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2010 Coaches Quick Hits

Monday March 29, 2010

Quoting Les Miles: "I think we're in step. There's a want to re-focus and be excellent. I think it's in the coaching staff and the players, certainly. I think we should compete for the title, but I always think we should compete for the title."

"I stay pretty insulated from it, to be honest with you. I'm not a guy who gets on the Internet, nor am I a guy who entertains Internet chatter. I judge what's going on in this program by what's going on inside this building. Understanding that makes me have more of a comfort about the direction we're headed.

"I think the perimeter in every program - the Floridas, the Oklahomas, the Alabamas, wherever the perimeter is -- doesn't really have accountability. I promise you this: There's nobody more critical of this program than myself."

"I like where we're going."

Quoting Nick Saban: "The No. 1 thing you worry about is complacency with players." Saban said. "I haven't seen that in our players to this point. But it remains to be seen. That's what we're trying to develop with them."

"When you accomplish something, are you ready to go and go do the next thing? Or do you just want to bask in the glory of all that and not get focused on the challenges that you have in the future? And there's no question that I think it's a little easier sometimes to deal with adversity. Players usually respond better when they lose sometimes than when they win."

Navy defensive line coach / recruiting coordinator Dale Pehrson could have joined the Georgia Tech staff: Ken Niumatalolo says, "I'm very happy that [Defensive line coach] Dale Pehrson stayed. He had the opportunity to go to Georgia Tech and I'm grateful that he stayed. He has been a major part of this staff for many years that not too many people know about. They always see the coordinators, but coach Pehrson has been our recruiting coordinator for many years and runs our camps. He's done a great job with the defensive line for many years and I'm grateful that he stayed."

Quoting Syracuse head coach Doug Marrone: "When I was offered the job here, I talked to coach Mallory. He said, ‘I'm not telling you who to hire, but if you want to hire someone a lot like yourself, you need to talk to Scott Shafer.' "

Quoting Syracuse DC Scott Shafer: "I think it's one of those situations where we were so bad, that better is good. But it's not where we want to be. We want to try to push to the point where we can be one of the better defenses in the conference, and in a lot of areas we were. But the end result is we've got to find a way to win games."

"The biggest thing we focused in on was changing the attitude and, with that, the effort on the football field. The kids really bought in. When you're an attack-style outfit, those kids like that. They want to be aggressive. They want to have that mentality."

"Our job is not only to get the ball back to the offense, but to find ways to change the momentum of the game. As much as there were good improvements (in 2009), there weren't as many ‘change the game' plays from our side of the ball that I would like to see."

"We want to get the Dome really, really rowdy and make it easier on the offense. That's our job, and we look forward to that challenge."

Greg Schiano comments on Joe Paterno: "Joe's not a phone guy, and neither am I, but we see each other at different things. It's always special to me to see him and I just love seeing how well he's doing."

Quoting Bowling Green head coach Dave Clawson: "So many jobs are open. We only return seven starters."There's a lot more competition (than in 2009)."

"You enjoy having more established guys [because] you're certainly starting at a higher level. But I don't think we lack for talent, we're just young. If you're young and not talented, you have no shot. We're young, but we have talent."

Quoting Turner Gill: "We can only evaluate on what we see. We're not just going to guess on what they might have done in the past, but what they are able to do right now."

David Cutcliffe talks about the Duke spring game: "I'm really pleased with the crowd that we had. There was a lot of energy and enthusiasm surrounding today. We came out injury free, which is huge. We divided our team up where we had unit-against-unit, in other words, our one offense competing against our one defense, and the twos against each other. I thought it was competitive. The play of Brandon Connette stood out, as it has in a lot of scrimmages. It was good to see us run the football. I thought the offensive line blocked well at times and consistently. I am anxious to look at it and get back into the fall. I think we accomplished what we wanted to accomplish in the spring, and that was to learn a lot about our young football team."

"I like our one offensive line right now. I am more than pleased with them. They are knowledgeable, stronger and quicker. They are a little better across the board. I also like what our young linemen have done. For the first time since we have been here, we are building depth in that area. It is good to see and the tight ends are a part of that. We have some good experience and we are building a little bit of depth at tight end."

"At times, I don't see the receivers separating from coverage like I would like. I look over to see who it is, and I hope it's the corner that is creating that. I don't think there is any question that we are more athletic and faster. One of the reasons we did live punts is because we have a lot of people to evaluate in the kicking game. We have more athletes to play the kicking game than we have never had, so I want to see them take punts and cover punts. When you starting thinking about that, that is a lot of people in the spring game doing a lot of different things that can occur in the kicking game. We are thrilled about that and I think that will teach us a lot about the speed of our young athletes."

Quoting Mike Stoops: "When you get solid quarterback play like we're getting right now, that really helps.

"I think we have some playmakers. We hopefully will be able to get some yards, some big yards in chunks. We had to work pretty hard for our yards last year. I like what we're doing offensively."

"Losing all three linebackers ... those guys are in the middle of everything. That is probably the area that we're the youngest."

"We're replacing those guys with three guys who haven't played much at this level. Just getting them to play at a more rapid speed, see things more quickly, be more sudden as a defense, is what we need to do."

Quoting Western Kentucky head coach Willie Taggart: "A lot of those guys have never taken a snap from center and dropped back - in our offense you've got to do that. You've got to take five-step drops, seven-steps, three-steps - the footwork is really different for the quarterbacks."

"The reads in the pass game are different, and if it's a challenge on anyone, it's on (the quarterbacks). But that's the way I wanted it to be. If a guy really wants that position, he'll be in there studying the film a little extra and finding a way to get it done."

"It's gone better than I thought (it would). The thing about this offense is that you've got so many formations and you line up in so many different ways that it can get confusing to those skilled guys. Up front it's not that much different, but it's been going well. Better than I expected. I thought it might have gotten a little crazy out there."

Quoting Memphis head coach Larry Porter: ''The focus (in the third week) will definitely be on the physical aspect of the game. 'We've gotten to the point where we've installed most of the things we're going to install."

''Now it's a matter of going back and re-fining it, but also bring a physicality with it. Those first two weeks were more mental, now the next two weeks we've got to transition into being more physical.''