Gophers football coach Jerry Kill sounded confident about his team's preparation at the annual Citrus Bowl head coaches news conference Thursday.

"We've had excellent practices. [Tuesday], we were very sharp," said Kill, sitting next to the trophy topped by a bowl of oranges. "So we feel good going in. Now that doesn't guarantee you anything, but it's a lot different than it was a year ago [at the Texas Bowl], I can tell you that."

This week, some of the Gophers admitted they lacked focus last December in Houston. The coach sees a different mentality this time around.

"The kids bounced around [Orlando] a little bit. I think they've had a good time, but when we work, it's different," Kill said. "So I'm excited about watching them play. As a coaching staff, we feel very comfortable. We've got a good plan, we've just got to go execute it. So we'll see."

Joe Christensen