Jarvis Jones: It's been a great run. We started at the bottom of the polls. Everybody was counting us out early with the two losses to Florida State and South Carolina. But we had our composure. We stayed together as a unit. We locked in, and we believed in each other. We just kept gelling. It's been a great run. We've had some great things happen for us. We had a lot of players step up, coaches step up, and everybody kept faith and just locked in, and things have been going great.
Q. Hey, Jarvis, LSU's got four running backs from 205 to about 225 and a big quarterback in Jordan Jefferson too. How do you feel about the challenge of stopping those guys and locking up on them and maybe slowing down the LSU running game this Saturday?
JARVIS JONES: We're physical, just like they are. I believe we've just got to penetrate, get on the ball, make plays. When we get our hand on them, we've just got to bring it to the ground no matter what.
Q. Jarvis, going back to LSU's running backs, just how detrimental to the defense can it be when they can throw out three or four guys and keep churning and churning out yards and wearing down defenses like that?
JARVIS JONES: I mean, it's big. They're pretty deep at running back. But it's a challenge for us as a defense. You always want to be challenged, and you want to step up, and you want to accomplish those challenges. So it's going to be a big day for us. We're looking forward to it. We know they've got a lot of great players over on their side of the ball.
We've just got to become a student of the game, just keep doing what we've been doing. Find their formation, do the things that we do best, and disrupt offenses, get to the quarterback, hit running backs behind the line of scrimmage, and get the ball out.
Q. And also, a lot has been made of how Coach Richt has handled this season, but how much did the seniors and the veterans help you guys out to bring you back up after the 0 2 start?
JARVIS JONES: I think our seniors were a big part of it. This day last year, this day last time around, they really didn't want their last time here at the University of Georgia go out like it started, like most people thought it was going to be.
So they're the reason why we kept our faith. We gelled closer together, and we just kept believing in each other. Every day, they were like just believe, just come out here and work hard, and we control our own destiny. Every day that's what we did.
Q. Jarvis, I wanted to ask you about you had a year away from football last year what you learned about your game and what you've been able to incorporate into it this year.
JARVIS JONES: What I learned about my game was just different techniques. Just watching a lot of different players play, coming here to the SEC and looking at the speed of the game, looking at how athletic people are, just different things I can bring to my game to help me be a better player like using my hands, becoming a better student of the game, finding tendencies, formation, things that can help me play better.
Definitely just learning how to scheme ourselves out of the defensive playbook.
Q. J.J., just wondering about LSU gets a lot of reputation for their defense being dominant. Are you guys eager on any level you're a pretty good defense yourself for kind of showing that you can play at that level as well?
JARVIS JONES: I mean, everybody praises LSU defense, but I think I know we've got a pretty good defense. We're not cocky at all. We're just going to play. We do our job and get out on the field. We like having fun. We love playing football. We're aggressive. We play just as well as them. A lot of people don't give us credit of how they play and how we play. I think we play two different styles. I think our defense is just as good as theirs if not better.
Q. I wondered how many times during the season, especially now that you guys are going to play for the SEC Championship, have you sort of thought back to how it all started for you. Starting at SC, sitting the year out, all the things you had to go through, just sort of thinking back, was it all worth it?
JARVIS JONES: All that stuff is kind of like used for motivation. Being at SC, not being able to play any more, it was a big dropoff for me. It was kind of crazy not being there to play football no more. Now that I've got the opportunity, I take advantage of it every time I step on the field, practice or in the game. I try to leave everything I've got. I try to respect the game. They say, if you don't respect the game, the game don't respect you. Every opportunity I get, I try to make something of it.
Q. I remember you told me back in August when we were talking that you were glad the Georgia fans had accepted you back, so to speak. Now that you've gone through a season and played at the level you have, would you say they're more than accepted you back, that they're glad to have you back?
JARVIS JONES: I think they love me. I really care about the University of Georgia, the people here. I really think they care about me. Everybody is showing me love. Everybody speaks to me. I do the same. Even on campus, I speak to all the students. I met some girls the other day, and they couldn't believe really I was a football player because we were just having a conversation. They really care about me here. I'm thankful for it.
Q. We were already kind of rolling on defense when Alec Ogletree came back from his injury. What does he bring to your defense?
JARVIS JONES: Alec brings the energy. He's a big hitter, sideline to sideline type player. He brings the energy to our defense. Alec is just passionate. He loves the game. He's a complete back. He can cover. He plays safety. He can come up and make big plays. He's smart. It just makes our defense much more better having him in there.
Q. Jarvis, what has the buzz been like around campus today? How much does LSU being ranked No. 1 add kind of to the excitement in this game?
JARVIS JONES: Today has been kind of dead. It's raining pretty bad. It's been kind of light. But it's a pretty big game. Everybody knows what's at stake. I think we're kind of underdogs right now, but everybody here is focused. We're focused, and we're not trying to change anything. We've been on the road lately, so we're just trying to keep our focus and do what we've been doing the best way we can and come into the game ready.
Q. I know, of course, you played your first game for Georgia in the Dome. Did you also play there before in high school? Did you have any games there?
JARVIS JONES: I played there twice in high school.
Q. What did the team learn maybe from that first game in the Dome that might be beneficial this week?
JARVIS JONES: For the team? I don't know, I think it's pretty loud. It's a different atmosphere. There's a lot more energy than playing at home more. It's just different all the way around. The fans are right on top of you. Just the energy and everything that the whole thing brings with it, just being there playing in the Dome. I can't explain it. It's so different.
Q. Jarvis, Les Miles mentioned yesterday recruiting you, I guess, out of high school. What do you remember about that? Did you ever take a visit there? Did you ever meet with him and their coaches?
JARVIS JONES: Yes, I've been to LSU quite a few times. Coach Miles is a great guy, loves football, loves his players, just loves having great players. We spent quite a bit of time to together talking when I was down there, just talking football and life, just going over stuff. Coach Miles is a great guy.
Q. Do you remember why you just kind of didn't end up going there?
JARVIS JONES: I really don't know. Coming out of high school, Coach Norton, when I decided to go to USC, Coach Norton was one of the best linebacker coaches at the time I came out.