Penn State's Defensive Players @ Rutgers Press-Conference 11/30/19
COURTESY OF PENN STATE'S ATHLETIC MEDIA RELATIONS DEPARTMENT
Micah Parsons | LB | So./So.
Q: Micah, what does James Franklin mean to this program?
A: As a leader, you obviously serve a significant role. He comes in everyday positive, great work ethic, so I think he's the engine to this program. That's how important I think he is to the program.
Q: Will you pay a lot of attention to the bowl projections now that the regular season is over?
A: Yeah, going into next week when all the bowls drop, I will be looking forward to our play, hopefully it's a New Year's Six.
Q: Why is that important to you?
A: A New Year's Six will really show the improvement we've made from last year. Obviously, not getting in the New Year's Six after being in the New Year's Six, so we are working our way back up to being a top tier program and to me that's really important.
PJ Mustipher | DT | So./So.
Q: Robert Windsor, one of the seniors, talk about what he has meant to you as a mentor and just as another guy on the defensive line?
A: He's been a huge leader for me, somebody that I can look to and speak to in any situation. I've grown close with him this year. He's taken me under his wing a little bit, telling me what I need to do in order to be successful because he's done it for a couple years. So just to be able to listen to him, talk to him and pick his brain, it's an honor to be around someone with his caliber, he's done so much for this university so I'm thankful to have him.
Q: Seniors get emotional when it's their final game in Beaver Stadium, what's it like for players who aren't seniors watching that emotion pour out of them?
A: I think it's huge for us because we see we are a part of something special. I think a lot of people don't realize what they have until its gone, or what they have until its winding down. For us to see that emotion, its huge for us because we know we have to take advantage of this opportunity to be around great men in this locker room.
Garrett Taylor | S | Gr./Sr.
Q: What is it like taking that last lap around the stadium for you?
A: It was really special, a little emotional but a lot of great memories in Beaver. I'm just super appreciative of my experience here and what it's brought me, and where it's taken me so far. So, I'm just trying to soak it all in one last time with Blake [Gillikin] was pretty special.
Q: What does ten wins mean to you, what does that say about this group?
A: I take a lot of pride in that. Being a captain of this team, going through a tough schedule and battling, fighting, overcoming adversity says a lot about that character of this team and it says a lot about the talent that we have. It's really special to me and I'm super proud of all these guys that we have.
Cam Brown | LB | Sr.
Q: You talked earlier in this week a little bit about the things that you had and hadn't accomplished throughout the course of your career, almost a little disappointment in there. Do you allow yourself to enjoy? You know, you guys got to 10 wins. That's something that a lot of programs don't do. You've done it consistently throughout the course of your career. Do you allow yourself to enjoy something like this and the bowl that's coming up?
A: Yeah, you have to because it's hard to win no matter who you're playing, no matter what day it is. It's hard to win in college football, especially in Division I and especially in a stage like this. You know, everybody is going to give you their best. Honestly, I feel like you've got to. That's the value of it. You play to win and when you do win, you've got to cherish those moments.
Q: For a New Year's Six bowl, you guys are up for an Orange, Rose and Cotton. Is there one that you prefer there?
A: I honestly want to go back to the Rose Bowl. I started there and might as well end there, right?
Q: Cam, what kind of legacy do you want to leave as part of this senior class whether its five years, ten years or how many years down the road, how do you want to leave your mark on this program or how do you hope that you did leave your mark based on things you did?
A: Honestly, it starts in the building for me. I feel like just being a leader in the building and trying to fight for the coaches and fight for the players and just trying to get things a little bit differently. Just trying to progress and make changes like that, I think that's where I want to leave my mark. If it isn't noticed by the public, then it's fine.
Q: Looking back at these past four years of games at Beaver Stadium, which one maybe stands out as your favorite? What's your favorite memory from playing on this field?
A: First year. My 2016 whiteout. It was probably my favorite game. I didn't play too much on defense, but the punt block plus the fans rushing the stadium. That was unmatched. I mean, it felt like a big group hug for me. Like I said before, I feel like that's a time you'll never forget.
Trent Gordon | CB | So./Fr.
Q: What does it mean to get to 10 wins in a year where many didn't think it was possible?
A: It actually means a lot for us. It shows we had a very successful year. The two losses were unfortunate for us, but we're going to show up in whatever bowl game we get sent to and finish a successful year for us.
Q: What kind of impact has this senior class had on you?
A: I loved all these seniors. Even though I'm only a redshirt freshman I still talk to all of them, they're all brothers to me. It's bittersweet for them to leave, but they're moving on to bigger and better things. But I'm still sad and just wish they could play.
Q: What got you guys going when the team came out with a slow start?
A: We just had to get ourselves going. We have to look at ourselves and say, "Hey, what are we doing wrong?" That's pretty much what we did, we had to amp ourselves up and say, "This isn't how we play football."
Robert Windsor | DT | Gs./Sr.
Q: What kind of impact do you feel your senior class has left on the program?
A: Huge. I remember I committed when Penn State was not Penn State. We helped build it from the ground up. We left a legacy and that's really important and special to me.
Q: What was it like after the game, it seemed like all the seniors were taking their time, can you walk us through those emotions?
A: It's a mix of joy and sadness. You're happy about the legacy you're going to leave but sad because it's over.
Q: What will you remember about playing not only at Penn State but Beaver Stadium specifically?
A: Definitely my boys on the D-line. I was pretty emotional leaving the field then I got to the locker and went to the D-line section and I just started crying. That's when it really hit me that I have to leave these guys, I have never had such comradery before.
Blake Gillikin | P | Sr.
Q: What's it like when you connect on a 70-yard punt? When you hit it, do you know you got it?
A: Yes, it's always nice, especially when the game is kind of in the balance, it feels good. It gives our defense good field position back there. Obviously, I never liked the punting situation, I like it when our offense scores a lot so holding is really great too because I get to be on the field either way.
Q: What were the emotions like for you taking that lap around Beaver Stadium after the game?
A: It's a new feeling. I didn't really feel that way in high school. I won a state championship in high school so it was kind of the peak of my high school career, but this place is so incredibly special. Going out like this with 10 wins again, going to a great bowl game I'm sure, so I'm going to be proud of our guys. That's kind of where all the emotions come from.
Q: Is there a moment either playing football or not playing football that you're going to remember for the rest of your life?
A: It's not even a specific moment, I think just spending time with the guys in the locker room, the relationships you create here with the staff and the players. Those are lifelong relationships where I love some other guy and he loves me back, so it's just that kind of feeling when you come to Penn State. That's probably my greatest recruiting pitch for guys to come here, just the family atmosphere and how much we love each other.