The MMQB met for the first time this year to hear coach Pete Carroll. As was the policy last year, it was announced that the coach wanted to be able to discuss the program without being quoted on the Internet. In view of that policy, this report will reflect my impressions from the meeting and will not quote coach Carroll.
There were about 100 in attendance and the mood was very good. The win over Auburn has produced a lot of confidence in the Staff and the Team. PC was upbeat and, at the same time, quite realistic. He pointed out what we had done wrong in the Auburn game as well as the many positives. He talked about the big contributions being made by the new players and identified several that he felt would be regulars as the season progressed. Nothing he said would be surprising to those who follow the team closely and generally reflected the playing time of freshmen and JC transfers in the Auburn game. The only exception is that I was a little surprised that he predicts a major role for Lua as the season progresses.
He showed tape of selected plays from the Auburn game. All of them were positive as I recall. First to be shown were selected plays by the kickoff team. Then offense and finally defense. Lua's tackle on the first kickoff was quite dramatic and it is easy to see why he is so well regarded by the staff.
On offense he showed the highlight plays and I looked for #66, Eric Torres just to see how he did. On the plays selected, he did quite well. One thing I missed during the game that was quite evident on the tape, is that #83, Keary Colbert made some very good downfield blocks. Those plays were our best and reinforced my recollection that we often had receivers all alone in the open field. Chow's offense is clicking.
The defensive plays selected were just as satisfying. The play on the goal line where the officials awarded Auburn the TD was an exception. As you no doubt recall, Auburn recovered a mid-air fumble and, on the tape, it just did not look like a TD to me. The DL looked awesome on several plays shown.
For anyone in the Los Angeles area, I recommend attending the MMQB meetings. Doors to Town and Gown open at 11:30 AM, lunch is good and inexpensive. The meeting moves along quickly. PC is very candid and answers questions for most of the meeting. Today he was quit frank about his plans for Colorado. None of those questions or answers are included in this report in deference to the policy stated above and the obvious reason that I don't want to do anything to help Colorado.
As a conclusion to this report, I'd like to paraphrase Pete's answer to one question because it reflects his general attitude on football psychology. The question in general terms asked what he was going to tell the team about dealing with the altitude problem in Colorado? To which he replied in general terms saying, what problem?