Quotes from Tom Holmoe's Media Luncheon

Oct. 24, 2000

BERKELEY - Below are selected quotes from Tom Holmoe's weekly media luncheon on Oct. 24. This week, Cal travels to USC to face the Trojans at the L.A. Coliseum. Kickoff is at 3:30 p.m., and the game will be televised back to the Bay Area on KICU TV (Channel 36).

Looking back at the Washington game:

'It was just as tough on film as it was there live. The guys gave a great, great effort. They came there to win the game, and really believed they could win it. We basically gave it away. I'd say that we went into the locker room after the game - I've seen disappointment and sadness in the past, but this was a different locker room. They were mad. It was a strange emotion to see from a Cal team. But it was a good emotion because I think they finally realized that we just handed that game to them. It was our mistakes, we did it, and that can't happen. They were very angry with themselves - the coaches were and the players were. We'll move on now.'

On this week's opponent, USC:

'USC is a team that has some issues of their own to deal with. I'm not going to involve myself in those other than how we can strategize and effectively come up with a game plan that will work. Our players have very good attitudes about this game. We're kind of eager to get this one going. It's a big game for us at Cal, knowing that it's an LA game and that there are a lot of LA kids on the team.

'You look at them on film, and you don't know what the emotional scale will be. We've just got to prepare for our game. We've done that the last couple of weeks. We gone in and played our game. That's been successful. That's been a good way to go.'

On quarterback Kyle Boller:

'I think he has a better feel for the game. There were three of situations in the game - we saw it on the field and confirmed it on film - where, three weeks ago he would have been sacked. Not so much because of his mobility, but he was smart enough and had a good enough sense on the field to throw the ball away, to scramble out of the pocket and throw it away. Now, that's a new rule this year. In the past, that would have been intentional grounding. But this year, he just had - that sense to throw it away. Those were three huge plays.

'With his mobility, I don't think he's Marques Tuiasosopo, but he ran pretty effectively in the open field. He scored a touchdown and he ran to the open space. I hold my breath when he does that, but it helped us. It kind of expands our offense a little bit. If he can run the ball off a scramble, it's going to open it up big time.'

On USC's top offensive threats:

'They have a couple of players who are very explosive. Kareem Kelly is a stick of dynamite out there just waiting to blow up. He's got the potential to be great on any given day. And he showed it last year as a true freshman. He's had some very good games this year. But they've kind of struggled at getting him the ball. Sultan McCullough is a college elite sprinter. He can get in the open field and he's gone. He's had some excellent games this year. He's carried the ball for over 150 yards in a game. Those are two explosive offensive guys that can make things happen.'

On Cal's performances late in games:

'That's where we can get better. When you get down into a key situation in a game, where everything is one the line and you've got one shot, you've got to come up to the line of scrimmage and be totally poised and execute to perfection. That's we we've got to get tough. You want to do it throughout the game. Obviously, you'd be really good if you could do it the whole game, but we've got to get better in those key situations.'

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