Tyrone Willingham Quotes - Text & Audio
Oct. 17, 2000
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Anything new to say about Randy (Fasani) and his situation?
I don't think there's really anything new to say. The week will determine exactly what his status is, and I think that's no different than we started off at the end of last week when we were asked those questions about his status.
He's (Fasani) been cleared for full practice though, right?
Yes, he has.
What would you anticipate the rest of Teyo's (Johnson) season looking like? At this point, do you think he's going to redshirt?
It's always been our desire to try to put him in that position so that he might benefit from this year from the opportunity to gain experience and learn more about the quarterback position. That has been our drive. That has been our desire, and hopefully we'll be able to reach that goal.
I know he (Teyo Johnson) had expressed interest in joining the basketball team in October? Is that still a possibility?
That still may be possible, yes.
But not this week, though (Teyo joining the basketball team)?
I never rule out anything.
So, it is a possibility he could conceivably practice with them this week?
It is possible.
Could he practice with them today?
It is possible.
The last three weeks you've had a lot of trouble once you get down into the red zone, converting opportunities into points. How do you remedy that?
Number one, you keep going at it. The first thing you do is let's start by getting in the red zone more times. Then we make sure - we evaluate our plan to make sure we've got a great plan of attack. Try to make sure that we put our guys in the best possible position there (in the red zone) and then we've got to make plays.
Has anything in particular struck you about USC - maybe in the last three weeks?
It's a very consistent USC team that we've seen over the years. They have what I believe is outstanding talent - young men that can play football and play football well. Sometimes, they haven't had the breaks go their way, and they're also going against what I think are some very good football teams.
Are you doing anything in practice this week to get a more effective offense?
No, I think over the years our plan has been good in terms of our practice structure. You always look at exactly what you do to make sure it's appropriate for the teams that you play. That is a constant reviewing process each week. So, those things are in place. We think we have a good plan, and we'll stick with the structure that we have.
How would you evaluate Chris Lewis' play the last three weeks?
I thought Chris improved each week. I thought he got better and better. He was able to begin to expand his game, and I'm excited about him gaining that experience. But as always, our measuring stick for our football team is to win the football game. So, as pleased as I am with his improvement, we still did not reach the goal. That is a 'we' did not reach the goal and Chris is a part of that.
What specific things would you like to see him (Chris Lewis) do better?
Everything and I think we'd say that about any of our players. You expect them to improve in everything. (If) you're looking for a specific, we'd like to eliminate as many turnovers as possible. Because turnovers have been a direct result, in a lot of cases, of a team's downfall. You can look at almost any team that plays every weekend and if they lose the turnover game, there's a good chance they're going to lose the football game. So, we need to improve in that, Chris needs to improve in that, our team has to improve.
Any update on (Zack) Quaccia (with his injury)? Is he still a couple of weeks (away from returning to action)?
I'm anticipating that that's what it would be.
What about Anthony Gabriel (with his injury)?
I would say questionable.
(What about Craig) Albrecht (with his injury)?
Albrecht (is) questionable.
(What about Russell) Stewart (with his injury)?
Stewart (is) questionable.
Any new injuries out of the Oregon State game that you're aware of?
(Colin) Branch had a minor injury. I think he'll be questionable. (Caleb) Bowman may be questionable. I think that may be the extent of it.
What would you term Randy (Fasani)?
What would I term Randy (Fasani)? I think Randy's just day-to-day if you're looking toward the weekend. Obviously, that's a conflict. That's why you cleared him.
I think I missed that point.
There's a conflict there, because if you asked me to go dig in there, we've said that he's been cleared.
Last year, you had adversity earlier with (the losses to) Texas and San Jose State. I had the impression, and I think most everybody here did too, that your guys never waited for something to happen - that they felt they had to cause it to happen to turn that around and they did. That underlining feeling of being able to turn it around, not waiting for a lucky break - not waiting for Aaron Focht to intercept it and go the other way. That underlying feeling still has to be there because it took roots?
We're hopeful that it took roots, but one of the big ingredients was having a big playmaker that can make plays. That is one of the things that we're not doing right now as a football team. We're not making the big plays. I pointed out to our football team that last Saturday we had seven plays greater than 15 yards but none of those resulted in a touchdown. They (Oregon State) had 10 (plays greater than 15 yards) and two of theirs resulted in a touchdown. So, that's not a good trade. What we've got to do is find ways to stay consistent. But, you also have to find a way to make some big plays when you have them. One of those runs has to pop out there and score for you. One of those passes has to score for you. So, we've got to find a way to make big plays. If you can make big plays (and) eliminate turnovers, score touchdowns when you're in the red zone - you have a better chance of winning, and that's what we have to do as a football team.
Does that also go for the defense in terms of creating (turnovers)?
If you're going to win the turnover game, then you have to not turn it over and your defense has to create some (turnovers). There's nothing wrong with the defense scoring. It's all hand-in-hand. It's a team effort to eliminate turnovers on the offensive part (and) create turnovers on the defensive part, score (on) special teams (and) defense, score in the red zone (on) offense, make big plays, eliminate big plays. It all goes hand-in-hand.
Monday, the presidents and chancellors are going to vote on the training table. Do you have an opinion on that?
No other than I've expressed earlier. I think that any time you can do something nice for the young men, I think you do it. (It is) always a concern to provide the best nutrition you can for your athletes. So, I think that is a very positive thing if our conference decides to vote in that direction.
Do you know of instances in which it's (no training table) been used against the Pac-10 in recruiting? Is that a legitimate concern?
Well, again I say that depends on what university you are. I think for certain young men, it is more of an issue. I think for young people that look at Stanford, one of their major issues is the academics and being involved in a great academically oriented institution. So, I think that may be a more important issue for us than the actual training table.
From a coaching and a game standpoint, is it easier to face a USC that's coming in here 0-3 in the conference than it would be if they were 3-0?
I don't think it's ever easy to face USC. They have great players and have a great tradition. They usually do a great job of playing and coaching. So, I think this is a very difficult challenge. So, I guess to answer your question, no.
In terms of the matchups with USC, what's your area of greatest concern (with) how your team matches up with theirs?
I think as always, it's speed. They have a very explosive team with their running backs, with their wide receivers. Their team speed is good on defense. So, you're always concerned about speed and being able to match up.