Beavers Continue Insight Bowl Preparations

Dec. 23, 2004

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. - - Oregon State continued its preparations Thursday for the December 28 Insight Bowl against Notre Dame, going through a two-hour practice at Desert Mountain High School. After the workout, OSU head football coach Mike Riley talked with reporters.

(On the impact Oregon State defensive end Bill Swancutt has had this season) 'Bill Swancutt has had a great, great year. It has typified his career at Oregon State. He's a guy who has grown with the program and has become one of those guys who is a pillar of our team. One thing about Bill, you always know what you're going to get. He gives a great effort and plays hard on every play and has been very productive.'

(On Notre Dame's situation, and going through the coaching change while getting ready for a bowl game) 'It's unusual, for sure. Usually you don't go through those deals when you've had a bowl season. Like I said from the beginning, that's something they're going to have to deal with - whatever happens with that, I don't know how that's affecting them at all. Our focus is ourselves and preparing for what they've done during the season, which I think has been playing a lot of good football.'

(On Notre Dame having a strong run defense and OSU's offense relying on passing this season) 'I don't like playing the way we do, necessarily. I would rather run the ball better, so we have tried to do that in each ballgame. And we have gotten our runs - we usually get one a game that is pretty good for us and is a big play, but we would definitely want to be more consistent running the ball but this is another tough chore.'

(Notre Dame quarterback Brady Quinn is a sophomore but has had some big games and done a good job - is there anything you do to try to take him out of his game early?) 'We'd like to be disruptive to every quarterback - that's going to be our goal all the time. I think we're going to have to have balanced defense, run and pass, against these guys because I think they're capable of doing both well.'

(Does Notre Dame still have its football mystique?) 'I have a lot of respect for the tradition. I think anybody that's been in college football and watched college football for a long time will continue to have a respect for the tradition of Notre Dame football and what it means to all of us that are in college football. It is a special thing, I think, to be able to play them for Oregon State - it hasn't happened very often in the history of football at our school so this opportunity is one we're proud to have and want to take advantage of.'

(One of Notre Dame's fifth-year seniors said they called the 2001 Fiesta Bowl the 'Fiasco Bowl.' They said not to take Oregon State lightly; do you feel the same way about playing a team with a 6-5 record?) 'We're the same record. I watched them beat Michigan, Michigan State and Tennessee - that is a team not to be taken lightly, for sure.'

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