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November 17, 2013

McGee fighting to keep Blazers spirits up

The UAB Blazers dropped to 2-8 after a 63-14 loss at East Carolina on Saturday.

You might think that the UAB fan base would be yelling for a coaching change after another disastrous loss.

The Blazers have lost four in a row and have been outscored 195-80 during this latest losing streak.

But there doesn't seem to be any outcry for a new head coach. Instead, the talk is about recruiting more players, especially defensive players.

UAB coach Garrick McGee has got to be at his wits end to try and figure out how to turn this thing around. He even changed defensive coordinators and yet in the three games since the change the Blazers have lost three games and given up 143 points in the process.

Saturday the Blazers gave up 36 first downs and 625 yards of total offense.

Offensively, the Blazers have been good enough to win some of the games.

"Well I think you were there so you saw us turn the ball over on a simple handoff to Jordan (Howard)," McGee said. "Saw us bounce a screen-play off of someone's helmet in the red zone. You saw us throw a ball to the sideline and we didn't have our guys set up and he took off down the field."

McGee insists he's not down on the offense, but the execution.

"I was more frustrated with our play making abilities," he said.

The past two weeks have been particularly hard on the Blazers having lost to Marshall 56-14 and East Carolina 63-14.

"I don't spend any time thinking about that," the UAB coach said. "I really just spend time thinking about our guys and spend time thinking about when you drive the ball down the field and you have it on the 13-yard line in a 21-7 game and you've got a play that is going to walk around the end zone for a touchdown and you fumble the exchange, those are the things I spend time thinking about."

It's his duty, however, to try and keep the Blazers' spirits from bottoming out.

"First of all, I talk to them with the door closed because a lot that you talk to your team about is between you and your team," he said. "I'm responsible for protecting them and not letting everyone know what I think of every individual, but moving forward.

"I do like our competitive spirit in the first half of that game. I thought defensively we played with more energy and more intensity against a very fine offense and the top offense in the league. I thought we did hit the quarterback and played tight man coverage.

"There are a lot of things that I am positive about, but we have to make plays. We cannot just let them throw fades down the field and don't really jump and try to break them up and when our guys are running down the field and not make the plays when we have open field tackles and we need to make play," said McGee.


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