Stoops: We are desperate for a win

The Cats seem to get teams at the wrong time. Every time a team comes into Arizona Stadium it seems as if they are coming off a big game. This week they get Oregon State and the Beavers looked very good against Washington State. Mike Stoops discussed the Beavers and his ball club with the media.

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Stoops opened the press conference with a few words on the team's tough luck:

"We continually seem to find ways to hurt ourselves in a lot of areas on both sides of the ball and in the kicking game. Our team is playing hard, I think we are physical and we tackled hard all day and punished a lot of their ball carriers and receiver and made them work.

"We have to find ways to quit beating ourselves and worry about ourselves until we worry about opponents. We beat ourselves repeatedly by not executing the way we would like." If we ever do it hopefully we have the opportunity to win."

On Oregon State:

"OSU is playing well again and they bring in another tremendous quarterback, great receiver and they are running the ball better than they have all year. Defensively it is going to be challenging. "They have a great cover guy, they are going to press and man us all over the field and stack the line of scrimmage and force us to throw the ball. If we can't throw the ball any better than we did the other night it will be tough until we find some consistency in our passing game. It really limit us what we can do."

On some of the tough calls against the Wildcats:

"It seems like everything is going against us right now. We are very fragile and it is hard to overcome those types of things happening to us.

"We are playing better at times than it looks. That is the thing that I have to look at and our team looks at. We do a lot of good things during the course of a game. We just are not a very deep football team. Defensively to be out there for 33 minutes make sit very difficult for us. We are not helping each other as a team and playing team game right now. Those are the things that prohibit you from winning."

On what the team has been doing well:

"We continue to run the ball well. Mike (Bell) ran well. We created some seams, pretty good holes all day. I am happy with that. I thought we protected decently throughout the day.

"We are getting opportunities, we have guys open. That is what gets frustrating, the execution needs to get better.

"3-15 (on third down) --that really frustrated you. You are not going to win many games that way.

"We made them work for everything they got. Defensively I thought we were physical and we hit extremely hard. I thought we came up with some big plays."

On the Cats' reputation for being big hitters:

"We are always going to play hard and physical. I think our safeties play very physical football. We need the whole team to play like those guys and fly around."

On Darrell Brooks:

"Darrell has a great combination of range and physical play for a safety. He is one of the better safeties I have ever coached. I have coached a lot of good ones. He is up there with every one of them. His awareness and coachability and instincts set him apart from other players. The game comes easy for him and he takes a lot of pride in the way he plays and prepares. He is a great student of the game. He is developing into one of the premier safeties in all of college football."

On the play of first time starter Richard Kovalcheck:

"On third down plays he rushed and didn't trust his protection and routes. (He) misread a couple of things. A couple of third down plays he could have played better.

"I thought his composure was good most of the night. He messed up a couple of plays here and there, but that is understandable in your first start. He seemed like a guy who could get a lot better through repetition. He shows good toughness and awareness." We have to execute and give him some help around him. We are not helping him much with our perimeter play."

On OSU quarterback Derek Anderson:

"If he gets off to a good start you can anticipate he is going to have a pretty good day. They try to get him off to better starts, and that is what they have done the last two games. They have got him into the flow of the offense and made some throws he feels comfortable in doing. He is very accurate and very strong. I don't know if they have simplified things but he is a very talented and dangerous football player."

On OSU DE Bill Swancutt:

"(He's) Tremendous payer, plays hard. He has great instincts. He plays well. You can tell he plays a long time and you can't fool him."

On injuries to the offensive line:

"It hurts us not having Abramo and Phillips in there. Both those guys out, we can't take a hit like that, no question."

Before the season you said you were against instant replay. Have you changed your mind?

"I have not thought about it. I have had a bunch of other things to really consider.

"Everybody has a job to do and they do it the best way you can. I am disappointed in a lot of the calls but that is how it is. That is the way it goes. You have to accept it for what it is. I don't know what else I can say. All I can do is report the plays. They throw Antoine Cason into the ball and if that is prohibited than...I am always going to stick up for my players and vent my frustration. That is how it is. If we are getting unfairly called than you have to show them and tell them.

"That is out of my hands. I have gotten to the point where I don't even bother any more." "After the season, I don't have time in the day to talk about those types of things."

On the same mistakes happening again and again:

"We catch the ball well in practice. I don't know, I don't' have a good explanation for it. Maybe we don't have enough poise or confidence. That is not winning hurts you." Early on not winning those games wears on you. We had an opportunity to win a couple of close games, it is just how it is. We have to keep practicing and preparing and we have. Schematically there are a lot of good things being down. Our execution for whatever reason does not come through at the right times."

On the team needing a win:

"We are desperate for a win, we are going to prepare. Our kids will be excited for Saturday. It will be a great opportunity. It is a big challenge. We are going to have to play well to have an opportunity to win. I fully expect us to be ready to go and fully prepared and do whatever we have to in order to win it. That is how fragile we are. We are not good enough to overcome some of the mistakes or inconsistent play."

On Lionel Dotson playing out of position:

"It is tough for him. He is only 255. Not being strong or big enough hurts him at times but the kid plays hard and hangs in there and plays well. He is going to be a very good player. He is doing a lot of good things."

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