Keith Gilbertson Weekly Presser Quotes

Sept. 8, 2003

On Injuries to Joe Lobendahn and Robin Meadow 'Joe Lobendahn's going to have surgery probably in 10 days to two weeks after which he'll be out for the season. Robin Meadow re-injured an ACL repair that he had repaired in high school. It was on an interception that he was hit from behind and got his leg stuck underneath him. So Robin and Joe look like they're both lost for the season. Robin's going to have one more test today but they're pretty sure it's an ACL injury on the one that was repaired.'

On Affects of Injuries 'It's a real blow to both sides of the ball where we don't have a lot of depth particularly on the offensive line. I don't know that we'll have to reshuffle. I thought Tusi (Sa'au) played well but obviously our depth is affected by this.'

On Shifting Defense 'Well we're going to have to talk about that on defense now. There may be several moves. Greg Carothers may go inside. Marquis (Cooper) may go outside. Marquis may slide over and move Scott White up. Tahj Bomar is probably going to have to get more involved, get more reps, probably going to be in the two-deep. But he's played on all the kicking teams and done a good job so it's not that big of a leap.'

On Tyler Krambrink 'We will get Krambrink back. That's one thing. We've had Tyler Krambrink basically for two weeks with a fractured hand because it wasn't getting better so last week we said if we can limit him to punt team that he'll be ready to go in a week. So we get him back which helps us.'

On O-Line Depth 'Well I felt better about how Tusi (Sa'au) played this week in the backup role. He played fine. But now you're down to only one experienced guard at that position although Jason Simonson will probably move into the two-deep who has been here for five years. But we have to talk about getting that group where we think it's best for it.'

On the Bye Week 'I'd prefer probably not to have a bye this early in the season. I don't know that you've played enough and know enough about yourself. But we'll go back starting tomorrow and it's probably going to look like spring football where we concern ourselves with us and some little details and fundamental looks. Special teams will be an emphasis tomorrow and get some fundamental work real hard Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. We'll come back and look at the games, what we liked, what we didn't like, what we think we could improve, what needs to change. But I probably would prefer to play one more week. Particularly after a win, try to play again and keep that feeling over a week. I don't know what our record is after byes but I don't know that we've come out and looked stellar after byes. I don't know that anyone does. I think you get in a routine and it's a routine breaker.'

On Maintaining Intensity 'Well we're going to practice hard. We're not going to shy away from practicing hard. So they'll be physical practices, particularly Wednesday and Thursday and try to keep sharp that way.'

On Cody Pickett's Health 'I think he's fine. We're going to not throw today and he should be ready to go tomorrow. But it was a pec thing. He said his chest was tight. I think he mentioned to me during the week that it was tight so maybe it was something he did lifting. But the trainer said he'll be fine and ready to go. But we're not throwing today so the day off will be good for him.'

On Running Back Play 'I thought they all made nice runs. I thought they all broke tackles. I thought they all got the ball vertical and got up field. That was good. Rich (Alexis) looked very powerful and made some really nice runs and some yards after contact. Kenny James sprained his ankle and it really limited his effectiveness and Shelton (Sampson) came in and had some really nice runs and a couple scores but then he laid it on the ground which is a cardinal sin. You just can't turn the ball over. We had two fumbles, one going in to score a touchdown, which was unfortunate. But that rotation will stay probably like it was. I'd still like to take a look at Scott Ballew sometime.'

On Rich Alexis Complimenting Backup RBs 'He wanted a rest. He's a good team guy. I think he thought those kids ran well. The running game stayed pretty effective all the way through the game. But I think he played so many snaps against Ohio State he's tired.'

On Starting Tailback and Fullback 'I think Rich (Alexis) is pretty established, pretty clear-cut the guy. He's the starting tailback. Zach (Tuiasosopo) played very well for not having played and really only having Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday to practice with the first offense. He's been on the scout team all of training camp so I thought Zach played very well for very little playing time. And I think he gave us a boost and he gave us some energy and I think he went in there and hit some people and moved the ball himself running the ball and catching the ball out of the backfield. So Zach gave us a nice lift.'

On Offensive Line 'Looked okay, looked fine. I'm not saying anything surprising but we're going to play a lot better defenses than that. We've still got a ways to go and now we've got a spot that we need to solidify in there. But the play was better.'

On Cody Pickett's Passing to Third Receivers 'I have no sense he has any rapport with anybody in slot yet. I thought probably during the week of practice Cody looked the best with Isaiah (Stanback) in there. Isaiah was the fastest kid who had the ability to avoid getting jammed, and that pick that Cody threw the other day, our slot receiver had he gotten off the jam he would have been wide, wide, wide open in the middle of the field and he's just a youngster so Cody ended up waiting and waiting for Charles (Frederick) and by that time Charles' route had really closed. So I don't know that he's comfortable with them. I think he's pretty comfortable with Joe Toledo. I thought he threw a beautiful ball to Joe down the middle of the field and I thought Joe made a terrific catch. So I think he's more comfortable with Joe Toledo than the third wide receiver. But I think he's real comfortable throwing the ball in the backfield to Rich (Alexis) and Zach (Tuiasosopo). And he's obviously pretty comfortable throwing to number 1 and number 10.'

On Isaiah Stanback's Role 'Oh, I think it could expand a lot and still not take away from his quarterback reps. Because I still see him as a real dimension player at quarterback. But while Cody (Pickett) is still the quarterback at Washington I'd like to get Isaiah on the field because he's a terrific athlete. And the one thing Isaiah gives you when he's running around as a receiver is that he knows the route from a quarterback standpoint, which I think gives him a little bit different, or better idea exactly what we're trying to do because he knows where he wants the guy to be in the pattern in the route with the read, particularly if you're reading the coverage and breaking the route off, he knows from that standpoint.'

On Isaiah Stanback's Hands 'Well I don't know if he's done a lot of catching but he's a real fine baseball player and he never drops a snap. He caught those two pitches the other day so I think his hands are fine. He made some really nice catches during the week over the middle, a few of them deep.'

On Isaiah Stanback's Backup QB Role 'No he's not clearly number 3. He's 2.a or 2.b. I play both those guys. We have two backup quarterbacks. We don't have a clear 2 or a clear 3. I'm pretty sure I know what I'd do if Cody got hurt. I'm 99.9% sure what I'd do and how we'd play. Let's just hope I don't have to do it.'

On Defensive Pressure 'Terry Johnson does a nice job getting upfield. I see him in the backfield a lot. I think it's important that we continue to stress that and work on that. We're going to play some real prolific passing attacks down the road. In fact, everybody in our league seems to be prolific throwing the ball so we're going to have to find a way to pressure some folks.'

On Evan Benjamin Solidifying Safety Spot 'He seems to, but I think Owen Biddle will always compete for playing time. And I think that's important at getting him playing time, too.'

On Running Pitch Plays 'We run a pitch play. I think we ran three top pitches in the day. And we'll keep running it and get better at it. Some defenses are easier to line it up and run it against. Against these guys we found a way to get out there. Ohio State is a little bit different. Ohio State was not going to give you that play as much.'

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