After suffering one of the largest defeats in program history and surrendering a record high 784 total yards, FAU’s football team looks to improve going into this week’s match-up against the Alabama Crimson Tide.
Regardless, Coach Partridge was upbeat on Monday during the second of his weekly press conferences. Below is some of what he had to offer.
“We need to improve fundamentally, execute better and improve game day coaching and communication. If we can get those three things done by the end of this week then we will be a better football team,” he said.
When asked about facing off against the number two team in the nation Coach Partridge said, looking around, “Alabama is Alabama. They have amazing depth and great talent.”
However, he did seem less interested in talking about Alabama and more interested in talking about the Owls.
Partridge also stressed closing the door on last week’s contest.
“We need to learn from what we didn’t do well and build on what we did do well. There’s no more time to think about it. We’re getting ready for this weekend,” he said, “Our focus this week is on FAU.”
Despite the result against the Cornhuskers, Partridge must have seen a fair amount of potential, going as far as to say that he is “in no way shape or form in panic mode", he affirmed. “I have all the confidence in the world in what we do. We just need to continue to get better at it."
Partridge attributed the below average performance to the fact that players started trying to make plays that they shouldn’t have tried to make.
“It’s a natural human reaction, to try and help the team and end up trying to do too much. We just have to have faith and have each guy do his job and we’re gonna be fine,” he said.
As far as the team’s health goes, two key starters suffered injuries in last week’s game. Quarterback Jaquez Johnson and defensive back D’Joun Smith left the game early and have been listed as day-to-day.
It seemed as though Partridge was somewhat hopeful that his starters would return, but he didn’t appear to want to push them along too quickly either.
“To me if they are medically ready and safe and everything is stable, then it is the right decision to prepare them to play, then make a game day decision on Saturday,” he said.
He continued, ”I will be there when the strength test is done and I want to get a feel of how strong they are. Can they protect themselves? That’s what the decision will ultimately come down to.”
The Owls will take on the Crimson Tide Saturday at 12:00 PM on the newly formed SEC Network. It will mark the second time the squads have faced off. Alabama won the previous meeting 40-7 back in 2012.