Q&A with Richetti Jones

Richetti Jones, a senior defensive end from Dallas, tallied 4.5 sacks for the Cowboys last year and is expected to be a key player for Bill Young's defense in 2011. Jones took time on Saturday to sit down with Go Pokes for a Q&A session.

How excited are you to be back playing football again?

"Oh I'm excited, it's time. I've been waiting for this all year, it's my last year and I'm ready to lay it all out there on the field."

What do you expect out of yourself now that you're a senior?

"Everything. I'm expecting everything from myself. Just to win every game, to give 100 percent, just to give my teammates and my coaches everything I have to offer."

The defensive line is facing some doubters nationally because of a lack of experience and depth, primarily on the interior, what have you seen out of your fellow linemen so far?

"Those guys are going to be fine, that's why we're in camp right now, just to get them comfortable, get them situated and get them ready to roll on Saturdays. People are always going to speculate and say, ‘well, I don't know about this,' or ‘I don't know about that,' but what we accomplished last year shows that anything is possible. Maybe people don't expect much from out D-tackles right now, but not very many people expected much out of our entire team last year and we all saw how that turned out."

What do you miss the most about football during the offseason?

"Oh man, it's gotta be the games. I just miss the whole process of it; the whole routine of getting ready, doing what you've gotta do on certain days leading up to it, and running out of that tunnel on Saturday's and putting all that preparation to work."

I know you all don't like to talk about rankings, but entering the season ranked eighth nationally versus the slight you all received last year. You all had that chip on your shoulder to prove everybody wrong then, but now with people expecting a lot out of you, how does that affect your mentality in fall practice if at all?

"We really don't try to look at rankings too much. Last year, everybody counted us out and didn't expect anything. We turned that into the best season in school history. When it comes to rankings and stuff, we just don't care because we all saw how wrong it was this time last year. They're fair-weathered friends. One day they're with us, one day they're not. I really don't care what they have to say. We're just worried about Oklahoma State and winning games. The only number next to our name that means anything is in the win column."

Does the way you all performed last season motivate you all to do whatever it takes to make sure that type of season happens again?

"We're highly motivated. We're ready to do it. Especially for us seniors, this is our last year. We don't want to be known as the class that let us fall off. We want to be known that broke the record for wins again and brought this university its first national championship. "

In your career at OSU you've had to fight through numerous injuries, most notably the hip injury you suffered coming out of high school, how do you feel now physically?

"I feel great; I feel like I'm in the best shape of my life and I feel like I'm going to have a great year for my team. I feel like I felt in high school, I feel wonderful. I'm ready to roll."

How great is it to finally feel the way you felt back in high school?

"It's a blessing from God because I know it's all because of Him. You know, a lot of people counted me out. After I broke my hip, a lot of people thought I was just going to be a regular guy who looked good in high school but was never going to be able to bounce back. I feel that my faith and my hand work has helped me see it through and now I'm ready to have the best year of my life and be better than I've ever been before."

New uniforms, what do you think?

"I love them. It's great to have a change in the uniforms but now there's a little pressure to play how we look because we look good. You know how you feel when you step out of a new car in a new outfit? You feel ready to take on the world. That's how I feel about these uniforms."

Are there any games you have circled on your calendar right now or is all of your focus on Louisiana-Lafayette?

"We really do have to just take it one game at a time. My attitude is that you have to take it one game at a time because whatever team it is that you're facing that week is standing in the way of us getting to our destiny. Our destiny is a national championship."

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