Arizona Football Press Conference Quotes

Sept. 16, 2002

On Saturday's win over Utah:

'I am real happy that we won that game. The players should be proud of the way they hung in there. Going back to even the 2000 season, that was the first time in three seasons that we have performed at the end of the game like that to win it. The defense deserves a lot of credit for how they played this game. We put them in bad field position a number of times, and they kept coming up with big plays. Our turnovers kept Utah in the game, and we put the defense in a tough situation, but they responded very well. They got some yards in the fourth quarter, but all in all, we held them to just 200 yards in total offense.'

'We finally played a 60-minute game, and we hung in there and won. We really needed a game like that under our belt. Now, we have to push through the fatigue factor and get back on an upward curve this week.'

On the defense:

'Clay Hardt had a good game and made a number of big plays in there. Darrell Brooks played a solid game. We had more movement with our front people, which we were trying to get, but we still are not where we need to be for us to be a consistently quality defense. Matt Molina played very well at his spot once again, and Ray Wells did very well. We rotated in a number of defensive ends during the game, especially people who could pass rush. We used our specialty defenses, the nickel and the dime, to be able to match up coverage wise. Overall, the defense did better.'

On senior quarterback Jason Johnson:

'If anybody played a better game at quarterback last Saturday, I don't know who did. He was unbelievable. No one played better than Jason.'

On junior halfback Clarence Farmer:

'Clarence tried to run the plays the way we wanted him to, and he should not be faulted for not getting any more yards. Utah has a good defense, they make good plays, and they don't give many teams rushing yardage. It was tough sledding for Clarence much of the night. We need to block some of those plays better. Even though he didn't get a lot of yards for it, Clarence had a full night's work. I was not disappointed at all in Clarence's effort. We are going to have to block and run better to make yards against Wisconsin this week.'

On Wisconsin:

'They are very well coached, and they know what they're doing. We knew that they were going to have a good team this year. Brooks Bollinger has been the catalyst behind that team. He runs the option, he is active, he's a terrific passer, and he's smart and tough. They also have built their game plan around solid defense and a hard, tough running game. They have played well against all kinds of teams. They are going to be as big or bigger than we are. They play on an artificial surface, which means that they are going to be fast. And, if they can't run against us, they won't think twice about passing.'

'Brooks Bollinger is like a Joey Harrington. He is active in the pocket, he throws, he can get out of trouble, and he can pull the ball in and run with it when he has to get away.'

'We lost the turnover battle Saturday night and won the game, which is highly unlikely. Wisconsin's defense has sparked some big plays with turnovers. They have been one of the top teams in takeaways over the last three to five years. They hit hard, and they go for the football.'

'Our first road trip will be a good opportunity for our players to travel and see what it's like to play people from other conferences. I am in favor of Pac-10 and Big Ten teams playing each other on a regular basis. It's good competition for our two conferences who play in the Rose Bowl all of the time.'

On Arizona's season outlook:

'Every game is a championship game. We have to think, act and play that way every day, every week. We have to be ready to play championship games.'

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