Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Beat the Rocket Presser

Not much to work with here.....wise ass remarks in orange.

Head Coach Gregg Brandon
What is your feeling on Toledo's quarterback situation
"Well, from what I'm hearing both [Clint] Cochran and their freshman [D.J. Lenehan] will play. But I'm really not concerned with who they are playing, I'm just concerned about my guys. Regardless of who plays at quarterback for UT, I think they have the best talent in the league, year in and year out, and this year is no exception. I think they are one of the top three in the league when it comes to talent and having good players."

I like this attitude. Opelt isn't going to play, but the Rockets will move the ball. Final could be 56-49. We need our defense's best game.

You did a nice job of stopping the run against Buffalo. Now you face another very good back in Toledo's Jalen Parmele.

"Yes, we did a nice job of taking away [Buffalo's] run. I think from a yardage standpoint, it was our best game. And, we kept them out of the end zone, which is what we need to do. They had a big play on us, but we stepped up in the red zone, and we've been doing that all season. Parmele is a big, strong back with better-than-average speed; he runs well, he sets up his blocks, he's a north-south guy and we have to get a lot of hats around him."

Parmalee will get his yards. Coach is right, if we can hold them just a couple times, we're in good shape.

On a personal level, how gratifying has this season been for you after coming off the 4-8 season?
"I knew what happened last year was temporary. Everything that had happened last year was a result of things we didn't control. We didn't have control of that brutal schedule, we didn't have control over having to play 27 freshmen and we just need to control the things we can control. That's just coaching our tails off and getting the kids ready to play, and that's what we did every game, and we just weren't good enough to overcome some situations last year. But, I knew this team would mature and the thing that's exciting now is the fact that I don't lose many guys off this team, as many will be coming back next year. So I think the pieces are in place. We still need to go out and get a couple of guys, which we will, and I'm excited about the future of this program."

This quote drives critics of Coach Brandon to absolute distraction. They excuse making about the schedule and the freshmen is simply maddening. But, to be fair, he did say we would turn it around this year, and we have.

Next year's team should win the MAC. No excuses.

This season has turned out to be a pretty good one after being 4-4 at one point. Would a win over Toledo take it up another level?
"Yeah, I think it would bring it close to being a really good season. Obviously, a great season would to win the MAC and accomplish all those sorts of things, but there are still a lot of things out there for this team. I think to ensure a bowl bid, we need to win this game. To be 8-4 and have the best record in the conference is something nobody can top. But we've still got to finish. That's what we talked about at Buffalo in the locker room, 'let's finish,' and this would be a great game to go out there and finish."

Amen, brother. It would.

How did you feel Michael Ream played this past weekend?
"Mike did a nice job for us. He's overcome some adversity in his life, which he's still working on daily, but it was nice to see him step up and do a real nice job for us."

It has to be nice to have a few more healthy bodies on the defensive line, isn't it?
"It's pretty good to have a healthy [Jacob] Hardwick and the depth that [Michael] Ream provides; especially with [Sean] O'Drobinak getting close to healthy again with his elbow. We still miss Nick Davis, though. Nick would have been a veteran guy in there that could've really helped us in that stretch where we were banged up. But, it's good at this time of year to be getting guys off the shelf and back in the fray."

Does everyone on the team understand the importance of the Toledo game?

"Well, I think it's something you need to talk about daily. I still have a fairly young football team that hasn't played in a lot of these games and the last time we beat Toledo, these fifth-year seniors were in that locker room right in this stadium, and those guys remember that. But the bulk of this team hasn't beaten Toledo, so we'll need to talk about everyday."

Enough is enough. Beat the Rockets.

No comments :