Stoops: "It will come."

The Cats arestruggling but Mike Stoops is not down. He's openly frustrated, but feels good about the overall health of the program.

Opening Statement:

"It doesn't show we are not making progress in a lot of areas. that is the thing that motivates me and our staff and our players. We believe we are getting better on a daily basis. We have built a solid foundation.

"Our inability to throw the football has been an Achilles heal of ours all year. I knew that was going to be a problem. If we didn't have guys emerge from that group, and we still haven't through three fourths of the season. We still don't have anybody over 20 catches that is a serious issue and something we have to evaluate very hard.

"That has been the biggest frustration throughout the year."

On getting behind early:

"That has been bothersome. I feel we have been well prepared. We have been terrible in the first quarter throughout every single game.

"Guys need to make plays, that is how it is. We create defensive and offense that is set up. We are not ill prepared. I thought it was one of our better game plans on both sides. It is almost like we have to believe and have more confidence in ourselves. That comes from that lack of success in the program.

"We have to realize that our confidence has to get better through our work ethic and through the system longer."

On the importance of a win:

"Getting the first one is the hardest. They see themselves getting better on a daily basis but still not to where they need confidence and mentally to go out and win and pull off an upset."

On Washington:

"I am more worried about us and what we need to do offensive and defensively. They have quality football players and they have recruited well over the years and have quality payers. They have been hurt by a lot of injuries.

"I think their inability to throw the football has hurt them as well. They have been through two quarterbacks just like we have.

"Defensively at times they have shown they can play really well. We have a lot of similarities, where they are at with their coach and players did not matte to me. It is what we do with our players."

On B.J. Dennard: "We are going to work BJ as a receiver and try to get a feel if he has a better opportunity to play and get him on the field. See if he gives us any more of an option at receiver."

On who is to blame for recent struggles:

"Ultimately the responsibility is on me and our coaches, but they (the players) understand when plays are there they need to make. We are a Pac-10 football team, playing in one of the best conferences, there is a responsibility. If we coach a player to do something all week to do it and he does not do it that is the players fault that I not the coaches' fault. We make our players accountable and that is the way it should be."

On the play of Lionel Dotson:

"He does a great job. He is not where he needs to be right now physically. He plays hard and I like his toughness he is young and he is not overwhelmed in there. He is learning. He is not a huge guy but he has not hurt us. It is hard for him to make real physical plays because of his limitation physically. He is a real strong player to where he needs to be. We don't have an impact player there right now."

On the struggles of the defensive line:

"Some of the losses have prohibited the defensive line. (Johnathan) Turner was guy who was coming along just when he got hurt."

"(The loss of Yaniv Barnett and Paul Phillip) really prohibited us from getting more play from our defensive line. Some of those things will get better in time.

"I appreciate what Carlos Williams has done inside. They play more than most people do. You can't push big guys around for more than 60 plays a game, you just don't do it. The speed and strength is where we are physically lacking. We don't have the depth.

"I feel good about those areas down the road. We have some great young players and we are recruiting great layers as we are getting along."

On the play of the linebackers:

"Inconsistent as a whole, like a lot of positions. I am happy with Pat (Howard) and Kirk (Johnson). They have been more consistent than the other guys. Other guys may be quicker and more athletic in some areas but they don't show the consistently or the toughness that Pat and Kirk have. We are going to play with the guys who are the most consistent.

"You can see in runs against Cal, we were out of position all day with our linebackers and it hurt us in the run game. Saturday we were much better position. We controlled the run game better."

On coaching this year:

"It has been very, very difficult, but I had probably higher expectations than anybody. I felt we could do some things. I am disappointed in some areas throughout the year. Again, I feel positive about the direction we are headed. At times our play indicates that. I am excited about being here. It is tough but it is going to make our success feel that much better when it comes. It will come. I am confident of that. I have a lot of confidence in what we do on either side of the ball, or my coaches or the players."

On using junior college players for a quick fix:

"We will look at JC players, anything that will make us better. The JC player has to have a spot where we think he can come in and start. Right now we would not take a jc player for depth. All positions are going to be open after the season."

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