December 19th, 2016 | BAHAMAS BOWL


Eastern Michigan Arrival Quotes – December 19, 2016

General thoughts on arrival in Nassau
“I can’t tell you how happy I am and excited for everybody associated with Eastern Michigan football. Whether they are here experiencing it or not, the excitement of Eastern Michigan football has been great. That brings me joy and we want to just represent Eastern Michigan well while we are here, certainly on the field this Friday.”

On the team’s energy leading up to the Popeyes Bahamas Bowl:

“It has been really good. Guys have been managing finals. We have practiced hard, especially yesterday. Afterwards, there was some giddiness with practice at home being over and getting on a plane. Even the bus ride over, it has been fun.” 

How will your team balance work and play this week?

“We have traveled a lot this year. We travel well when we know what we are traveling for. I tell them that you don’t have to beat your head against the wall three-days ahead of the game when you are eating lunch. When we are doing football, we will be focused on football and when we are not, we will put our feet in the sand and enjoy the place. We have a mature group, who have been focused all year and I do not expect anything different.”

On the team’s knowledge of the Bahamas:

“We hoping to learn a lot. Very few of us have been here before so we are excited to be here and learn all we can.”

On breaking programs bowl-less streak:

“Twenty-nine years is a long time and our guys, badly, want to play well on Friday. There is no question about it. We have had a special year and you just want to finish on a high note.”

On breaking the program’s bowl-less streak:
“It has been awesome. There has been a lot of people that have come to Eastern Michigan but have been unable to achieve that goal. For us to be seniors and get to go out on a high note like this is great. It was our goal to come to a bowl game and win so it is sweet to be part of a class that has a chance to do that.”

On getting to play in the Bahamas:

“It was one degree when we got on the plane this morning and 80 when we landed. It is awesome to get to get to come down here in December, get away from the snow, and play our last game of the season in a tropical place.”

On staying at the Atlantis:

“I am look forward to get to relax a little. I have been here before. I was on a cruise and we stopped here. I just want to relax, take it all in, and enjoy the experience.”

JAKE HURCOMBE, Academic All-MAC, Sr., C
On breaking the program’s bowl-less streak:
“It has been special. We have gone through a lot, especially our senior class. We had lost a teammate (Demarius Reed), who passed away. Just being able to be the class to break the streak. It was a big reason why a lot of us came to Eastern Michigan. Being the ones who finally did it is special.”

On getting away from Michigan and getting to play in the Bahamas:

“It is surreal to go international. A lot of the guys on the team haven’t experienced traveling abroad. Especially playing a football game is something that may never be done for any of us again. It is special and it is going to a fun time.”

On staying at the Atlantis:

“I have seen a couple videos of the giant water slide. The dolphin exhibit seems pretty cool. I know the offensive line will be hanging out on the lazy river for a large portion of our down time. It is going to be a fun week.”

COLE GARDNER, Academic All-MAC, Sr., OL
On getting away from Michigan and getting to play in the Bahamas:
“It was cold when we left. It was different when they opened the plane doors, and you could feel the humidity right away. I’d rather be in the warm than the cold. (The draw bridge) was awesome. Looking over and seeing all the big boats down there. It was a cool experience, something you don’t get to do too often.”

On playing football in the Bahamas:

“Football provides a lot of great opportunities for us. I love those opportunities to give back to the community and to see how people live in other places around the world. There are guys here that haven’t been out of the country before. Having the opportunity to do this is just awesome.”

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