Quotes from Quarterback Rudy Carpenter's Press Conference
Sept. 3, 2007
On team's physical style of play
'Since Coach Erickson got here that's been the biggest thing he's tried to emphasize with our team is being really physical. He was very short in his pregame speech and said let's play so physical that this team and any other team never want to come back to play here. I think we did a good job of that on Saturday. Teams don't like to get hit like that, I know I don't.'
Overall assessment of game:
'I was a little worried. San Jose State is a good team. They had nine wins last season and I knew we had to come out and play fast and play hard. They're much better than NAU and some of the other teams we played last year, so I was a little worried about it. I feel like we played good overall on offense and we played really good on defense. We probably wouldn't have given up any points if we hadn't had that turnover in the middle of the field. On offense we ran the ball great and threw it average. We'll get better as the season gets on. We will get more efficient. If we can cut out the turnovers and penalties we'll be better.'
Confidence of team:
'With Coach Erickson he said that's one, we've got 12 more to go but the most important one is next week. Coach Erickson never looks past Colorado or whoever the game is against this week. He said good job to us and I think we knew it was a game we should have came out and won. We were just happy we played well but we know it's a long season to go and Colorado is a good team we've got next week.'
On the throwing game:
'It wasn't necessary average; we didn't throw the ball a whole lot. We didn't have to. I thought when we did throw we executed well and we did well. I think there were a couple of mistakes we made in picking up some blitzes and seeing some hot routes we were supposed to throw to. I made a few mistakes running around too much instead of just throwing the ball to the open guy or out of bounds.'
On the problem with the new play-calling system:
'We're going to start wearing the wristband at practice. We hadn't worked on it a whole lot with wearing it at practice. So I'm going to start wearing it with all the plays on it and getting used to calling it like that at practice. We made a couple of mistakes with the numbers but I was messing up a couple of the signals too.
'It's going to help out tremendously. Not only does it save energy for me but it gives me a chance to look at the defense longer. I'm not snapping the ball with 2 or on or three seconds on the play clock. I've got a lot of time to see what they're doing, change the play if I need to, do certain things so we're getting out of the huddle faster. We had very few glitzes but the few we had we had to waste timeouts which in a bigger or closer game could be very important.'
On Colorado's defense:
'I know they've got five starters back from last year. I think they got all their linebackers back and that was the best part of their team last year. They played us pretty well last year. We've got to come out and play the way we play football: run the ball and throw when we can throw.'
Overall status of the passing game:
'I think that the biggest worry was the passing game. We've been meeting with the wideouts a lot. I changed where we stay at the hotel so I can stay with the receivers and meet with them all throughout the day. I thought they did a great job. Mike Jones did well; Mike saw a few mistakes where he could get better on. I think Chris McGaha did a good job too. I wish I would have gotten the ball to him a couple more times. Overall we did well, Kerry [Taylor] did well and Kyle [Williams] did well. I think it was important for us to start well on throwing game to give the guys some confidence and prove we can throw the ball and be successful doing it when we want to. The passing game would have been better had we hit that deeper one down the middle. Once we get stuff like that fixed, I think we can be good.'
On the offensive line:
'Defense football is a lot easier to play when you have a new coaching staff. When you have a new coaching staff and system it's hard. No matter if you've got veteran quarterbacks, veteran running backs, veteran wide receivers. They're all learning a new system, new blocking styles new schemes. I thought they did a great job. We had 200 and something yards rushing. We only gave up one sack and I had very few pressures. I thought those guys did a great job. We rotated some of those guys too. I think Julius [Orieukwu] came in for Zach Krula and Richard Tuitu'u came in for Brandon Rodd and Sean [Lauvao] for Paul Fanaika. A lot of guys got experience and to be completely honest until I was watching the film I didn't even know they were rotating and I think that's a good thing.'
On this week's game against Colorado:
'I think Colorado is going to be a little bit better of a defensive football team. I think if we can establish our running game again like we did this week we can be good. But they are a better team so we're going to have to stay patient and we're probably not going to score on every possession like we did against San Jose St. We're probably going to have to use our passing game a little bit more. And if we do, I'm interested to see what happens when we do need to use it more and see if we can be as efficient and successful as we were in this game. Overall that's where the biggest stride is going to be. I am confident in those guys and in myself that we can do that.'
On Danny Sullivan:
'I thought Danny played really well. Danny's gotten so much better than last season, so much more confident in himself. I was really happy for him. He threw his first touchdown pass in his collegiate career. I know that was big for him since he's from the San Jose area. He asked me before the game if I can get him in there early and I think I came out 10 minutes before the third quarter was over so I was happy for him.'
On Colorado's defense:
'I haven't seen a whole lot of film on them yet but from what I know from last year I know their linebackers are good players and are coming back. I expect them to be a little bit stronger up front and more physical than San Jose St. was. Their linebackers are fast, physical players so I expect them to bring a little more than what we got last week. Their defensive backs are new so I think that's something that we might have to look at and see what we can do with that. They're a Big 12 team so they're going to be faster and physically stronger.'
On using the shotgun:
'The coaches like to keep it balanced but I hope we keep on using that. I hope we use it a lot more than we did because it's so much easier for me to throw out of the shotgun and see things. I hope we can make it a mainstay in our offense.'