August 30, 2010

Monday press conference: A new beginning

"Big concern of ours is stopping that offense and of course trying to move the ball against there defense. They are not real complicated defensively but they are a very sound, fundamentally well coached team."

how it will be getting a game under belt

"It'll be a tremendous relief. It's been so exciting and fun going out there every day and watching our coaches coach and our players practice. The tempo's gotten better everyday and of course, we've had some bad situations that we have came back and corrected. It's been a lot of though and of course, everyone asks me how you're going to do, what you're going to do, and I don't know until I get out there. I've been going out on the field for long time but I've never had that sole responsibility that you've got to make the call, so that's going to be a lot of fun. I've got very good coaches around me that will help me with those decisions, I'm looking forward to it."

Warren Norman

"He didn't have much swelling today which is a great sign. Warren says he's going to be ready and that's kind of what I got by. Of course we'll have our people have their say in it, but Warren says he's going to be ready."

comparing Persa to Kafka

"He may be a little more athletic. Throwing the ball is still maybe a question mark but I think they'll have that answered and ready to go. I haven't watched a great deal to compare, but that's what I've been told. Our defensive people feel pretty good about. It's hard to create that same situation in practice obviously, but we're trying. Our numbers dictate what we can or can't do in practice and our numbers have basically made us go best on best against each other when we prepare, and that's a good thing too."

offensive line

"It's limit some of what we can do, but we have 7-8 guys that we feel like we can count on. They have the knowledge to maybe do a few wrinkles that we haven't done [in the past]. We started working on them during the spring and got a little bit of work at it, but some of it will have to be basic, particular in long yardage situation, probably."

Zac Stacy's health

"He won't be 100-percent but I think he'll give us a boost. You know, none of them will be quite 100-percent, even Kennard. He's not where he started camp yet because of a hamstring. You're always a little bit weiry until you turn it loose. We expect Tate to play. He got a new X-ray today and it looked good. He's doing well, he's adjusted well. The main thing is that he's got to make sure he has his orthotic, he's taped, everything. He's done a lot better with that."

"It ended up being an easy choice because of injuries and everything that usually sorts itself out. His experience is better in this system than the other guys. Coach Kiser felt that Jared Funk was nipping at his heels but as you start game planning and the speed of the game increases, decision making becomes critical and that's where Larry won out in the end. Of course, Jordan didn't really get to show us his skills because of a hurt shoulder but hopefully he'll have an opportunity to continue to improve and work his way up the ladder there."

left tackle

"Wesley is mature beyond his years. I've been very fortunate to coach a lot of smart players. I'm not talking about reading, writing and arithmetic, I've had a bunch of them. I've got doctors and lawyers and all of that stuff that couldn't break down a football play if their life depended on it, but they good surgeons and doctors and all that stuff. Wesley had an advantage by being down the street and come over to watch a lot of our practices. He kind of knew what was going on. He'd come out and watch us practice several times a week after his season was over, after he made his choice.

"He really amazed me, he knew and he knows exactly what to do. You don't have to tell him but one time and that made it easier for him to play. We could've played him last year quite frankly. We dressed him out, took him everywhere. That's how mature he is.

"Physically, he's put on 40 pounds but in layman's terms I'd try to describe him as a guy that will fight a chainsaw with it running wide open. That's just kind of how tough he is."


"They're more experienced, they've worked harder, gotten bigger and stronger. Everyone of them's added weight and worked on their speed. Last year, we had some unusual things happen before the season started and I'm not sure, you know as a player you prepare for your role. I think going in, maybe some of them might have thought their role wouldn't be too much. Now they know what we are depending on, that we would like to throw the football. They've done a tremendous job.

"For example, out of the 200 something snaps the other day, the ball was on the ground five times. That's a drop pass, a bad throw, a over throw, fumbled ball, that was encouraging. I think that was the first time that's happened since we've been here. This was everything, one-on-one passes, everything. Some of it was just warming up, but they didn't know that we took count of everything, all of the passes and balls caught. It was pretty neat. It had gone down from three days before when we had 29. So we're making progress in that regard.

"We've also got a couple of freshmen added to this ground that you're going to see play too on Saturday. We've got quite a few freshmen. I'm think possibly 14 out of this class you will probably see on the field. It's a very good class. They have size, strength and maturity that can handle it."

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