Fall Camp: Player Quotes

Some select seniors and underclassman were on hand to kickoff the 2007 football season for the Huskies and they gave us their thoughts hours before they were to convene for the start of fall camp. Read on to find out the thoughts of those players...

Jake Locker

On his first game: "I'm kind of excited about my first game being in a dome because my last game was in a dome so I feel like I've come full circle and I feel good about the other players around me and I feel comfortable going into that game and that we will compete hard and do our best to get a victory. We're not overlooking anyone and we're focused on Syracuse and then we'll move on to the next opponent."

On the confidence of the team: "I feel like everyone is confident in the systems that we're running and everyone is buying into things. The offense and defense has been in here for a couple of years so the comfort level really is high and I think we're ready to see where we are."

On his comfort level with the other players: "I've been working hard to get comfortable with everyone and their roles and I feel like I'm there with that and I feel confident in all the guys I have playing with me and I'm excited with the potential of this team and what we can do this fall."

On making plays: "I've been really focused on my footwork this summer and getting that down because that was one of my struggles in the spring. I could make all the throws, but if my footwork was off I could throw it high or not very accurate. So that was a big thing for me. I worked on that all summer and felt a lot more accurate in 7-on-7's and with my footwork and release point and stuff like that that's just gotten better and I feel much better about that area."

On who he's looking for to help him prepare: "Me and Carl (Bonnell) have been spending a lot of time talking to each other. He's been here for a long time and he's got some experience so he's a guy that I spend time with and learn from and then coach (Tim) Lappano is someone who we both look to to help guide us in our play and preparation so we have a lot of different resources it's just a matter of using them."

Anthony Russo

On the work during the offseason: "We've had the momentum from the Apple Cup on offense and we've been working hard. Everything's been clicking this summer and I've been working on getting bigger and stronger and working on clicking with Jake (Locker) a little more."

On his time as a Husky: "It seems like it's gone so fast. When it's happening it doesn't seem as though it's going that fast, but now that I've had a chance to sit back and look at it it's definitely gone by too fast for me."

On the changes within the program since he arrived: "The offseason program has been great and we've been with each other early this year with the lifting and the guys have bought into things more every year I've been here and the guys are dedicated to the system and the team and we're excited about the tough schedule."

On the schedule: "We know it's tough and it's nothing that we can't get through. It's nothing that we can't handle. It's the Pac 10, I mean, that's top level, you're supposed to have schedules that tough so we're looking forward to it."

On his increased role: "I'm going to be back there doing punt returns again and this time I'm sorta looking forward to it. When I was doing it back in my sophomore year it was kinda like ‘oh…I guess', but this time I'm actually looking forward to it and I plan on taking some back this year."

Carl Bonnell

On his time at Washington: "Me and Louis Rankin were just talking about that earlier with playing football and being a student and stuff like that. It's weird to think that it's all coming to an end and that we won't be playing college football next year."

On having fun playing the game: "I think you play your best when you're having fun and getting the passion and that just makes you play better and take things a little bit more seriously and just having fun makes things so much better and we had that in the spring and we're continuing that on into fall camp as well."

On being the elder statesman of the quarterbacks: "Well I feel like the older guys like Johnny (Durocher) and Casey (Paus) and Isaiah (Stanback) taught me well and with this being my third year in the same system it makes it easier to help bring along the younger guys because they look at me because I'm the one with game experience so it's pressure but it isn't too bad and I'm looking forward to it."

On being the backup: "The best thing for me is to play the best I possibly can. If I end up being the starter then that's great, but if I don't that will mean that Jake is that much better of a quarterback and I want to make the competition that much better and that much tougher for the coaches to make that call."

Marcel Reece

On his comfort level: "A lot of it last year was just trying to learn the system, well this year I've kind of got that down and I'm still working hard and working on that chemistry and the relationship with my quarterback and knowing everything I need to know to be successful."

On his Apple Cup influencing his offseason: "I think that had a little to do with it, but I would have been focused on having a great spring and great summer even if I didn't have success last year, but it made it that much more sweet."

On coach Lappano: "He always tells it how it is and he doesn't back down from anything. I mean, he's not a big guy, but he's an ‘in-your-face' guy who won't back off from anything. He's an aggressive coach and we like that and I know I like it a lot."

On his legacy after this year: "This is our year to start the winning tradition of the Huskies back up and we want to leave U-Dub being better than when we got here and that's been the goal of all the seniors and all of the other players really."

On Jake Locker: "I've caught a lot more passes from Jake and Carl than I ever did with Isaiah. When Jake and I came in it was like we were both freshman, but he acts like a veteran, he walks like a veteran, he talks like a veteran and he's just a real commanding presence out there for us and that's what we love about Jake because he's not scared of anything and won't back down from anything."

Dan Howell

On how close the team is to getting over the hump: "I think we're real close. I don't think we're that far away from being the ideal team that coach Willingham wanted from the time he arrived here and I know we're working hard toward getting to that goal."

On his leadership abilities: "It makes it easier when the guys actually look to you to be the leader. I'm ready to be a more vocal leader in my game play and how I do things and talk to guys. It's my time to be the leader and I'm embracing it and taking it as an honor and a challenge at the same time."

On the schedule: "I look at it like I do any other schedule and as a team that's really how you have to look at it. You have to approach it the same way as a great opponent and you have to respect them as an opponent no matter how good or how bad people on the outside might say they are, you have to treat them with respect or they can come up and bite you. You can't cut corners because someone can beat you. I don't care who we are playing, there is some level of difficulty in everyone that we play and we have to figure out a way to beat them no matter what."

On the linebackers: "I'm really happy about our depth and happy about our experience. I think this year more than any other there's guys who know what they are supposed to do and where they are supposed to be and because of that experience we should be able to be the best we can be so guys aren't guessing. We only have four new ‘backers this year so as far as learning and getting things down faster we should be able to do that and these guys are smart too and the young guys should pick it up quickly."

On the pressure on the linebackers: "We've got to do good as early as possible regardless of whether or not the secondary has depth and experience or not. I guess it doesn't matter if there were two new safeties or only one experienced DB back there in any case we have to get after it and as linebacker, we're supposed to be the leaders of the defense and that's what we expect out of ourselves.

Jordan Reffett

On the experience along the defensive line: "I'm looking for guys to step up big time this year. We've got experience and talent along the defensive line and it's exciting to see what we can accomplish. We expect everybody to be leaders out there and to take responsibility for getting this team where we want it to go and that's a championship."

On his Mohawk haircut: "This is something me and Greyson (Gunheim) started doing three years ago and we just do it to pass the time in camp and have some fun with it. I was trying to grow a handlebar mustache but unfortunately I can't do it. We have fun out there and it just lightens up the mood."

On the comfort level along the defensive line: "The defensive line is so great, I mean me and Greyson have been together forever and Wilson (Afoa) too and even (Daniel) Te'o Nesheim, who I call the youngster, we've all be together for a while and it's exciting because we know each other's niches and what we need to do and when we get together on the field good things happen."

On the pressure to ease the maturing process of the secondary: "The great thing is we have an experienced defensive line and if we're back there causing havoc and getting in the backfield, the quarterback isn't going to be able to throw the football and I think it's good for the young guys to know they have a line that's going to get after some people and to really make their lives easier, but it's not just us because they have guys back there like (Jason Wells) and Roy Lewis back there and the new guys coming will have to learn fast, but we've got some talent and we're ready to teach them and bring them along."

Jason Wells

On his comfort level leading the secondary: "This year is nice because last year I had to learn my position really quickly and I was kind of out there thinking more, but this year I will be able to just go on instinct and still be able to help guys get situated correctly and lined up right so we can be in the best coverage possible."

On the concussions: "Oh I'm not worried about it. I like to go out and set the tone and I can't hold back who I am and the way I play the game otherwise I could get hurt even worse. It's a concern, but not really because I love to hit and go out and play the game the way it's supposed to be played and that's in a physical way."

On making plays: "Oh I definitely want us to cause more turnover and make it so receivers don't want to come into our areas, but you also have to stay in control and make sure you have your assignments down too otherwise you can get caught out of position and give up big plays and that's worse than anything."

On his leadership and taking the young guys under his wing: "I know what it's like to come in and be confused and have everything flying at you out of nowhere so I feel like I can talk to some of the new guys we have coming in. We have some really talented young guys and it's going to be a learning process for them, but they'll be really good pretty quickly."

Daniel Te'o Nesheim

On his experience: "I loved last year and this year will be great because I have a comfort level now that I've been out there playing already. The speed of the game won't surprise me like it did last year because even though you practice with these guys, when you get out on the field and it's the real thing, it's a lot faster, but I have that experience now."

On moving inside on passing downs: "That was nuts last year. I went in there thinking of things I wanted to do and then when you get double-teamed, that's something that doesn't happen out on the end, you might get chipped by a back or a tight end, but when you're double-teamed by two 300-pounders it's just a lot different. This year it won't be as bad and honestly, we might not need me to move in there because we have some young guys who didn't play last year that might be able to be in there and I can stay out wide so, we'll see what happens."

Roy Lewis

On his offseason: "It's my senior year and you have to pay the price. Not only for myself, but for the team. I'm expected to be a leader and an example for the young guys coming in on what it means to be a Husky and play Husky football."

On being the old man of the secondary: "Me and Jason (Wells) and Mesphin (Forrester) are the guys who the young guys will look to for guidance and we're all going to be back there giving it to them. We've gotten the younger guys to come out and work with us and practice with us and work out with us. We showed them how to prepare and how to focus and how to just be the best player you can be."

On his mentality heading into the season: "I don't feel that old, but I am that old and I'm heading into my last year so it needs to be my best season. I look around for guys like Dashon (Goldson) and C.J. (Wallace) and other guys who have been here that aren't here anymore and so I'm looking for anyway that I can help my team out to be the best we can be."

Dawgman.com Top Stories