Q&A with Ron Collins

Colorado defensive coordinator Ron Collins spoke to members of the media recently on his general philosophy about defense, how much blitzing will be part of the CU scheme and some differences between WAC and Big 12 players.

Q: What kind of defense will you run, schematically? Basic 4-3 kind of thing?
We're going to be very multiple. I think one thing we've done a very good job of in the past is getting a lot of guys on the field, and finding out what guys' strengths are. We'll try to get them on the field in the right situations.

But we'll start out in a 4-3 front and kind of go from there. You're going to see a lot of guys on the field.

Q: What type of player do you look for?
We're looking for speed. That's going to be the No. 1 thing, can the guy run? Is he physical out there on the field, and does he have ball skills?

We've had some very good players in the past who haven't necessarily been 6-4 or 6-5, but who could definitely play some ball.

Q: Do you see a big difference between WAC players and players that play in the Big 12? Is there a talent difference there?
There is a talent difference there, definitely.

Q: How so?
More size, probably, than speed. I thought we had very good team speed at Boise State. Maybe overall in the league, the team speed is going to be greater, but in our conference, we had a lot of speed guys.

I think the size is going to be a little bit different overall week in and week out.

Q: In a nutshell what is your defensive philosophy, besides not letting them score?
We want to stop the run and force teams to throw the ball. And then, really more so than keeping teams from scoring, we want to establish a defense that scores ourselves. We want guys to create turnovers and get the opportunity to score.

If you look over our past (at Boise) we've done that quite well.

Q: What's your philosophy on pressure?
We've always brought a lot of pressure in a lot of different ways. We try to do it at the right times, but we'll pressure the running game, we'll pressure the passing game. Last year we had over 36 sacks at Boise State. We will bring pressure.

Q: Have you seen anything from players in the Big 12 like Adrian Peterson at Oklahoma, that will make you, maybe not change, but try new things?
I haven't been able to sit down and study the league yet, but I know there's a lot of great players. I know the quarterbacks are very involved in the offenses in terms of running the ball. Guys like Vince Young. But our deal is to try and find the things that other teams do well and stop it.

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