Arkansas Players Post-Game Quotes
RB Raheim Sanders
On playing in his home state
"It has felt good to be here. I've had my family out here and it just feels good, man. I feel like this right here is the game that set me up for next year. We're starting off a new year, we got the 'W' and it's been great to be here, especially as a freshman, as well."
On stepping into the endzone for the first time at Raymond James Stadium
"I am not going to lie, it felt just like that Texas game when I got in the endzone. I've got my family here too and some of these people didn't make it to all of my games, like my cousins are out here, as well."
On the changes Arkansas made to the run game in the second half
"We weren't really changing ourselves, but we put a couple of plays in there. They were still the same plays but some plays we haven't really run since the Texas game, I'm not going to lie to you. But we looked pretty good. We talked and came out there, both running backs and the offensive line, and we got it going."
On being a part of the Arkansas Football program
"I definitely feel good being here. I definitely believe in Coach Pittman, the running backs coach here, as well. You know, I didn't get to visit anywhere else but UCF and Florida State, so I definitely feel good to be here. I've trusted them from the jump and I feel like when it comes down to anything, it's about putting the work in. We definitely put the work in during the fall and the spring. So, it's pretty good to be here with all of the Hogs fans, as well."
On his transition from receiver to running back and whether he feels he's playing where he needs to be
"Definitely. But I can definitely still show the receiver side of me, as well. Like I said when I first got here, I told Coach Pittman, "You can put me anywhere. I just want to play and I want to get playing time." So, if I get the chance, I will do whatever to help the team and better myself."
On what the future of the Arkansas program looks like
"With this 2022 class coming in, I feel like we're going to have a good season next year."
On scoring touchdowns in his home state
"It felt good. I know a lot of people tuned in and I had a lot of tickets to give my family. I have even more family and friends I wanted to bring but it's been good to be here. Definitely in this sunshine weather, as well. One of the first practices we had, I was just ready to go. It felt like Little League again."
On whether he knew the plan for the running game after halftime
"Definitely because we came out a little sluggish, man. That's what it comes down to. After that first quarter, we had to get it rolling. The second quarter we came out here and we had to get it going. So, the second half, we came out here and attacked."
On whether he knew he'd play such a big role on this team during preseason
"No. No, no. Like I said, I came here as a receiver. I was scared about not knowing the plays as a running back and the steps and stuff like that but I definitely believe in Coach Pittman and Coach believes in me. So, me coming in January, I ain't going to lie... It helped me a lot because I came here scared not knowing the plays. January definitely came in handy."
On winning the bowl game and getting to nine wins on the season
This right here is starting us off. Looking back in the past, before I committed here and just doing a little research, I feel like this is a big win and a big season."
On Arkansas' 361 rushing yards in the Outback Bowl and setting a team bowl record
"I feel like I want to give a big shoutout to the offensive line. They were just working and after that Mizzou game, we just got together as a team and I feel like having that week before the game, that gave us time to bond together."
DB Joe Foucha
On how big the interception was that he had late in the game
"I knew it was really big, it was in the red zone so we really needed a stop at that point. Just to do it for my team, that was big for me."
"I told myself, find a way, find a way, make a play, and when I saw him staring the received down, I just stayed back and went to the ball, because I knew it was coming. I was just telling myself to make a play, and I did it."
On what the mindset was going into the locker room at halftime
"Like Coach (Sam) Pittman said, we've been down before, and then we were coming out with the offense on the field, so I just told the guys on the offense that if we score, we're going to get a stop for y'all. And that's how it happened."
On what it was like celebrating with his teammates after the win after the season that they went through
"It was the best feeling. We definitely did it on a big stage in a bowl game. My teammates were happy and I was happy with them.
On what it was like to finish the season with this type of win
"It was one of the best feelings because we haven't gone 9-4 in a long time, and to do it on this stage, to with three trophies and going into this game wanting to win four, we did everything that we said we were going to do."
On what has been so big about the defensive transformation
"Just the game plan that we have with the three-down front, we get to fly around as DB's. It's an amazing picture to see when you have all of your guys running to the ball when you run and hit - that's our motto with the DB's, that's what we live, eat and breathe, run and hit."
On what was talked about at halftime
"We've been down before. The first game of the season it was the same result and we didn't get down on ourselves, and we came out in the second half and finished the game and it worked out for us in our favor."
On how much of a weapon KJ Jefferson is running the ball
"It's a huge weapon because most guys don't want to tackle him. He's matured a lot from last year to this year, he's gotten way better and he leads the team the right way. I think that helps out on defense as well because he gives us a break and we go out there and back him up.
On where he is with his decision to come back next year
"That's something I've been thinking about a lot. I am going to talk to my coaches and figure it out with them and I'm going to make a decision in a couple of days."
On being a big part of the first 9-win team since 2011
"I just told myself to stay and it was all going to work out, work out in the end. We came through a rough transition, but it all paid off in the end."
LB Grant Morgan
On how this win felt
"That was great! I think every person in Arkansas deserved that, (win) right there; the way we played, the way we came out in the second half, we ran around like a wild band of Razorbacks, that felt good."
On how it felt when defensive coordinator Barry Odom put the defensive formation of all three of the LB's on the field at the same time
"It showed that he had faith in us and he knew that we could get the job done, but at the end of the day, he knows how we play. We fly around, we're reckless abandoned, we just go out there and we hit people and we hit hard and we do it every single play. It was fun. To be able to play with them at the same time, especially like we did for a couple of snaps today, it is something that we going to cherish for the rest of our lives."
On being part of this turnaround and being one of the team's big leaders
"I would just say that I'm a piece of it. I think there is no certain person that took a chance and said 'I'm the guy,' we all fill our roles, and mine was to be vocal to everybody. I'm going to be able to tell people for the rest of my life that I played on the 2021 Razorbacks and that we beat Penn State in the Outback Bowl. We talk about stories all the time, and we wrote our story today and it was a great story."
On taking the Arkansas uniform off the last time
"I honestly did not want to get out of the uniform, that's exactly how it felt. To be able to stay out there and be able to shake as many people's hands until it (uniform) gets ripped off by the equipment guys, it was just a wonderful thing to see. The support we get as players is unbelievable. I went and shook the hands of some of the band members. People don't realize that everyone is out there supporting us as players and it was a surreal moment to be out there for one last time."
LB Bumper Pool
On how it felt when defensive coordinator Barry Odom put in the formation for all three LB's
"We've been talking about it all year. We love playing together, and finally, they put in a package this week because of the personnel with the guys out, so being able to play with those guys on the field at the same time is just an honor."
On what the defense did to slow Penn State in the second half
"We just continued to play well. In the first half, I thought we played well, we just gave up some big plays, which happens, but we have to block those things out when we're in coverage, but for the most part, I'm just really proud."
On whether he was going to get caught up with the emotion and make an announcement tonight
"The only announcement I'm making tonight is where I'm eating dinner."
On when an announcement may be made as to when he's coming back
"I'm going to take a couple of days. I've honestly been thinking about nothing but this game, I know that was the job to be done. Whenever the game is over, sit down with my parents and talk about what I should do. But this day was so amazing and I'm really proud of the guys that came back. All of those things go into it, but I'm going to take a couple of days and see what happens and make a decision."