What do you think about the class that you came in with? There are a lot of you guys in the two deep already.
We have a group of real talented players with Albert Young and our whole D-Line. In a year, we're going to be graduating all of our seniors. So, right now projected, it's going to be all sophomores on the D-Line.
Are you guys ready for that?
I would certainly hope so. I feel that I am. Coach Aiken has been helping me out a lot. He helps me with school and football. It's not like I'm not going to be prepared.
What do you weight now
Where do you want to be at?
By the end of the season, 245. At the highest, 249, 250.
Is that a comfortable weight for you where you can keep your speed, too?
Yeah. I can get heavier. I just don't want to put on fat and get slow.
What do you guys learn from a guy like Roth?
He's totally explosive. I've learned how he gets on people and gets off people. He;s real quick; fast. You see him on film and in games. He's our fastest D-Lineman. He's explosive. He's 270 with a six-pack. I've learned a lot from him. I'm his backup. He's helped me out a lot in practice.
Is there a cohesiveness with the redshirt freshmen on the D-Line?
Yeah. We're all cool. We all look out for each other. If we see one slacking off, we try to talk to him. We be like, "Hey man, we got to get back to it." If we lose one of us, it's going to hurt the team. It's going to hurt real bad.
What do you think about this weekend going into a hostile environment for the first time?
I really don't know. I haven't really been exposed to that yet. It's going to be learning experience.
What are you doing on the sideline before you get into the D-line rotation maybe in the second or third quarter?
Watching. Paying attention to the game. Asking questions while they're coming off of the field. Asking what the lineman are doing. Asking how they're blocking. What kind of blocks are they getting? What kind of plays are they getting to their side? If they're cutting. If they're chop blocking.
Does it help to get that info before going in?
It helps a lot. You've got to ask those questions. You can't just go into a game expecting to know everything. Even while the game is going on, you've got to ask questions while you're on the sidelines. People coming off of the field know what's going on.
Does it surprise you how much preparation there is coming from high school?
There's a lot of preparation. There's things that I never thought of doing, like watching film as much as we do. We didn't watch nearly as much film in high school. The meetings were never as long. Practice was never as long. We put in some time. And it all pays off.
Tell us what you think about the ASU passing attack this week?
I don't know a lot. Our defense coming off of a big win last weekend faced a tough offense. But ASU kind of come at you with a little different attack; a lot more passing; more experience at quarterback. We saw him last year. He's tough.
We'll probably put some new things in this week just to prevent their prolific passing attack. They'll come ready to play. I know that.
How did you shut them down last year?
We shut down the run early, then they kind of had to resort to just passing the ball. We kind of prevented the deep ball, and they had those little check down routes. We hit the receivers and were physical and I think that kind of got to them.
But, they completed a lot of balls. We happened to be there. They also had to come to Kinnick, which isn't an easy place to play just like it won't be easy for us down there.
Is that the blue print for this week then?
I'm assuming. We're going to see in about two hours. But I'm thinking that's what we'll probably try to do.
What kind of challenge is the first road game of the season?
It's going to be tough, especially going down there in the heat. I know it's a night game, but it's still going to be hot. Any road games are tough, no matter where you're playing, especially in the Big Ten. We're going to treat this like a Big Ten game.
D-LINE COACH RON AIKEN:
What did Norm think of the Iowa State performace?
Norm was pleased. It's always a good conversation. He wasn't too teed off with anything that happened during the ballgame except for the touchdown pass.
How are the nurses over there handling Norm?
Norm, as you know, can be rough at times. But his wife has been there and so have members of his family during the ballgame. So, I think that kind of keeps things settled down.
How do you guys get in there to see him after visiting hours?
The key thing we try to do is sneak in there and ease out real quick.