Weekly Interview with SJSU's Terry Malley

Inside Sparta will revisit Scott Cooley's interviews with San Jose State Quarterbacks coach Terry Malley. The series begins with the March 6, 2009 talk. We'll catch up throughout the week.

Each week leading up to and during the 2009 NCAA football season, Inside Sparta will be interviewing the San Jose State Quartberacks Coach, Terry Malley. The interview with Coach Malley will be presented in a Q & A format and will delve into his extensive football knowledge, discussing anything from players, teams, injuries, formations and more.

If you would like to submit a question to ask Coach Malley please send it to scott@insidesparta.com.

Scott Cooley - Inside Sparta - Tell me about the opportunity you've been given with San Jose State University as the Quarterbacks Coach?

Terry Malley - "It's an exciting time. The program has made a lot of progress in the last few years and there are players in school that you see potential in. You are curious to see if there is one more big jump left in front of the program, and you're hoping you are coming in at the time that maybe that will happen."

SC - What have you been doing since accepting the position on February 13?

TM - "They put in a new offense last year so I am trying to get up to speed with that. First of all, they put a lot of it on tape everyday to get a general feeling of what they did to it. We have meetings to evaluate what they like and what they didn't like, what we want to keep, what we want to throw out and what we want to add. So that part of the process has been really enjoyable. We've got a good group of people on the offensive side to work with so they've made the orientation period very enjoyable."

SC - Many consider you to be of legendary status out here in the Bay Area in terms of football, but how has your experience been working with Head Coach Dick Tomey, who is a national football icon?

TM - "Coach Tomey is an amazing person. He is head of the American Football Coaches Association this year which I don't think you become the head of unless you are universally respected. I think that the energy he has is pretty impressive. He has a great ability to let people know that he cares about them.

"When you go to work for somebody it really is impressive when you run into a lot of people that know that person and they are extremely complimentary of that person. And that would be the case in Coach Tomey's situation. It is amazing how many people come and tell you how impressed they are by the type of person he is. That is pretty impressive because sometimes when you are a public figure people try to take you down a notch, but everybody to the person talks about what a quality human being he is."

SC - Both you and Coach Tomey are going to be calling offensive plays this season, is that going to be a tough adjustment for you considering you were the sole play-caller with the SaberCats the last nine seasons in the Arena Football League?

TM - "When you come into a situation like this you understand there is going to be a little bit of a learning curve. I think it would be arrogant to come in and say you have all of the answers. Each day I think I get a little bit better grasp of the talent we have here, the talent we are going to play and the structure of what we're doing. So I hope that I am making progress in those areas.

"To a certain extent you don't know if the learning curve is a week, a month, two months or a year. Sometimes you still want to put that receiver in motion and they keep on telling me I can't do that (laughing). It has been fun.

"Of course a lot the concepts carry over but some don't. The idea of spacing in the passing game, fundamentals and those types of things do carry over. If there are better ways to create space for the quarterback and make his progression a little bit easier we sit there in meetings and go over ways to do that."

SC - Has college football ideology changed since you were last a head coach for Santa Clara University in 1992?

TM - "I think that the concepts carry over for a long time, but you are seeing some things that I didn't see awhile back when I coached. This ties into this and you need to see it over and over again. It's like anything else, every time you see it you get a little bit more comfortable with it and that's been my experience so far.

"The first few days you look at tape and say, 'Shoot, this thing has changed drastically.' During Christmas I talked with a lot of different coaches who basically helped me get up to speed and moved that process along. You just can't walk in and say, 'Hey, I would like to do this,' so I'm spending a lot of time coming in, taking notes and going over and over them again and again. You put it all together and then go through another week."

SC - When does Spring practice start, and are you prepared for your first interaction with the players?

TM - "Spring practice begins on March 14 so that will be the first time we get to see them throw and catch. They have been working out in the mornings so you do see them walking through here, going to the weight room and all those things. They also come by here so we can check their academic progress.

"I'm slowly getting familiar with the young men in the program and that's been an enjoyable part. There's something nice about 18-22-year old kids. Today, Rashied Davis came by and was working out in the weight room. Rashied is going into his fifth year in the NFL (Chicago Bears), and I think he is a nice role model because he is showing up at 7 o'clock in the morning to get his run in and lift in. He had an opportunity to talk to some of the players, and if there is a young man they need to listen to it's him because he has had a nice career and has really turned into an outstanding adult."

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