Pac-10 Football Media Day Press Conference Quotes

Aug. 1, 2001

Pac-10 Commissioner Tom Hansen
'This is going to be a big year for the Pac-10, not only in football butbasketball as well. In March we have our men's basketball tournament hereat the Staples Center nearby. I'd also like to welcome our partners thisyear from the Rose Bowl, the national championship game, and from theFiesta Bowl.'

California Coach Tom Holmoe
'We're going into a really big year for the Cal Bears. Everybody will belooking at Cal this season to see how we're going to do and realisticallyto determine my future with the team. With that in mind, it's a darn goodteam I'm going into the season with. One of the players that's going tobe a big factor is (senior linebacker) Scott Fujita. (Quarterback) KyleBoller is another. The time is now for this program, this administrationand this coach.'

California linebacker Scott Fujita
'Here we are 31 days prior to kickoff, and we return practically everystarter. You can't replace a guy like (defensive end) Andre Carter, butwe had a lot of guys step up in the spring this year. We return 16starters, so it's very exciting looking at this season. As far asdefense, we're set in stone. And we have a group of offensive playersthat are ready to compete day-in and day-out.'

Washington State Coach Mike Price
'Philosophically, it's been three years since we've had a winning season.Winning is fun and the Cougs need to start having some fun again. Losingthree overtime games last year was tough, so we're looking to get back ontrack. We have the best offensive line, the most talented and thestrongest, since I've been at Washington State. We'll be able to run thefootball at Washington State this year.'

Washington State running back Dave Minnich
'Our wide receivers are better than a lot of people think. I'm reallyexcited about our offensive line, because almost everyone is back. And ifanyone knows how hard our defense is on me, they would understand. I'mjust looking forward to the season.'

USC Coach Pete Carroll
'What has guided us and directed our work since we arrived at USC is thiscoming together as a team. We're ready, we're in very good shape, we'releaner and have lost hundreds of pounds. I'm very excited about theoffensive side of the ball, especially Coach Norm Chow and the experiencehe brings to the team.'

USC cornerback Antuan Simmons
'I think it will take time (to return to form prior to illness). I justhave to go out and compete every day in practice and learn from mymistakes. The game was much slower to me when I was playing, noweverything is much quicker, so I am still trying to get used to that.'

Arizona Coach John Mackovic
'I'm excited to be back. The opportunity at the University of Arizona wasnot one that I had anticipated. But when the opportunity did presentitself, I knew immediately that it was the right fit. (On being pickedninth in the Pac-10 poll) Been there, done that. It's not the first timeI've had a team that's been picked at the bottom of the barrel, and it'snot a bad thing. It gives you the chance to surprise people and provethem wrong.'

Arizona strong safety Brandon Nash
'I'm really excited about the season and having a brand new coach. I'mjust excited to get started. We have a lot to prove, looking at thepreseason polls, and we hope to turn a few heads.'

Arizona State Coach Dirk Koetter
'When you're a new coach you have that honeymoon period, and everyone'streated me so well since January first. I am very impressed with ourplayers and the buy-in factor with what we've tried to get done thissummer. Nobody has higher expectations for this program, and that startsright here with me.'

Arizona State offensive lineman Scott Peters
'I'm extremely proud of how we've handled ourselves this summer. We hadclose to 100 percent attendance, which is a first since I've been here.We've tried to outwork everyone else in the country, which has prettymuch been our attitude. We're stronger and faster, so we're lookingforward to starting camp in 12 days.'

UCLA Coach Bob Toledo
'Looking at last season, nine of our 11 games were decided by sevenpoints, so we could have had a great season. The team that's come back isprobably the most experienced that I've had, so I feel very good aboutour team from that standpoint. The injuries last year made us play a lotof younger players that now have much more experience.'

UCLA tailback DeShaun Foster
'I'm healthy and doing well. We have 24 seniors and a lot of team unityWe're just looking forward to playing at home on January third.'

Stanford Coach Tyrone Willingham
'I am excited and as always guarded about the things I say about our teamand our program. There are still a lot of things I do not know about ourprogram, and will find out during two-a-days. I liken it to a NASCARrace. There are a lot of good teams in the Conference, and we're hopingto let some of those teams pull us along and hopefully when the race isdone we can finish near the front.'

Stanford free safety Tank Williams
'We've been working very hard, conditioning-wise and strength-wise, beingas tough as the Pac-10 is. We have a lot of leaders who are stepping upto replace the departed leaders. Randy Fasani has stepped up. Coy Wireand Marcus Hoover have stopped up and taken on the leadership roles.'

Oregon Coach Mike Bellotti
'We're very excited obviously. The preseason prediction (No. 1 in thePac-10 media poll) I hope definitely comes true, so thank you. Ourplayers certainly understand that we have to go out and earn that everyweek. Offensively I certainly think we have the chance to be a veryspecial team. We're excited about the (Heisman) campaign for Joey.'

Oregon quarterback Joey Harrington
(About the Hesiman campaign) 'I'm excited. I would be lying if I saidotherwise. It's a neat experience. How many times do you get the chanceto see yourself 12 stories high in downtown Manhattan? As far as addedpressure, I don't think it's possible to have more pressure than thepressure I place on my self.'

Oregon State Coach Dennis Erickson
'It's an exciting time for all of us and we're excited about what liesahead. We lost a lot of talented players, but we have a lot of talentcoming back, starting with Ken Simonton. The young guns will have to stepup in our program, too. That's a real key. We've got key leadership. Theparity in this league is unbelievable.'

Oregon State tailback Ken Simonton
'This is why I came back. We've got the talent and the chance to do itagain. It's going to take us working hard together to get there. (On theHesiman race) Anyone playing the game -- quarterbacks, DBs, running backs-- has the chance to win the Heisman. My main focus is us and the team,but it's good to be in contention for a piece of the pie.'

Washington Coach Rick Neuheisel
'We are thrilled with the way things went last season, so now we have thechallenge of defending our co-championship and finding a way to be in therace again in November. The kids have met every challenge since I've beenhere. My parting line is that we're going to be a great team, eventually.It's my job to make sure that eventually gets here in a hurry.'

Washington nose tackle Larry Tripplett
'Curtis (Williams) is part of the Husky family, so he is never going tobe forgotten. He'll always be in our prayers and on our minds. (Onforgoing the NFL draft) Being a senior, I feel like I'm completing mycollege career. The last game, the last home game, those are all thingsthat everyone should experience, in my opinion.'

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