UAB Head Coach Bill Clark
This is your first year back and you’re coming to the Bahamas Bowl. What was it like flying in and driving over to the resort?
“I’ve been lucky enough to be here before and know exactly how well they’re going to treat us. The Bahamas Bowl crew, what a great job the Bahamian government, and how everybody is going to treat us. My players on the other hand had not, so there was a lot of hollering and hooping. They’re just really excited. There was a lot of work went into bringing this thing back, for those guys and these coaches to get rewarded in this way, it really couldn’t get much better.”
What was the overall feeling amongst the team when you told them they were headed to the Bahamas?
“It was a cool deal. I told them the day before after we finished up, got that eighth win, that we had a special announcement, so we took them to a basketball game and it was announced up on the jumbotron.
Marty Smith, a buddy of mine with ESPN, made a good announcement. They went nuts. It was great.”
The reason you’re here is for the football game, how do you balance having a good time with getting ready for the game?
“I think that’s one of the things we’ve talked a lot about, as I’m sure they have. We want to get up, have a normal routine in the morning, practice in the morning, get through about lunch, then we’ll give them some downtime, have a couple events at night. We want them to enjoy it. This is historic for them. They are still young guys, we want them to have a good time, but at the same time, know we have a ball game on Friday.”
What has been the feeling around Birmingham knowing UAB was coming here?
“It’s been a lot of excitement. I know our fans wanted to get to the game, I think we’re going to have a huge contingent. I know people are even coming over on a cruise. Our fans really turned out, we led our conference in attendance by five or six thousand. We think we’ll have a great group of UAB supporters here.”
Redshirt Senior Linebacker Shaq Jones
On the team arriving in the Bahamas and reaction to Atlantis…
“This is my first time being here, its a beautiful place. Warm weather. Its cold back in Alabama so we can relax and take our coats off now.”
On the reaction to learning UAB was coming to the Bahamas…
“Vacation. Pure excitement. A lot of guys have never been here and for some, probably won’t ever get the chance to come back, so just being able to enjoy it.”
What are your thoughts on coming and what are you looking forward to?
“One thing I’m looking forward to is swimming with dolphins. I haven’t done that before. I’ve seen dolphins a few times but actually getting to swim with them will be something unique for me, so I’m looking forward to that.”
Redshirt Junior Safety Jordan Petty
Talk a little about your expectations on and off the field this week.
“Definitely to get a win. We came to play a football game. We’re here because we won games and we want to keep that streak going. But we also want to relax, look back and be able to reflect on what an awesome season we’ve had.”
There are a lot of activities planned for throughout the week. What are you most looking forward to?
“The jet skis! If I can get on a jet ski, I’m definitely going to hop on that. I know a bunch of the Defensive Backs, we’ve been talking about that for a while. Just being around your brothers and your family, and taking in everything the resort has to offer.”
When you first found out you were coming to the Bahamas, what was your reaction?
“It was like a victory. It was an achievement. We had our eyes set on something big and we knew we could accomplish a goal the first year back. To come to the Bahamas to end it, its really sweet.”