Quotes From Andrew Walter's Monday Press Conference

Oct. 27, 2003

TEMPE, Ariz. -- Following is a transcript from Arizona State junior quarterback Andrew Walter's press conference:

How is your ankle doing?
'I can walk around just in shoes, but to keep the swelling down I'mstill wearing the boot. It will help increase recovery time. We'llsee when I get a chance to tape it up and test it out; maybetomorrow, maybe later on this week. No matter where it is though,I'm going to go ahead and give it a whirl this Saturday.'

Describe the play where you got hurt.
'It was a three-step drop and I was going to try and get it to HakimHill [on the pass]. I was doing one thing and he was doing another;he was doing the right thing, but I thought he was going to hook itup and instead he kept going straight. I tried to spin out of it andthe UCLA player was hanging on me when I was trying to spin away andmy ankle got rolled up and I went over the top of him.'

What have the doctors and trainers told you?
'The prognosis is day-to-day. What they said is there is just asprain. I kind of just got my leg caught underneath me.'

Is there a lot of pain in it?
'When I woke up this morning there was pain, but there is pain when Iwake up every morning. But it will be fine. I worked it out earlierthis morning with Ed Orr (ASU Head Athletic Trainer) and that made itfeel a lot better.'

Could you assess Sam Keller's performance as a true freshman comingin like that?
'I thought he did pretty well. I definitely could not have done thatas a true freshman. It's hard to grasp mentally everything that isgoing on and to be put in that stadium of the Rose Bowl against apretty good defense that is trying to take away the passing game,everything was stacked up against him. All of it occurred at onceand that is a lot to handle, but I think he did very well with it.

'He's going to learn exponentially. The next time he goes out thereon the field, there won't be nearly as many things go wrong andthat's just the way it is with a young quarterback. I thought heshowed a lot of courage out there and he definitely has a brightfuture. As time goes on you get that much better and that muchbetter.'

Comment on your timing with the receivers, especially after you weresaying that the play where you hurt your ankle there may have beensome miscommunication.
'It's a little different when you have running backs out there asreceivers than when you have receivers out there. If we've been offin the last two or three games, we've been okay. When you put arunning back out there, there can be miscommunication. I justenvisioned Hakim hitching up. I thought we were close and startingto click, but then I got hurt. In the first quarter against UCLA weweren't as sharp, but we were heading in the right direction when Igot hurt.'

How frustrating was it to sit on the sideline and not be able to goin and play?
'It is not a situation that is any fun. When you can't do anythingall you can do is talk to whoever is out there and try to help themout.'

How was the decision process of whether you were going to go backinto the game or not?
'I took a shot in the locker room and they taped it up. Last year Iplayed with three cracked vertebrae in the Holiday Bowl, so it's nota question of toughness. I just felt that I would be hurting theteam because I couldn't move in the pocket. It was not a situationthat would have helped anybody. I tried everything I could to loosenit up but nothing was happening.'

Does your experience allow you to miss a couple days of practice andstep in and still play well?
'As long as I can get a handle on the gameplan without having anyreps in practice. That's why I want to get back as soon as I can toget the reps in practice with the different gameplan. I guess I'mexperienced enough to miss some practice and get back out there, butI just want to make sure I have the gameplan down.'

Can you draw on the San Diego State game from last year when youweren't able to work on the gameplan ahead of time?
'I think so. In my mind I can say I've done it before so there isnot a reason for me not to be able to do it again. I'll try to draw onthat past experience to help me out if I'm not able to get as manyreps this week.'

Do you feel like this game is sort of a payback game for when Calcame to Tempe last year and won?
'There are a few games from last year that were like that. Thisgives us a chance to go back out and establish a win in our home.That's what we want to do. We have to work hard in practice and notgive anything up because they're going to come in here just as hungryas last year.'

Was the Cal loss more frustrating last year than the UNC loss?
'They were both pretty close to being equal. I thought we wereclicking but we couldn't finish drives at the end, which was similarto North Carolina. Plus, they were both at home so that made itworse. When you have a chance to win and you lose, it makes it muchmore frustrating.'

Does the team have to reassess its goals as the end of the season isdrawing nearer?
'I think we are all right as a team, we're strong. We've sufferedsome tough losses and we are not where we wanted to be. We have togo from here and reestablish where we are. We have to make surepeople keep working hard and are heading in the right direction.'

Was the team meeting yesterday different from any of the others?
'It wasn't really anything different. We just have to keep talkingand communicating, but it wasn't any different than any other Sundayafter a game.'

Is the game against Cal a must win situation?
'After USC, every game was pretty much a must win, and this is nodifferent. We didn't take care of that, but every game from here onout is a must win.'

Are there any concerns with your mechanics with your ankle being hurt?
'Not really. Just as long as the ball in going in the right place, Idon't think I will compensate a lot. At this stage of the seasonI've had enough time in the games where I haven't had to be perfecton every throw, so earlier maybe, but not so much now.'

If Sam Keller plays at quarterback this week, how much will he havebenefited from the game at UCLA?
'I think he'll benefit a lot. The first game everybody is flyingaround and it's real fast and the second game it slows down and thethird slows down from that. I would foresee him being able to have apretty strong outing. He's confident and he knows what is going onwith the offense. I think that the next time out he will continue toimprove and if something happens I can see him having a very goodgame.'

How long will the injury take to heal?
'Every morning they find out where I am. I'm not worried too muchabout it. It may be banged up for a while but everybody has nicksand bruises that they have, this has just been talked about more.'

Is it your expectation that if you can play the gameplan will be asif you're 100%?
'Yeah. I want to be able to go so we can have the gameplan at acertain level. I'm not saying anything negative about Sam's ability,but we want to prepare a gameplan accordingly.'

If you played the game in shotgun, would that help your ankle?
'It would be too much of an adjustment. We tried the shotgun earlierthis year and it didn't work out. With us, we would have to changetoo much. I'm not a big fan of the shotgun anyway, it's fine, it's achangeup, but it's not a cure-all.'

Can you lean on your running game if you're in a pinch this week?
'Absolutely. Loren Wade and the offensive line have given everybodyconfidence. Guys are confident in the running game and we have togrind it out, we are confident in our ability to run the football.Our offensive line has been playing great.'

Will you try and practice tomorrow?
'It will depend on how it feels during the day. I'm going to try andgive it a shot, and it not, I'll try it on Wednesday.'

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