Media Day Brings Out the Teams

Los Angeles – Rose Bowl Media day was held Friday allowing media from around the country to get sound bites, quick quotes and photo opportunities. Many questions were asked and answered. Here is a sampling.

Media was allowed full access to players for 30 minutes for each team on Friday morning. Mark Asper answered questions about his heroic actions that help saved a man's life.

"I was glad that I learned it, glad that I knew how to do it," admitted Asper of the event that has created national headlines. "And, no, I never thought that – I didn't think it was a big deal. I helped a guy out. I wanted to get back to dinner and enjoying the evening with my wife, but I was glad it helped him out and glad that everybody thinks that it's a good thing.

LaMichael James was asked questions about Wisconsin running back Montee Ball. James thinks Ball is one of the best running backs in the country and was very complimentary toward the talented Wisconsin back. Of course James pointed out the obvious when asked if he was worried about Ball.

"Definitely not, replied James to the question if Ball worried him. "I'm not going up against him. I'm going up against their defense and they are going – he is going against our defense. We are on the same side of the ball, so that stuff really doesn't matter to me. Only thing I focus on is our defense."

Many wanted to know about the uniforms, both Oregon's and Wisconsin's. There were a lot of questions about the new helmet. It is shinny but strangely enough when a spokesperson for the Oregon Athletic Department showed it to in a shady area inside the Downtown Marriott where the media conference was held, the helmet seemed less mirror like.

Wisconsin has a new uniform too created by Adidas. Wisconsin Coach Bret Bielema said he loves the "simplicity" of the new uniform.

"I love the uniform," said Bielema of Wisconsin's new duds. "As you guys know, I play a little close to the vest on those type of things, and myself and Coach Alvarez partnered with Adidas and we wanted to bring out some subtle things that ended up being big things for us."

Somebody then asked if the new Wisconsin uniforms made the players look slimmer.

"Well, some guys will want it to," Bielema said with a grin. "I'd love to have a slimming effect. I think the part we wanted to do was incorporate the history and tradition of the Rose Bowl. I think because our colors are red and white, it's so unique to blend in that opportunity. A lot of teams in the world of college football have gone with this star effect or this wow effect, and to me I can't tell you how many times I'm walking through an airport, I'm on the road recruiting, and someone grabs me and said how much they love our uniforms, the simplicity, the cleanness and the tradition of college football that really exists."

Of course there were questions to the coaches about the other team. Bielema spoke of Oregon's speed and tempo. He also felt the Duck defense and special teams are a serious problem if a coach only has week to prepare for.

"There are two things that really jump out," explained Bielema when talking about the Ducks. "First, their offense is such a unique preparation, not just from the standpoint of schematically what they do but also the timing of it, the no huddle, the speed huddle and all that goes into it, and then on the flipside of it, their defense and special teams is very unique. As gifted as they are athletically, the speed and all that goes into it, it would be a very difficult challenge within a game week to get ready for what they're doing.

"They do this 365 days a year every day, and it's really unique to the world of college football," continued Bielema about Oregon. "On the flipside of that, I think we are as well. What we do offensively, although it may not be as pretty or flashy or speedy, it's a unique prep, so I think the extended prep does help, as well."

Chip Kelly answered in equally complimentary terms towards Wisconsin.

"They have been to the Rose Bowl last year and they are back in the Rose Bowl this year and they are arguably two players away from playing in the National Championship right no," Kelly said of Wisconsin. "What Bret (Bielema) has done with that program from the outside you kind of admire it and there's a consistency so it. He has a style of offense that he's going to play and he has a style of defense that he's going to play and they stick to that and they are really, really good at it.

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