Heisman Candidate Matt Ryan's PC

This afternoon Heisman candidate and signal caller for the 2nd ranked Boston College Eagles, Matt Ryan, spoke to the media via teleconference. NoleDigest listened in as he talked about if they feel they have to prove themselves, the success the Boston area has had with their sports teams this year, and among other things his thoughts on Florida State's defense.

On feeling if they must prove they are as good as their ranking and what people think of them:

MR: We aren't too worried about what people think of us. We're just trying to go out there and win our games each week. Going into the game this past Thursday we were going into a tough road game against a tough team in a tough place to play. If anything we've been using the doubt as an advantage to our team to show we are a good team.

On the Heisman talk:

MR: It's about playing well and winning. I haven't really thought too much about so far to be honest with you. I am really worried about just going out each week and winning the games we play. I will say that it is an honor to be mentioned with the great players in college this year and where that puts me in terms of what people think of me as a player. If we can continue to play well and win, who knows what'll happen. But if it doesn't, as long as we win I will be happy.

On the comparison of his game winning throw against Virginia Tech to the throw Doug Flutie made against the Hurricanes the year he won the award:

MR: Doug's play was phenomenal and I don't think it can be compared to that. He pretty much made Boston College popular. I don't think of myself in that light. I have the benefit of being apart of a great team with great players that all contribute to us winning games. The players on my team were apart of that play. I don't feel it's a fair comparison those plays, though.

On the entire Boston area sports scene and if they're under the radar:

MR: It's a goof time to be a sports fan in Boston. The Red Sox just won the World Series, Tom Brady and the Patriots are playing lights out, the Celtics are starting up soon and they have the Big 3 and even the Bruins have played well so far. It's a good time to be apart of the sports scene right now and I hope everyone can keep it going. Being under the radar a little bit has helped us keep our focus on the tasks at hand. We've been focused on our own business and winning each week. It's important that we stay focused and not worry about what is happening around us. I will say that we've been getting more exposure in this area lately. We have great support from the Boston area people and the media is starting to pay more attention to us. It's just fun to be apart of this.

On Virginia Tech's defense:

MR: That defense is extremely tough to go against and it's tough to go in and have success. Budd Foster is one of the best defensive coaches in the country and his schemes are great. They did a fantastic job against us this past week, especially their corners Brandon Flowers and Macho Harris. They did a good job pressing our receivers and making it hard for them to get open. That defense has a lot of playmakers with Vince Hall moving sideline to sideline, so it's tough to single out a player or two that plays well on that team.

On Boston College being the only team to beat Virginia Tech on Thursday night games on ESPN:

MR: I really don't know what it is. We've beaten them three times now on Thursdays. We know it's always going to be tough playing them and that you've got to play 60 minutes. This past week we just grinded along and worked at it and knew things would turn around for us. It happened late in the game, but we were able to make some plays and make things happen to get a win there.

On being the favorite for ACC Player of the Year for football and his high school teammate Sean Singletary, the point guard at Virginia, being a front-runner for Player of the Year in basketball:

MR: It is great to be considered for all of these awards and all, but like I've said we just have to continue to win each week. As for Sean, he was an awesome wide receiver and defensive back in high school. I think he had a very bright future in football had he stuck to it. He is a great competitor and has a will to win. I know their team is looking good this year and I've paid some attention to what he's done in college. I will watch him as much as I can this year.

On the accident that left his older brother crippled:

MR: After that accident it kind of changed my whole perspective on things and my outlook on life. It's tough to deal with the questions why did I make it out and not my brother. But, he is an inspiration to me. He is always smiling and happy and he never shows how hard it is for him or that he's down. Whenever things aren't going well for me I just think of him and realize that it's not that bad. Things like this give us a perspective on what is important and what's not. From that time on my whole life has changed.

On the 2005 game versus FSU and what they bring to the table:

MR: The game in 2005 was my first action that year and in an ACC game. That was a tough and frustrating loss for us. We didn't do enough to win that game, but FSU did. I've played two times now against them and they are a very tough team to play. They have a great defense that is fast and we know what they are about and what they have the potential to do. As a quarterback and a team you have to respect that and prepare for it. We have to be ready.

On playing for the ACC Championship:

MR: We have a good team this year. We have a good shot as any to get there and get it done. We've always played hard like we are doing now, but things haven't gone our way the last couple years. It's about preparation and winning. We have worked hard since the summer to get this done. Right now we are 8-0 and we have done very well to get where we are at. We have another month left against some tough teams so we have a lot of playing to do to get there.

On calling in own plays:

MR: We prepare during the week on what plays we are going to be running. I do it especially in the no huddle. Against Virginia Tech it was very frustrating because we couldn't get things going. So at times we had to huddle up and get the plays from Steve Logan (the offensive coordinator). He did a good job placing people in the right positions to make the plays we needed to win the game. Even though this is my first year in this offense, I worked very hard in the off-season with the receiver and backs getting this offense down and understanding it. It is a great responsibility calling my own plays and I really enjoy playing for these coaches and the system they have brought here.

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