USC Head Coach Pete Carroll.
On USC and Michigan both wanting to be in the National Championship game instead of the Rose Bowl:
"Both teams are in a similar situation."
"Who has the edge going into the game? It couldn't be more equal."
"It's the perfect match-up."
"We positioned ourselves, we were right at that precipice, but we didn't do it."
By the way, Coach Carr would not bit on a similar question, saying, "If you can't be excited about the Rose Bowl, Southern Cal, and representing the Big Ten in the Rose Bowl, the greatest tradition in college football ..."
Pete Carroll on the status of the USC running game:
"It's hard to tell. We didn't have continuity during the year."
"We're 'okay' -- we're not in the 'thrown to the Wolves' catagory ... we're in the middle, not at the high end, not as low as we were midseason."
Pete Carroll comparing Michigan this season to 3 years ago:
"Top to bottom they are better than two years ago."
"Up front on defense they are better."
"Offensively they are similar -- you couldn't be better than 3 years ago, they rolled through teams that year offensively and they did this year."
"The difference is the defense."
Is the U-M defense better than UCLA's?
"... this is the best team we've played this year, clearly."
Carroll comparing the Michigan vs. USC programs.
"At Michigan you had Bo Schembechler there for many many year, and he was such a strong figure that you've had his disciples at the hed of the program ever since, continuing that tradition."
"That hasn't happened at USC. I don't have USC ties, except that I'm a California kid and grew up rooting for USC."
Carroll on Taylor Mays:
"I've known his dad for years -- I coached him when he came to the Vikings from the Cardinals."
Coach Carr on this game vs. the U-M/USC game three years ago:
"We're different offensively in what we are trying to do than we were three years ago."
More from Coach Carr tomorrow.
Sat. Presser: Carroll and Carr on the Game
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