Sunday night press conference quotes

WHAT WOULD Washington State do differently if they faced a defense like New Mexico's every week? Who is the Cougs' nominee for Pac-10 defensive player of the week? What will be the focus of Monday's practice? Did the coaching staff hold anything out against the Lobos that they might put back in for the Buffaloes? How's the injury situation? Answers to these questions and more as coach Bill Doba offers insight into the New Mexico victory and takes a look ahead to Saturday's tilt with Colorado.

Washington State Head Coach Bill Doba
Sunday, Sept. 5, 2004 press conference quotes

General thoughts after New Mexico…

"We have a lot of work to do. There were some good things. Special teams were good and our kids hustled. The blocked punt was huge. Adam West and Jevon Miller did a nice job and nearly made some big plays on special teams. Graham Siderius did a nice job on kickoffs. He wants to transfer to New Mexico because of the altitude. He really boomed the ball."

Defense against New Mexico…
"Defensively, we played a whale of a first half. I think they were out on the field too much. They had three big plays. The screen pass was a great call and the two runs were assignment errors. We have to improve our tackling. (DonTrell) Moore was a good running back, but we will face good running backs all year including this week (Colorado's Bobby Purify.)

"Will Derting had a nice game. He got a little tired having not practiced very much. Husain Abdullah had a nice first game. Alex Teems is our Pac-10 defensive player of the week nominee. It was his initial start and he two interceptions, could have had two others, and had five drive stops where he made the play on the third down."

Offense against New Mexico…
"Trandon Harvey and Josh Swogger had nice games for us offensively. Josh did a nice job of keeping his poise and composure."

Kicking game…
"Kyle Basler did a nice job. He had a 47-yard average with a 44-yard net. That's doing a nice job of getting the ball in the air and letting the coverage team get down there and make plays.

"Loren Langley hit three-for-three on extra points and I think we all found out how important that is this weekend. He was ready to try the 53-yarder on fourth and nine, but the staff thought they had a good play and they did."

New Mexico's defense…
"That is a difficult defense to run against. They really attack well. They fill gaps and come hard. They are very physical. BYU runs the same style of defense and Notre Dame struggled with that yesterday. They only had 11 yards rushing. We simplified the package. If you see that defense a lot, you need a two-back offense. We thought we would be good enough to get some push but we didn't. We didn't want to make a wholesale change for one game."

Comparing New Mexico to Colorado defensively…
"Colorado is a totally different system. I think our struggles against New Mexico were due to youth, inexperience, and it being the first game of the season. We can put some things back in...that we held back against (New Mexico). We will improve. They really stacked the box. They had eight or nine guys in the box and dared us to throw it. Had we caught a few of those drops on the first drive, everybody would have been happy. We just lost that edge a little bit and it took us a while to get it back."

Injuries…
"We didn't have anybody hurt. Pat Bennett had a stinger and got dinged a little bit. We will know more tomorrow. We will get an injury report Monday morning from Bill Drake."

Saturday's schedule…
"We conditioned yesterday. They run at 3/4 speed about 1,000 yards. They came in and lifted weights and had a team meeting at 4 p.m. They met with position coaches and went through some video after that. Today they were off."

Improving tackling…
"We are going to go back to some base fundamental work on Monday. I think we need to work on open-field tackling and make sure we keep our leverage. We overran the ball a little bit and ended trying to arm tackle too much."

Learning a lesson against New Mexico…
"Our kids aren't satisfied. They are happy and felt fortunate. I think we played a good football team. It will be interesting to see where they (New Mexico) end. They weren't content by any means and are open to anything that will make them better. This is really a good bunch of guys. We ask them to do something and they do it."

Trandon Harvey…
"He had a little hamstring pull during camp and missed part of spring ball, but you go with who is catching the ball and who is doing well. He does a good job of making people miss. He had six receptions for 48 yards and a touchdown. The touchdown was key. It wasn't an easy catch. He did a good job of catching it and stretching it across the goal line."

Chris Bruhn
"Chris Bruhn did a real nice job blocking. He didn't rack up a lot of yards, but he did a nice job getting his face in their and getting in the way."


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