a player. I think that's why we can do what we do.
Q. What do you guys see from that matchup? Defense was king in that last game. So what about the offense this time? Do you think it takes more points?
RUEBEN RANDLE: I think so. More time to prepare. Pretty sure Alabama will have a great game plan also, so I think us as offense have to do a great job executing our game plan.
Q. Facing Alabama's defense never an easy thing. It's toe to toe. Anything you're going to do differently in this game or specifically improve on to try to get around them and get more points on the board?
RUEBEN RANDLE: Just keying in on things we did really well in the first game, that's block better and pass protect better. They brought a lot of blitzes. We have to prepare for that, and hopefully we can get the ball off in time.
Q. Alabama players are saying that you were the difference in the game, you were the reason things changed. What does that say about this game and your position? Make any difference?
JORDAN JEFFERSON: That shows a lot. It speaks for itself as well. Whenever I was in that game, I added a lot of speed towards the game as far as the backfield and the quarterback position. But it shows that they have a lot of respect for me. And I'm going to continue to keep it that way.
Q. What makes the option so difficult to stop, Jordan?
JORDAN JEFFERSON: When the quarterback is a running threat, then you've got your offensive line securing the edge so the running back can get on the outside. And we've just got a lot of threats. As far as great running backs, good blocking by the O line and the quarterback as a running threat.
Q. Have you thought much about ?? I'm sure you envision yourself hoisting up that trophy after the game. Have you thought about that moment, put it in perspective with everything that's happened with getting to that point this year?
JORDAN JEFFERSON: I thought about it a lot. It would mean a lot to me to hold up that trophy, and LSU would do whatever it takes to hold up the trophy at the end of the day.
Q. There's been some talk from some other guys about whether Alabama deserves to get another shot at this. How do you feel about that?
JORDAN JEFFERSON: I think it's just the team that we'll prefer to play. It's another big game for us. And that's the reason why we come to LSU, is to play big games. And playing Alabama once again will ?? and just playing it once again as the championship game, will make this game a lot sweeter when we're victorious. So I think they deserve it. They're the second best team in the nation. So they deserve to play us.
Q. What do you think about sharing a title with them or with someone else? There's some talk that the AP might vote either you or Oklahoma State (indiscernible)?
JORDAN JEFFERSON: It shouldn't be shared. We're number one right now. But I don't think it should be shared, though.
Q. So much hype about the fact that this is really a home game. If it is, for so many obvious reasons, how much more comfortable are you here than if you had to play this game someplace else?
JORDAN JEFFERSON: I'm very comfortable here. Played here my senior year in high school for the high school championship game. So quite familiar with the surroundings and about the stadium. So I'm very comfortable about it. And going to try to have the same type of performance in my senior year in high school my senior year in college. Try to make that all merge together and try to repeat the same thing.
Q. This whole year it's been a range of emotions for you guys. Can you talk about the start of the season and where you guys have ended up and just the journey you guys have been on? Quite an exciting thing.
JORDAN JEFFERSON: We've been on a great journey. Been a great season for this team. We improved a lot since the first game, now to this game. And I think the team has a quiet understanding of what it means to be a champion.
Q. Do you feel the stuff you had to go through off the field you're more prepared for a situation like this?
JORDAN JEFFERSON: I feel like I'm more prepared because what I went through before the season was a tremendous amount of adversity, more than can be compared to what will happen to me on the field as far as throwing a pick or fumbling the ball. It's quite easy for me to overcome a situation like that being through a situation like I've been through at the beginning of the season.
Q. The last time you played in this building obviously for the state championship you had one of your better games as an athlete. When you play in this building, do you kind of feel like your game elevates a little bit?
JORDAN JEFFERSON: I feel like it does. Basically a home crowd for me. I grew up about 15, 20 minutes away from here. So I've been in the Superdome quite often. I mean, it's something that I would call a sanctuary for me. So I'm preparing myself to have a great game on Monday and just rekindle that flame that I had in high school once I left here.
Q. How much will it affect you knowing that you've got your friends and family here? Obviously a lot of players do, but especially for you knowing you've played in that game, now you're playing in this game?
JORDAN JEFFERSON: I mean, it will have a major effect on me. It's something that I will want to do for them no more than anybody else. I want to do it for the people that are here for me and that really are true fans for us and that will be standing in these stands cheering us on. So I'd like to do it for them.
Q. Go back to November 5th. Talk about that, the interception.
ERIC REID: It was a man coverage. I was on my man. I saw a big guy running free. So as a safety you're taught not to get beat deep, so naturally I tried to get behind him. When the ball's in the air, I just went and got it.
Q. Looking back, it looked like a guy was coming across and got held up by the ref. How often do weird things like that, where you may have been in one place if something weird hadn't have happened ?? How many times has that happened in the course of a game?
ERIC REID: I mean, there's stuff like that all the time. The refs do tend to get in the way sometimes. Especially as a safety, you come down, trying to get in the box, there'll be linebackers out, you might bump into the ref a couple times. But the rules say they're an extension of the field, so you have to deal with it.
Q. The hype that's been surrounding this game, is it something like you guys have experienced before, or is it just completely new, completely something you've had to adjust to this week?
ERIC REID: I mean, it's the same as most of the games we played this year. You start the season off with Oregon. We played Alabama, a lot of ranked teams. It's not something that we're not accustomed to already.
Q. What is the craziest thing you guys have seen on Bourbon Street or any events you've been to this
ERIC REID: I pretty much stayed cooped up in the hotel, so I haven't hit Bourbon Street.
Q. What's the best food that you've had? Let's go there.
ERIC REID: I forget the name of the restaurants we've been to. I'm from Louisiana, but I don't know New Orleans. Where we went last night was pretty good. I think it's called Zea's or something.
Q. How cool is it we're not only in SEC country but an all?SEC national championship game? How cool is that for you guys?
ERIC REID: It says a lot about the SEC. We like to say it's the best conference in the nation. So when you come here, you play with the expectations of winning a championship. And somebody in the SEC is going to go home with a ring.
Q. Eric, we were asking some of these Tide guys what are they most afraid of pretty much, and they kept answering with trannies. Do you take offense to that?
ERIC REID: I don't take offense to it. But it's not really my thing either. I stay in the hotel. So I don't really see those people.
Q. No, no, it's just like they're more worried about these guys on Bourbon Street than they are about the upcoming defense. It's just like, really?
ERIC REID: I just focus on what I can focus on. That's going to practice this afternoon and getting better and preparing for this game.
Q. Whenever they threw that pass with Marquis Maze that you intercepted, what was going through your mind whenever it was in the air and you were running for it?
ERIC REID: Not to get beat deep. I knew it wasn't my man, but I knew somebody had to get there, so I just tried my best to get back and get the ball.
Q. Did you know you intercepted it before the referee made the call?
ERIC REID: I thought I had it all right. After the replay I saw he had the ball first but I was able to wrestle it away. The whole time I thought it was an interception.
Q. What are you going to be thinking if they try to run it again Monday night?
ERIC REID: We'll be more aware of it after seeing it and getting beat on it almost the first time. So we're going to know those formations and do a better job.
Q. Seemed like Alabama wants to get their tight ends involved in this game. Do the safeties cover the tight ends usually on the defense or linebackers?
ERIC REID: Depends on the call. Sometimes the linebackers, sometimes the safety. But we just gotta, like I was saying, doing a better job getting everybody covered on the field, and that way they don't have any advantages.
Q. All right. And which different coverages would you have to like?? like, for instance, if you're pulling back, obviously you wouldn't go with the tight ends, but if you pull up to the line of scrimmage, you would? Is that the way it goes? Is that way too simple?
ERIC REID: Without getting into any specifics, all I can say is it depends on the call. Sometimes the linebacker is guarding them, sometimes it's the safety.
Q. Talk about just off the field, how exciting is it to be able to play with ?? play against Eddie Lacy two years in a row having came from the same area?
ERIC REID: It's something that we talked about in high school. At that point we didn't know what our lives would be like at this point, but we knew we had big plans. And we told each other when we made it to the next level we were going to see each other again, and we were fortunate to see each other a couple times.