Post-Spring Game Q&A with Coach Bray

Following Saturday's spring game, Devils Digest sat down with ASU's defensive coordinator Craig Bray to talk about his group's performance throughout spring practice.

Q: How do you think the defense played today?

A: "They played hard and ran around. They did ok. We just played base defense. We didn't pressure or blitz. I'll know more when I look at the film."

Q: Coach, how would you sum up the overall performance on defense in the spring?

A: "We have to have our young kids progress better than they are progressing. Our older kids got better. Our younger kids have a ways to go. So kind of like every spring, you are never as good as you hoped."

Q: What were your goals going into spring and have all of them been accomplished?

A: "To become a little more diversified. Create more pressures and bring the young kids along so we can find out who can play for us. We're getting there."

Q: Do feel that the defense's fine play from last season carried over into the spring?

A: "Yes. I feel like we have a little bit of a pride factor. Their expectations are high, but they are never as high as mine are."

Q: The defensive line should have a much different look in fall camp when a handful of newcomers arrive. Having said that, were you pleased with the group in the spring?

A: "I'm pleased with our defensive ends. I'm pleased with Jamarr Robinson who we moved from line backer to defensive end. He has a chance to be really good. Still concerned about our defensive tackle position, but we have some help coming in the fall."

Q: Can you talk about the play of walk-on defensive tackle David Bertrand?

A: "He was probably the biggest surprise of the spring. He did a really good job for a guy that walked on. He's physical and powerful."

Q: You tried a few players at WILL linebacker, but it looks like you settled on Mike Nixon at that spot.

A: "We actually started Mike at the MIKE backer position and then as we went along our young kids weren't coming along. Ryan McFoy who has a year under his belt hasn't made the improvement that we were hoping. I can play Nixon anywhere. He's probably our most valuable guy in regards to that."

Q: Rodney Cox was very consistent at safety. Based on his play last year did you expect him to have a good spring like he did?

A: "He's another one of those guys we didn't think was worth much, but Rodney worked his tail off. His body has changed a lot. Our expectations are that he'll be one of our top leaders out there."

Q: There are still probably questions at cornerback, bur for now it looks like Terell Carr will start opposite Omar Bolden. Can you talk about the play of those two players?

A: "Everything was new for the corners because we hired a new coach and he has brought in new ideas and techniques. If we started today Terell would be that guy, but we'll see how camp goes."

Q: Overall, what areas do you think the defense has really shined in the spring and what areas do you feel they need to improve going into fall camp?

A: "We're not explosive and we're not good blitzers yet. We have to create a more explosive and quicker defense. We've got to get to the point where we can attack better and that is not one of our strengths. The first group did a good job of executing and doing what we asked. It was a good spring, especially the last two weeks."

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