BCS championship rewind: Tre Mason and Dee Ford postgame interview

rblack@ledger-enquirer.comJanuary 8, 2014 

Tre Mason makes first touchdown for Auburn BCS Championship Game Florida vs Auburn on Monday, Jan. 6, 2014 in Pasadena, CA.

PHOTO BY LAUREN BARNARD — Auburn Football

Editor's note: While Auburn beat writer Ryan Black makes his way back from California, we'll take a look back at Monday night's BCS championship game. It continues with running back Tre Mason's and defensive end Dee Ford's postgame comments. The full transcript is provided below.

Ford on how Auburn's defense had success putting pressure on Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston early:

"Yeah, that's one thing that we prepared for the entire 30 days that we had to prepare. You know, we was able to execute pretty early, and that's what we really wanted to do. I'm still proud of this defense, man. We affected him early and often the entire game."

On the season as a whole:

Ford: "It means a lot for me to go out my last year. In the entire time we set a goal to have the biggest turnaround in college football history, and it was an amazing journey for me, and I'm definitely proud to be an Auburn Tiger right now. I'm kind of emotional. This is my last time. But I couldn't be any prouder of this team, and I couldn't be any prouder of this Auburn family because we stuck together and we got through last year and we made it here. We started from the bottom, now we're here. We didn't win, but at the end of the day, I'm still proud of my team. Like I said, it's great to be an Auburn Tiger."

Mason: "Same for me. I'm proud to be an Auburn Tiger. But this season meant a lot to us. We all bought into having the biggest turnaround in college football, but I apologize to the Auburn family and the rest of the fans that we didn't finish. We didn't finish what we started. That's a great team, and they deserved to win. They found a way to win at the end, and I'm happy for them. But like Dee says, I'm still proud to be an Auburn Tiger."

Ford on how he knew Winston was "rattled:"

"He started holding the ball. He started second guessing his decisions, and that's exactly what I knew -- at the end of the day, he's a freshman, and I think tonight we kind of exposed that, and we just wasn't able to finish in that last drive. Very early, I saw that he was a little hesitant."

Mason on whether he had made a decision on whether to enter the NFL Draft:

"Emotions are everywhere right now. That's not really what's going through my head right now. Right now I just feel like I let the whole Auburn family down by not finishing. That decision will probably come later on, but right now I'm not thinking of that."

Mason on why he felt he "let the Auburn family down:"

"Because we told them we'd have the biggest turnaround in college football, and the biggest turnaround would be winning that crystal ball. We owed them that because of the season last year. I just want them to know that I gave it all I got, but I still feel like I let them down."

Mason on breaking Bo Jackson's single-season school rushing record:

"It's a blessing to surpass his yards that he put up, but it would be great to do that with holding the crystal ball in the air. But that's just the way it is."

Ford on whether Mason was being too hard on himself:

"Yeah, he is being too hard on himself, but he's a competitor. I don't expect him to be any other way. But that's why we're a team. That's why we're brothers. I'm able to really talk to him. And the Auburn family is going to do the same thing. But yeah, he's down on himself. That's expected. We're competitors. I'm down on myself. But we just can't really show the emotion, and we wanted this thing so bad and it was so close. It's expected."

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