Kenny Young: "I Love Chasing Down Quarterbacks"

Oct. 4 -- UCLA middle linebacker talked about his role spying quarterbacks and preparing for ASU...

Kenny Young answered questions Tuesday after practice.

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On the challenges ASU brings offensively:

Honestly, if we just execute the plan we have and do the things we have, I think we'll be fine. The biggest thing is being consistent and keep taking the next step.  See things you can get better at. Consistency is the key and the mental approach. The standard is always high. The challenge is what you make it. Consistency is the key right now.

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On if he prefers run heavy or pass heavy:

It really doesn't matter. I don't try to be biased with it. For the most part, we play teams that run the ball a lot.  For me, it's 50-50, prepare for the pass, prepare for the run.  Either or.  Things always change.  The quarterback goes out. If you focus on the run game, things could change.

On the offensive versatility in the Pac-12:

When we go to meetings, we never prepare for the name of the opponent, we prepare for, can we perform again. Doesn't matter if its Stanford, Auburn or Florida State, it's always about us. If you keep it that way, you have a narrow focus and you have a chance to win more games. When you turn weaknesses into strength, you have a better chance to succeed in the long run.

On if there has been a scheme tweak that's allowed him to step up:

I don't think it's a tweak, it's a standard. How can I be at my best. There is a routine.  You have to know it and find it. It won't come easy, you have to find it.  School starts, focuses are distracted. Once you get ahold of things, you have to stick with it and practice it and you'll get that ultimate success.

On if he feels different as a player:

For sure, I feel more confident, I play more loose and better. The guys are responding to my leadership. No one in a negative way. I want to grow in a leadership aspect. I want to elevate. I'm not satisfied. The roof is still high for me. The more I get better, the higher it is.

On spying the quarterback:

Things always change. They're a heavier run team, so we prepare for every situation.  If that's something we have to do on Saturday, I do what the coaches ask me to do to the best of my ability. The plan works best and the coaches put together a great scheme. And I love it.

On if he likes that role:

I've been playing this game since I was 8 years old, so it's putting a kid in the park and letting him run around. You don't think about it, you just do it. You're giving it all you can. I love chasing down quarterbacks, that's one of the best feelings and you can get sacks. But I love when our defense plays on point.  That's when I have my most fun, when we're all together. 

On if the loss to ASU last year sticks with them:

Its in the back of our minds. The losses this year are in the back of our minds. Every downfall we've had, it's always bothered me. This week, it came to my mind.  That loss, wow, we lost to those guys and I felt we shouldn't have lost to them. We'll continue to strive this week to get a W this Saturday.

On what sticks out most about that loss:

I don't like losing. I hate losing more than I like winning. I'm a competitor. I don't like losing 1on1s, I don't like dropping picks. It's my competitive nature that I've always had. It always drove me. No one can be better than me.

On Trevor Moewad's impact:

You give a kid 100 different things, it's too much, so you organize things and make it clear and organized. It's how you calm your mind during the week.  Me playing well doesn't just come from showing up, it has to start in practice. Its a process and if you have it up through the game, it sets you up for success.

On if the process has changed:

For coaches, for players, you want to prepare yourself. To have ultimate success on Saturday, it starts on Monday, the way you practice, eat and drink, it all matters for Saturday. If you don't do it, you'll suck on Saturday. Trevor has helped and given me things to focus on while I'm dealing with things off the field.

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