Rick Neuheisel notes and quotes - 8/13

Rick Neuheisel addressed the media this evening after roughly a two-and-a-half hour practice at Husky Stadium. Here's what he had to say about the health of his team, how the special teams will be coached this fall and also about the excitement of putting on the pads for the first time this fall.

General remarks: "I think that our guys are anxious to get the pads on. It gets tedious to be in shorts and doing the 'groundhog day' routine. There's a lot to work on and a lot to improve upon. I like where we're at. I like the fact that guys are working hard in this kind of heat. It's a blessing that we're getting this kind of heat and that we are able to work out in it and condition in it and so forth. There's lots still to do and I'm anxious to see us in pads tomorrow."

On being fatigued going into pads: "Fatigue and dealing with soreness is all part of the mental toughness that is needed to build a good football team and there's no question you need to fight through that. Coaching is a big piece of that, as is the leadership on the squad. I feel like we're doing well there."

On players sitting out of full contact: "Well, Reggie and Paul are probably not ready for contact. Sam Cunningham broke a bone in his hand today, so he'll probably miss the first couple of days. They'll cast it and he'll be ready to go Friday, I think. Most guys will be ready to go, and the ones that are 'one-a-day' will still be one a day."

On Matt Fountaine: "He's got to go through a few more tests to make sure that some conditions that he had prior to arrival here check out. They are health conditions. It's something he had prior to arriving here. I don't want to mention any more details until it becomes conclusive as to what the deal is. My hope is that he'll be available tomorrow afternoon. He has a test in the morning."

On Stanley Daniels: "There is nothing new on Stanley Daniels. That is not unusual when dealing with the clearinghouse. These things take time, so keep your fingers crossed. We are optimistic."

On Matt Lingley rejoining the team: "When Andre (Reeves) quit the team we had room for one more player. Since we had room we're going to work Matt back into shape."

On switching coaching responsibilities for special teams: "A year ago I had two secondary coaches. Chuck Heater coached the corners and Bob Hauck the safeties. Bob was also in charge of all the special teams. In moving Bob to be the full-time secondary coach and Chuck over to tailbacks I didn't think I could give him all of that responsibility and still doing everything that is necessary to be the secondary coach in terms of his work week. On the field he could handle it, but in terms of preparing it would be a bit difficult. So we divided it up. Chuck and I will be handling the return teams, punt return and kickoff return. Bobby and Cornell Jackson and Tim Hundley, and even Chuck a little bit will be handling the punt and kickoff teams. The norm is that there's just a special teams player, but coaches are not just on-the-field and gameplan guys, but they are also mentors. When you are a special teams coach, none of the guys are yours, so you miss out on that piece of it. I thought for a while about giving it entirely to Chuck, but he's also the recruiting coordinator, so we divided it up. And as long as people just understand that just because it's that way doesn't mean that we are any less responsible, we're going to be fine. And I'm excited about getting a little bit more involved in it too. I'm anxious to get good results."

On Wilbur Hooks Jr.: "Wilbur I've got on a one-a-day deal."

On the inevitable first day in pads-scrap: "It's wasted energy. Bottom line is, because of the rules regarding fighting it does serve as an opporunity for me to show the guys what exactly takes place if that happens in a game, which is an ejection. So usually what I will do is separate them and make them run a lap, which is something they don't really like to do and then they'll come back to work. And once they get the notice that it's not the way to go, they will usually refrain, which is our hope on gameday."

On Nathan Rhodes: "We're waiting on some tests there. He needs to see a back doctor. Our specialist in that regard is also the Seahawks' specialist and he's been called away on a family deal in Texas. We are waiting for him to come back so he can tell us the questions we need to be asking and so forth."

On Jason Benn as a deep snapper: "He's been very, very impressive. It remains to be seen how we go forward for the season but Jason Benn has looked really good."

On Ty Eriks: "He's getting a lot of reps. In the spring we didn't have many defensive bodies. A lot of players were out and not able to participate. The defense had been salivating over Ty Eriks for some time anyways, so we tried him out at safety, if you'll recall. He went over there and tried and we felt like he showed some promise but thought he would be better suited for linebacker. So we moved him up to SAM, and we don't have a lot of depth there right now. We're trying Tyler Krambrink a little bit there too, and also at WIL. Ty's got all the tools but he just doesn' t have the instinct yet for it because he's never played there before. We're excited about his progress."

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