Q: How is spring going for you and the defensive backs so far?
A: They’re learning, they’re getting better, but we still have a long way to go. It was about being physical out there today. Some of the guys stepped up, some of them didn’t.
Q: The last few years have been rough in the secondary and several different coaches have come in - how do you turnaround that kind of situation.
A: There’s been some great players through here - Derron and Phillip at safety, in the past, Vernon Fox and Cameron Worrell. It’s all about tradition and letting these guys understand the history and the shoes they are following. I think once we get that and we establish the tradition once again we’ll be fine. Right now there’s growing pains through spring. They’re learning a new system and they’re learning how to compete. I’m pleased with the effort so far, I’m pleased with the growth so far, but we know we need to get a lot better.
Q: And what are you doing with the players to make that happen?
A: It’s ground-one teaching. I say we’re back in our 101 classes. Until we can get to our 301 and 401 upper division, we’ve got to stay there. It’s all about building fundamentals and teaching them the game of football.
Q: Is that typical of when you take on a new job or does it have to do with these specific circumstances?
A: It’s tough because you’re there for a reason. You know there is going to be some growth needed and some rebuilding needed. We’re just going through the process and trying to get it sooner rather than later.
Q: Anyone able to stand out to you so far?
A: Right now it's still too early. They’re trying to feel their way around there and trying to compete. The cream always rises to the top so I imagine I’ll start seeing some cream out here pretty soon.
Q: How about the new addition, Matthew Boateng. What did you like in him?
A: He’s very explosive. He can run and he’ll try to hit you. I’m pleased with that. It’s just his overall knowledge of the scheme, which he’s getting better. I’m pleased with his growth so far. It’s just a matter of continuing to develop him.
Q: What’s it like to be back at Fresno State?
A: It feels awesome. It feels great to be home. When you look at the sun, you couldn’t have a better day here in the Valley. It feels awesome. My family is here. This is where I grew up.
Q: What principles do you try to instill in your players?
A: One is the golden rule, treat everyone how you want to be treated. When it comes to football, let’s try to understand the concepts so it’s whole versus part learning. If we understand the whole picture, then we can truly understand our part. That’s how I teach them.
Q: Coach Steinauer has told us about multiple schemes. What does it look like so far out here?
A: We’re still in baby steps. We’re installing parts of the defense and you can see where it’s going to grow to. That’s the main thing for the kids to understand - that this isn’t everything and that the scheme is going to grow. Orlondo does a great job implementing that.
Q: What’s it been like recruiting for Fresno State?
A: Fresno State, just the history of Fresno State. It's always had great players. It’s a matter of getting it back to where it’s supposed to be. I’m fired up about that.
Q: How about the reception you’re getting from high school coaches?
A: Great reception. ‘Hey Fresno, I’ve always wanted to send a kid to Fresno.’ It’s a great reception, it’s just a matter of building those relationships again.
Q: What key attributes do you look for in a recruit?
A: I just want someone that likes to run, loves to hit, and loves the game of football. Once we get that, we’ll put them in the right spot.