Opponent's View: KSU DE Ryan Mueller

Kansas State defensive end Ryan Mueller previews his squad's upcoming Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl match-up with Michigan.

QUESTION:  What do you pinpoint on for this offense?
Ryan Mueller:  It's hard to pinpoint an exact game.  I know Michigan is a tough football team, they work hard.  I see some plays that are great plays, try to picture myself in that situation thinking, that would be pretty tough to handle.  Then I see some plays that are bad plays and it's, Oh, something to take advantage of.
Just going to have to make more good plays than bad plays.

QUESTION:  When did you think that Shane would be the starter?  They made it official today.
RYAN MUELLER:  Today (laughter).  Yeah, today, I guess.

QUESTION:  When you hear it's a freshman, is there a small part that relishes this?
RYAN MUELLER:  If anything, it's disappointing to me.  I want to go against the best.  I want to go against the best players that they have. Obviously their best player they have right now is potentially Shane Morris.  Just going to have to prepare and expect him to be great and expect him to have the game of his life, expect that from myself and my teammates.  Hopefully everything will work out.

QUESTION:  People talk about the star system.  What do you make of it?
RYAN MUELLER:  Nothing.  I think it's a joke.  I believe that there's some talented guys, and it's obvious to point out who the elite college football players are coming out of high school.  But I think there's a lot of guys who get overlooked. There's a lot of guys on my team, no stars or half stars, that have helped out our team tremendously.  B.J. Finney is a guy that comes to mind, who will probably be a four-year starter for us.  He wasn't on anybody's radar coming out of high school. But that's just a reflection of K State.  We give guys an opportunity who have big hearts and have great work ethics.  K State gives them that platform and that opportunity to shine.

QUESTION:  A lot of people are talking about Michigan State, that they're similar, they don't get the big-star players.  They're guys with chips and are always hungry.  Do you think there's something to that?
RYAN MUELLER:  It's hard for me to speak about that.  I'm not real familiar.

QUESTION:  You're talking about Kansas State has a lot of guys without a large number of stars.
RYAN MUELLER:  We're competing against Oklahoma, we're competing against Texas, Oklahoma State, Baylor.  We're competing against those schools for scholarship guys.  It's extremely competitive.  It's said that K State gets the leftovers.  We groom them and improve their work ethics to compete against those teams.
We've done pretty well for ourselves.

QUESTION:  Are you going to be up against Taylor?
RYAN MUELLER:  Definitely.

QUESTION:  Talk about that situation.  What kind of motivates you going into that type of matchup?
RYAN MUELLER:  All it does is presents an opportunity for me to do my job and execute.  Hopefully I can make a play for my defense.  That's about it. To me, when the lights come on Saturday night, I picture everybody is the same, they just got different jerseys on.  All the accolades, all that stuff goes out the window, doesn't matter.  It just presents an opportunity for me to be there, make a play, or get beat.
Hopefully I make more good plays than bad plays.

QUESTION:  Have you studied him quite a bit, though?
RYAN MUELLER:  Yeah.  I've studied everybody.

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