Tuesday the football press conference was held to discuss the results of the homecoming game as well the strategy and mindset for this week’s opponent North Carolina A&T University.
The conference began with an introduction of the panelists, which included Head Coach Joe Taylor, Offensive Assistant Edwin Pata, Taj Jenkines, Demetris Lane, Vernon Wilder and Anthony Collins.
Players said with them losing the game by a mere field goal made it clear that the game was extremely close.
Graduating football players expressed that the loss of the homecoming game came as a devastating blow and the desire to win was immense.
Taj Jenkens, a senior quarterback from Jacksonville was disappointed with the loss.
“Our offense executed poorly and just didn’t get the job done,” said Jenkins, 21.
A reoccurring point each player made was about the “questionable” 10 penalties the team received.
Junior Demetrius Lane said he felt strongly about the uncertain calls by the games referees.
“The game was a real dogfight and those penalties really hurt us,” Lane said.
Players said had the excessive penalties not been incurred, the Rattlers would have had a better chance to win.
Vernon Wilder, a top player from Miami, Fla., achieved his first interception during the game.
“The game overall was very exciting for both the offense and the defense,” Wilder said.
Taylor and Pata made a number of points all leading back to the issue of consistency.
“Everything was in place for a great homecoming, which we did have, but during the game we came up short,” said Taylor.
Taylor’s advice to the players for the upcoming game is to work harder, have a lot more energy and to stay on pace.
Pata focused on the issue of consistency.
“If the players would have given 100 percent for the entire game the outcome would be more positive,” said Pata.
According to the team, aside from the penalties and ultimately the loss, the game was very exciting and was a testament to the fighting spirit of the team.
The Rattlers said despite the loss everyone involved with the team is optimistic about future games and looks forward to a win in North Carolina.