10/29 Football Notebook

Rich Rodriguez met with the media on Wednesday and discussed playing at the Rose Bowl, Pac-12 reform, and more. Read on for all the latest.

  • With Jarvis McCall questionable to play on Saturday, it is possible that Cam Denson will be getting his first career start at corner.

    "They say about halfway through the season a freshman is not a freshman, but they are a little bit unless you have played quite a bit," Rich Rodriguez said. "He has been playing more recently. He has had a good week of practice from what I’ve seen and if he is pressed into duty and has to play a whole lot of plays, he will compete."

  • There are numerous factors that go into recruiting, but winning is one of the major ones that can help a team.

    "It helps a great bit," Rodriguez said. "It’s funny because most of the commitments nowadays are before the season starts and most recruits, not all of them, but most recruits want to go where they think they are going to have success and go to bowl games and enjoy winning.

    "That is why it is important I think the last couple years that even though we didn’t win big, we won enough to show there was hope and we had a chance to keep building and our goal to be the best program in America is still there."

  • The Pac-12 passed a reform this week and the biggest motion involved is that athletes will now get guaranteed four-year scholarships.

    "I saw it coming," Rodriguez said. "I think it is going to come amongst all of the power five conferences and I think it is good for the student athletes. They say you have the four year scholarship, but you really did anyway.

    "The language said it had to be one year renewable, but I don’t know too many people that took a scholarship away unless the guy did something stupid academically or trouble with the law or something like that.

    "What’s going to change is when you give them some extra money for cost of attendance and those kind of things, which is probably coming down the road pretty quickly."

  • Rodriguez recalls his first trip to the Rose Bowl two years ago, but it is not a fond memory because of a 66-10 loss.

    "It was my first time there, so it was unique and I thought it was a pretty neat venue, but then the game started and we played so poorly that it was miserable," he said.

    "It was a miserable experience. It was disappointing. Not that they beat us because they were clearly better than us, but we played so poorly in every phase and I didn’t think we gave them not just our best effort, but our best team that time and it’s been bothering me for two years"

  • Although he generally tries to treat every game the same, Rodriguez admits that this week has a different feel to it among the players.

    "Because we have so many guys from California, this game maybe has a little added importance," he said. "You would like to think they are all important, but there are a lot of guys on this team from California and there are probably some of them that weren’t recruited by UCLA and so it is important.

    "They will probably have more family that can come watch them play than maybe any other game they have. I do sense a heightened purpose among several of them this week."


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