Game balls were given to Mike Barth, Mason Unck, Tommie Townsend, Levi Jones and Ryan Dennard. Dennard will be the fourth captain for the Louisiana-Lafayette game. The scout team players of the week were Jeff Van Lo on offense, Daniel Pryor on defense, and Joey Smith on special teams. Koetter pointed out that Smith has won this award every week.
Koetter thanked the fans, and especially the students for their vocal support of the team against San Jose. He was pleased with fulfilling the assignment of stopping Whitaker, which is one of the best running backs in the country. No one aside from ASU has been able to limit Whitaker to negative yards. Overall, the head coach was very pleased with all aspects of the defense, especially keeping in mind that they were playing seven true and redshirt freshmen.
The ASU head coach liked the physical manner that the team played. It was by far the most physical they played this season, and that helped the ground game. Another positive aspect of the physical offense was the fine job that the WR's did blocking downfield. Koetter also pointed out the special teams, which by far had their best game this season. Kicker Mike Barth booted 6 of his 9kick-offs for touchbacks. The coverage on special teams was also pointed out as being phenomenal.
Practices will be at 3:45 from here out, and this is a move that the coaching staff welcomes. Koetter jokingly said that he was told that October 1st is the magical date where the weather starts cooling off, and therefore the change was made effective that date. Another reason for the change this week, was the thought that the schedule should change during an out of conference game, and not a Pac-10 one. Non-practice schedules will have to be adjusted, and the coaches prefer that those adjustments take place not during conference play. Koetter likes the new schedule that will allow him to fit in more recruiting calls at earlier hours of the night. The first year head coach really liked practicing at night, and isn't rule out going back to that schedule if the weather became too warm.
When asked if the team was looking past Louisiana-Lafayette towards the USC game, Koetter dismissed that. He said that the team has 100% focus on this week's game, and he wants to execute his game plan for this week's opponent. He expects Louisiana-Lafayette to spread out their offense, and go with an empty backfield at times. This is what the defensive coaches have to scheme against. Koetter also mentioned that he expects to face a very stiff pass defense.
As far as getting the tight end involved more on offense, the ASU head coach said that starter Mike Pinkard has come a long way in the last couple of weeks, and as a result he will be more involved in the offense as he improves. The other tight end Frank Maddox has been banged up, and probably hasn't shown yet all he has to offer.
Koetter doesn't mind playing back to back out of conference opponents. He said that everybody on the team is a competitor that wants to play 12 games this year. That can't control who and when they'll play, but they're just excited to gout there and compete as much as they can.
Has the improvement on special teams come at the expense of scaling back the playbook? Koetter did admit so. He mentioned that the defense did scale back, but o lesser degree than special teams did. He mentioned gain that the defense has to switch its focus this week from stopping the run t stopping the pass, because that's the challenge this week's opponent presents to you.
After watching some Pac-10 games this weekend, Koetter is very impressed by UCLA. He also said that the way Stanford is playing it's either they are much better than people gave them credit, or that ASU isn't as bad as people may think since they lost to a great team.
In closing Koetter said that he was very pleased with the offense. He doesn't think that the offense is as complex as people thinks it is. He said with a smile that if he can understand it. Anybody can. He sand the praises of quarterback Jeff Krohn, who according to Koetter is very aware on the field, and knows exactly why every lay on offense succeeded or failed. The head coach that if everyone on the ream was executing like Krohn was, the team would be fine.
Coach Koetter's Press Conf. Notes
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