Coach and Player Quotes from 2009 Pac-10 Football Media Day

July 30, 2009

Arizona State head coach Dennis Erickson

Opening Statement:
'We are coming off a season that is very disappointing for us as we were 5-7. It was unacceptable for us, but we are excited about this season. We are excited about where we are at. We were very young last year, particularly on the offensive front. We played a lot of young players that are back. What was an achilles heel for us last year could be strength for us this year. When you are coming off a season that wasn't what you hoped it would be it kind of puts a fire in the coaching staff and the team. We have had a good summer and we are looking forward to the fall.'

On playing at Georgia:
'That's an exciting time for our team to have the opportunity to go down and play in the south. Those of you that have been down there know that it is a religion. It's going to be very exciting for our football team.'

On linebacker Mike Nixon:
'He signed a professional baseball contract out of high school. Mike is what our program is all about. He's been around. He's an outstanding student. He's great for our football team. He is competitive and knows what it is all about.'

On the team rallying to bounce back from last season:
'There definitely has. We were very disappointed about what happened, but that motivates you. Every year is a new year.'

On Pac-10 teams this season:
'This league is incredible from top to bottom. You better bring your `A' game. It is the only conference that plays everyone. It's difficult.'

Arizona State linebacker Mike Nixon

On the running backs in the Pac-10:
'I don't think you can rank them one through five. They all kind of have different styles. Jahvid Best is the home run threat. On any given play he can go 80 yards. Jacquizz Rodgers is a little guy, but he pounds and pounds all game. Same thing with Toby Gerhart. You know you better bring your lunch pail and work hat to the job otherwise he is going to run all over you.'

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