Tyrone Willingham Press Conference Quotes

Sept. 4, 2001

Who or what players have impressed you in camp so far:
'Actually, overall our attitude has been very sound ever since we've started camp. Our guys have a good sense of purpose, have worked well and as always, two-a-days are not easy on anybody. But I think we've maintained a very positive attitude, come through it all with very few bad practice days and everyone getting adjusted to the system I think speaks well for us.'

On players getting through training camp healthy:
'I think we're still a football team that has the bumps and bruises of two-a-days and I think we'll take that into our first ballgame. We'll have some guys that are looking like as if they're 100%, but may be a little less than that due to some minor injuries.'

On having to start one week later than Boston College, who defeated West Virginia last week:
'In my opinion, I think it's a real advantage for their team when it comes time to play. There's no substitute for playing a real game. As much as we try to simulate a real game in practice (game strategy, officials, etc.), you can't duplicate what a game gives you so I think it's a real advantage for them. Was it nice for us to have an opportunity to see them on television- yes it was. However, television never really gives you the full scope of a football game because there is so much that you don't see from watching the television. So we kind of have to surmise what was actually taking place during the game in terms of all the technical things. It really is an advantage for them to have a game under their belt for that kind of preparation.'

On the return of cornerback Lenny Walls to the Bay Area:
'First of all, he's very good. Now he adds along with his talent and skill level the incentive of coming back home and I think anyone who goes back home would like to represent themselves well, represent their families well and represent their areas well. From just the little that I've read so far, he was already excited the week prior to their game against West Virginia in terms of getting their guys excited and not wanting to come back to the Bay Area with a loss. So I know you can probably triple that excitement and that carries over to the whole team.'

Talking about this year's camp being different with more seniors in the mix:
'We basically tried to cover a set amount of material that we had planned to cover in camp . I think we did that but it's so much that you did it, but how you did it and how well it progressed you to be prepared for Saturday.'

On defending Boston College running back William Green:
'I think he's proven himself in the last two years to be one of the outstanding backs in the country. He was one of the top backs in the Big East last year and he's off to an even better start already this season. I don't know if anyone really has a formula for stopping him and hopefully we'll be able to come in and impede his progress.'

On the possibility of any true freshmen getting some playing time this week:
'As of right now, I'm still not sure. It's something that haven't sat down and looked over. Today is when we will start to really take a look at what the depth chart looks like, but it has to be a bigger decision than just this ballgame. We'll see where our future goes but we still have a little bit more time to make that decision.'

How do you motivate your players in the first game:
'I think there's a lot of excitement any time you open the season, and I think our players naturally have that. You always try and draw a positive from everything, and I think we can draw a positive in that we have seen our opponent play and you get excited now that it's your turn. So we'd like to jump in line with the rest of the country, get excited and play well on Saturday.'

Have you had a chance to watch many games so far this season:
'With our schedule it's very difficult to watch them all. You try to tape as many of them as you can, but for me it's a great time to get back into the strategy of game management while your watching the games and say to yourself- 'what should I do here, should I go for it, or should I call a timeout. It's a great time to work on your execution and game strategy.'

Discussing how long the game plan for Boston College has been in place:
'We tried to mix some things in during the preseason for the season because I think you have to prepare for the season as opposed to having the focus on just one team. So I think you do prepare for the season but you also have some things that you might test to see just how they work in a certain situation.'

Any noticeable injuries entering the season opener:
'At this point, I'm probably more concerned about the bumps and bruises that won't allow us to be 100% as compared to just having two guys out. Darin Naatjes- no question we will miss him because we think he can add something to this football game and Brian Head didn't really get a chance to show what he can do as a freshman.'

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