Feb. 29, 2012
MODERATOR Jeff Van Raaphorst (AKA 1987 ROSE BOWL MVP: FROM HERE ON OUT)
Hi, this is Jeff Van Raaphorst. I'd like to welcome everyone to the first ever Fan Forum with head football coach, Todd Graham. This is an exclusive event for season ticket holders that gives you a chance to speak directly with Coach Graham and get an inside look at the team as they prepare for spring ball in the 2012 Season. Couple of things to keep in mind, to route this call, you can press star 3 to speak to a Sun Devil Athletic Staff Member and have the chance to ask your question to Coach Graham directly. If in anytime during the call you are disconnected you can call back at 1-877-229-8493 and enter ID number 19543. That will put you back in the call. Once again if you want a chance to talk to Coach Graham, press star 3 now. Keep in mind there are screeners that are going to be trying to get to everyone. They'll do their best to get to you as soon as they can but we have over 500 people already and the numbers are growing rapidly. We'll try to get all the questions in a short period of time but understand that we're not going to be able to get all of them. If you'd like to ask a question, call star 3. At this time, I'd like to bring in Coach Graham, Sun Devil head football coach. Welcome Coach.
Coach Todd Graham: Well Jeff, I'm excited. I'm excited to get the opportunity to visit with our season ticket holders, and to let them know how much we as a team value their support and just how sincere they are in our quest for a championship. I'm looking forward to spending some time with them tonight.
1987 ROSE BOWL MVP: I'm going to take our first question from Arthur Garcia. Arthur Garcia is a 28-year season ticket holder and he has a question about discipline.
Arthur Garcia: Coach, last season at some critical games, great defensive and offensive plays were voided by penalties. It appears to be caused by the lack of discipline. What steps are you taking to fix this problem?
Coach Todd Graham: It's what you do every day. On the field, players have to have a tremendous amount of self-discipline and they need to understand just how important that is. We think discipline is born through relationships, relationships that are based on standards and accountabilities in your program. It's how you do anything and how you do everything. It's the little things that we do every day. I know you heard me talk about our standards and values that we have for our players on the field, off the field, in the classroom, and in the community. So it's a daily focus on doing things the right way and raising the standard. Nobody goes out on the field and tries to get a penalty. Penalties are brought about through careless acts and just not being focused. You can have those careless acts in all areas of your life, but you have got to make sure that you're 100%, 24 hours a day focused on being disciplined. I believe in hard work and investment. That is the key to developing discipline.
1987 ROSE BOWL MVP: Our next call is from Tim Grady. Tim has been a season ticket holder for 20 years. He has a question about fan interest.
Tim Grady: Coach, we really like what you've done with reaching out to the former players and getting them involved. We also love the idea of students deciding what uniform to be worn for the next game or for one of the games this year. What is the next change that you see that will bring Sun Devil nation closer together, besides of course winning?
Coach Todd Graham: Somebody asked me today, `how are you going to fill up that stadium?' I said, `well I'm going to shake 74,000 hands'. I think it's the key. I've got 100 days coming up that I'm going to be out meeting people. I want them to know how honored I am to be their coach. How honored our team is to represent this great state, this university, and this valley. I think the key is getting out and competing for peoples support. That is what we talk to our players about, that they represent something bigger than themselves and I firmly believe that it's the little things and just taking the effort to get out and to meet people. Shake their hand. I think it takes very little to get people to come out and support. But if you stay locked in your office all the time, you don't get out. Every student here, its their football team. That's why we want to involve them in game day by picking which uniform we wear. That was a popular deal last year. We wanted them to know this is their team and we represent them whether you are a student, fan, alumni, or letterman. We talk to kids everyday about giving respect and honoring the great responsibility we have in representing this program in a championship manner.
1987 ROSE BOWL MVP: Let's go to Daniel Wise. He's been a four-year season ticket holder.
Daniel Wise: When you were first hired you talked about the high-octane offense you wanted to bring. What is the big change you're going to make in order to make it more high octane?
Coach Todd Graham: We have some special plays that we run over and over. We have about 20 plays. They're special plays that what a lot of people call trick plays. We will have that element in our offense, but our offense is very different from that stand point. We're a run play-action pass team. We are a downhill physical football team. To win championships means playing great defense and we want to run the football with great efficiency. It obviously involves great plays by the tight end or by the two backs in the back field. I think you have to have those types of formations. We will be really different from the standpoint of how we run the football and then we'll chuck that thing vertical down the field. The whole idea is to create explosive plays and I think that's what people want to see. They want to see a dynamic that is a very diverse and unique approach and attack. Our offense has been one of the most prolific in the country in the last 5 years. The biggest difference is they threw the ball and did a great job I think. We will be a lot more physical running the football.
Daniel Wise: When you talk about high-octane and number of plays, how many plays would you like to run from an offensive standpoint per game, and if you had your druthers, what would be your run pass range that you would like to see if you had to target those numbers to be successful?
Coach Todd Graham: We are trying to run 80 plus plays a game. We've done that in the last five years. The key is if you pass the ball every time, you're going to wind up with 80 plus plays on defense. So we've got to be able to run the ball efficiently. We've been somewhere around 60, 40 is a great balance for us but there are games we've thrown it 75% of the time. We're going to take what the defense gives us. If you're going to be a run play action pass team, you need to run a little bit more. We're going to run around 4,000 yards passing a year and the key is executing explosive plays. We want to go no huddle. We are not out to trick anyone. It's about our training. Our players will tell you that we're going to work harder than anybody in the country and I think you can outwork people. We are trying to create a fifth quarter so when we're sitting there and we're on play 80, the opponent's defense is not used to playing that many snaps. We want to play somewhere around 65 to 70 plays maximum on defense and that's what we've averaged. We averaged 67 plays on defense and 82 plays on offense. If you can't run the ball efficiently, then it drives up how many plays that you run on defense. You can't play the miss snaps.
1987 ROSE BOWL MVP: I'm big for running the ball, especially in the red zone. You have to be able to pound it in there. Let's go to Jerry Oliver. He's been watching Sun Devil Football since 1956.
Jerry Oliver: During the Kush era but not lately, it seems like the teams are not getting better towards the end of the year. In the last 8 years, it seems the team hasn't gotten better as the season progresses.
Coach Todd Graham: Well that's one of the big focuses that we have and it's not how you start, it's how you finish. Championships are won in November and in the first week in December. Each week will be very critical. Every championship team I've ever been involved in has been one that has gotten better every single week. I think that goes back to the training, it goes back to the discipline, and it goes back to the unity and the synergy that you have on the team. You have to continue to work hard every day and develop and understand that. Conditioning plays a huge part in getting better. That's why we talk to our players about eating right, sleeping right and living right. You don't want to be worn out in November. I think it has everything to do with training, conditioning, and committing to getting better every day.
1987 ROSE BOWL MVP: Let's go up to Lauren Oliver, a 16-year season ticket holder.
Lauren Oliver: I've been particularly concerned about just how much we have made use of the shotgun formation, especially over the last several years. I know that some folks would have us believe that the swing pass to the back is as good as a run play. I look at it more in terms of perhaps we just don't have the type of offensive line necessary to run the ball from conventional formation so I'm interested in your thoughts on how much we'll be making use of the shotgun formation and on the flip side of the ball, what is your philosophy in terms of the defensive scheme. Are we looking primarily at a 4-3 or a 3-4? What are your thoughts there?
Coach Todd Graham: Well you've made some good points. As a former defensive coordinator, I can tell you that one of the things that I have a problem with in regards to the shotgun style offense is the inability to run the football downhill. We're in the shotgun an awful lot, probably 80 plus percent of the time, but we have two backs in the backfield and really almost like an eye formation from the shotgun. We are a downhill come off the ball, knock people off the ball type of an attack. I think the team that physically whips the other team is the one that wins and so you have to have a downhill physical approach to the running game. Your offensive lineman can't be in a 2-point stance the whole game and be a physical football team. I don't think you can consistently win if you can't run the football. We are going to be a team that runs the football downhill. Defensively, my philosophy is that we are going to be strong inside defensively at the defensive tackle positions. I think you'll see us playing a little bit more of a 4-3 scheme but you'll see the defensive team standing up. We're a multiple defense, utilizing both the 4-3 and 3-4. You'll see us giving some bare and blitz and attack. We're an attack style team. We're going to put a lot more pressure with our corners and our number one goal is to stop the run and impact the quarterback. That is the key in this conference. You have to impact the quarterback.
1987 ROSE BOWL MVP: Let's go out to Kelly McLain. Kelly has a question about longevity.
Kelly McLain: I have been a season ticket holder for about 25 years and seen the coaches' come and go. You have jumped around a lot. I love your old school style approach. Buffy Bowden, Bear Bryan, and the late George Turnell all stayed at their respective universities. They have won championships and they have won conference titles. If you win Rose Bowls, conference titles, and National Championships, you're going to be paused by the NFL and major universities. I know you can't tell the future, I know your family loves it out here and you love it out here. Do you see yourself being an old school coach and staying with this university for years and years?
Coach Todd Graham: I really believe this is a major university. I think this is one of the top 25 programs in the country. I think this program has tremendous potential. Going from Rice to Tulsa was a major promotion, from Tulsa to Pitt was a major promotion, and I can tell you that the decision to go was probably the biggest mistake that I'd made because I went into situations where I was out of my element. It was a different part of the country. I made that decision to move up to the BCS level. I am a competitor. You want to be in a place where you get the chance to win Rose Bowls, win National Championships, and to compete for conference championships. This is the best job I've ever had in my life and I'm extremely motivated and committed. I'm firmly committed to being here. If my wife and I picked where we would like to live, I'd be right here in this valley. I think there's some uniqueness to the opportunity here. There are 4.5 million people in only one major university right here in Phoenix. I think that's pretty unique. I want to win Rose Bowls. I want to win national championships. I want to win Pac -12 Championships. I don't see why you'd go anywhere else. I can tell you this; I don't have any desire whatsoever to coach in the NFL. I'm an old school guy. They wouldn't probably respond very well to me in the NFL. I can tell you I'm firmly committed and all I can do is prove that by being here and winning championships and showing the people that I'm committed to being here.
1987 ROSE BOWL MVP: The Sun Devil Club is going to be doing a membership drive, and the goal is 25,000 members. How important is that for the football program and the athletic program in general?
Coach Todd Graham: Well it's vital. I did this to support the Sun Devil Club and I want to encourage everybody to get involved. I want to tell the people that are involved how much we appreciate it. It's essential to the success of our program. The community backing meets the needs of our student-athletes from a scholarship standpoint and from a recruiting standpoint. We are fortunate to have the funds to run a first class program. It's the life-blood of our program. It's so important that they're involved. I encourage them to get out and to join the Sun Devil Club and be a part of it because you're needed.
1987 ROSE BOWL MVP: One thing that I've heard every year is the effect of a packed stadium on a recruit's mind and what the perception of the university is in. That's what we're talking about with 25,000 members of Sun Devil Club. From your perspective recruiting, how much easier or harder is it when you walk in the stadium that's full over half full?
Coach Todd Graham: That's one of the reasons why I'm on this phone. That's one of the reasons why I'm out in the community. I want to compete for people's support because it's vital. The hardest thing to do in college football is to win on the road. You walk into a place that's packed. It's a very difficult atmosphere. Perception is reality and when they walk in, and see a packed Sun Devil stadium, no doubt, it's one of the biggest things that I think impacts young people in recruiting. And I think it makes the players play better on that field. I really do.
1987 ROSE BOWL MVP: Mike Lozano from Tempe Fire has a great question and it is a compare and contrast question about how you compare your offense and defense against Rich Rodriguez's.
Mike Lozano: We are Sun Devil fans. We've been part of Sun Devil community for a long time now. You coached with Coach Rodriguez at West Virginia. We want to know what's the difference between our offense and his offense? Also, what is the biggest difference between our defense and his defense?
Coach Todd Graham: First of all, I appreciate what you guys do for the community and risking your lives in order to protect the people. That's one of the things that we talk to our guys about everyday is being a giver, being a person that serves. So thank you for doing that. When it comes to our offense, it's very different. We are looking to get in place every 15 seconds but the biggest difference is just the private complexity in the passing game and the difference in the style of quarterback that's playing. Defensively, we play a lot more 4-3 front, which they don't want to play. A lot of press corner is what we will play. There will be more of a 3-3-5 scheme and a lot of single safety coverage.
Mike Lozano: That sounds great! We appreciate everything you've done for us so far. Your recruiting has been extraordinary. The last regiment did not hit Arizona as far as your doing now. We just want to say thank you and Phoenix Fire Department is behind you 100% and we look forward to the game next fall.
1987 ROSE BOWL MVP: I would now like to bring in this special young Sun Devil Brandon Magee and want to get his perspective on the upcoming season. Brandon is a senior line backer and he's going to be joining us now.
Brandon Magee: Hey. I'd like to thank all the season ticket holders for all your support. It's great to see the seats filled up and have a great crowd atmosphere. I'm just here to let you know that since day one that Coach Graham got here, he preaches about accountability, discipline, and speaking victory. Those are three major things that are going to help us win championships, not in the future but starting today. In the classrooms and in real life situations Coach Graham is helping us become from boys to men and there is going to be some big improvements.
1987 ROSE BOWL MVP: Brandon, I went through a similar coaching change that you've gone through. I had a pro style coach leave and Coach Graham's friend John Cooper came from Tulsa. It is hard on the upper classmen and you've been in different systems. From your perspective as an elder classmen, what has Coach Graham instilled and why is it going to work?
Brandon Magee: I feel it's going to work because we all want to buy in and win championships. We're all focused on one goal in becoming a brotherhood and just becoming a representative of what ASU football is all about. Respecting everywhere you go, everything you do, and having pride in everything. I'm pretty sure all of the team is buying in and we're going to win championships here.
1987 ROSE BOWL MVP: You talk about the team and the brotherhood. It seems like the great teams that I've seen, that I have been part of, as much as the head coach wanted to police them in discipline I think the head coach sets the culture and the players have to respond and incorporate it and live that culture and discipline. I would guess that there's probably some talks that you have to have with some players because really they have two choices. Either get on board or get on the dock. Tell us about those conversations.
Brandon Magee: The conversations are simple. If you're on board to win the championship, follow what coach Graham is preaching because he's want to win the championship. Everybody is still so strong here and we believe that ASU can be a powerhouse every year. We're going to start it today. We will start this year and we will go win the championship this year. That's all I'm thinking. I'm just thinking of speaking victory everyday.
1987 ROSE BOWL MVP: We're going to go out to Scott Sezate in Mesa. He has a question about conditioning.
Scott Sezate: I grew up in that stadium. I'm 47 years old. I think I've been attending since I was 13. In the years past, the Kush era, they were a second-half team and it has been very apparent these last few years that our defense was put in on an island. With such a quick strike offense, how is the defense going to be conditioned to be on the field as long as it is going to be?
Coach Todd Graham: That's one of the things that I manage during the game. That's when I speak to the point of running the football. When you run the football, the clock runs and even though we're a no huddle fast paced offense, that clock is still running. We have to manage the clock. We can't go out and play 80 plus plays on defense. I don't care how good you are. I don't care what your conditioning is. You're not going to play good defense if you're playing that many snaps. I can tell you that I do believe that we can make great strides in our conditioning and how well we're trained. We're a no huddle football team so yes, in being that, we're going to play more plays on defense but it can't be unrealistic. Our guys are working extremely hard. I wouldn't go anywhere and take any job without our strength coach. He's the best in the country in my opinion.
1987 ROSE BOWL MVP: Brandon, you're living the conditioning. Talk about some of the differences in the conditioning.
Brandon Magee: The main difference is every workout is different and the reps are higher. Our final reps are 82% of our maximum, which is a lot when it comes to bench pressing, squatting, and power cleans. We're maximizing our strength and the main thing we're focusing on is being explosive. That's how you get explosive plays and that's how the fans start roaring. That is how we get more people interested on what we're doing on the field. So the more explosive we are the better we'll be.
1987 ROSE BOWL MVP: I want to go out to Marty Laurel. He has a question about building character.
Marty Laurel: We've been talking about discipline and building character which sounds great for those of us who are fed up with the lack of discipline and with the last coaching staff. We used to have a coach who was all about discipline and players responded to that, but that was a different day and time. How do you get the kids of today to respond to strict rules of discipline and behavior on and off the field?
Todd Graham: I really believe that there is a difference. I don't believe the kids are different. I think our standards have changed. I think what we're willing to accept what has changed. I'm old school in that regard but things are different and back when we played, I can tell you this. I was scared to death of most of my coaches. They motivated me through fear and it worked. I think the key is the relationship. I think you have to be able to get to know your players. You have to show them that you care about them. It's much more dynamic. It's much more of a challenge. You look at Jim Harbaugh. The key is adapting to each young man and motivating each person. The key is your staff. One person cannot do that. You have to have a staff that does it. They know if you're organized. They know if you know what you're talking about and they know if you have a genuine passion for what you're doing. I don't believe that we have to lower our standards. The kids want to be disciplined. They want to have high character. The key is it's a lot more difficult to get there and you have to win their heart and you have to build that relationship and inspire them to do it instead of making them do it.
1987 ROSE BOWL MVP: We got a couple of questions regarding the quarterback situation from Bryan and then Fast Eddie. Eddie's been around for a long time.
Eddie Sandidge: We lost our senior quarterback, and I understand we've got a couple of youngsters now.
Coach Todd Graham: I can tell you that I've got a great deal of confidence at that position. You know we've got three young men that will be an intense, fierce competition. Each one of them is very diverse in their talent but all three have great character, great work ethic, and have great leadership skills. It's going to be very fun to watch. We're looking forward to this spring and looking forward to how they respond under the heat of the battle.
Eddie Sandidge: Well I think experience is overrated. It's talent that's out.
Coach Todd Graham: I think that talent is very important. I think that experience is important but I do think that the key is how they approach the situation. I like the fact that I've got three new guys to the system and that I can tell how bad they want this job. The key in our offense is to take what the defense gives you and be disciplined.
Eddie Sandidge: I have a question for Brandon. Now that you've had a chance to play against a lot of good quarterbacks in practice, what do you see out of these young guys because you see it in a different level than we all do?
Brandon Magee: We have talent coming from all three of them and they're very determined to start. This is a great job opening. It's a great chance to become leaders of the team and they're starting young which is really good. They have really good coaching from these new coaches and I'm excited to see who comes out of this.
1987 ROSE BOWL MVP: I want to go out to Enrique Martinez. He's calling all the way from New Mexico. He has a question about special teams.
Enrique Martinez: I know you guys decide which coach is going to be assigned to what task, but who's going to coach the special teams on the defensive side?
Coach Todd Graham: Joe Lorig will coordinate all the special teams. I'm very involved as the head football coach with the special teams, so I'll be heavily involved with them as well. Coach Ron West will be predominantly in charge of our kick-off cover. Our defense wants to be in charge of the kick off cover because obviously when they're kicking off, they want to pin him back down in there because you got a long field. Coach West and the defense staff will coach the kick off cover as well as the punt team. Coach Porter, our offensive running back coach will coach the kick off return along with the offensive staff. Joe Lorig will handle our PAT field goals. Our offensive line handles our PAT and field goal blocking and Coach Randolph, our defense coordinator, coaches PAT field goal block. We really divide them up as offense and defensive special teams but every single coach on our staff is going to coach special teams and that's somewhat unique. I'm very involved with Joe Lorig in the game plan part of it.
Enrique Martinez: Okay one real quick question now. You have to promise to beat them Cats.
Coach Todd Graham: I understand that you can win every one of them and lose that one and it's an unsuccessful season. Rest assure the game will be a fierce competition, and we will come ready for that game and be fired up about it. We know what it means.
1987 ROSE BOWL MVP: Here's a question from Tom Daniel about Camp Tontozona.
Tom Daniel: I know the importance of Camp Tontozona. I think that to return to Camp Tontozona is a very important thing to do. I think it develops team spirit. Here's an opportunity for the coach to have all the guys at the same place 24/7.
1987 ROSE BOWL MVP: All right Coach, give us your feedback on Camp Tontozona. You had a chance to go tour it. What are your thoughts on it?
Coach Todd Graham: First of all I had a great trip to Yuma. We saw a couple of players there at Arizona. I'm maybe the only head football coach that went to Yuma. I enjoyed my visit down there and got two great linebackers out there. On Camp Tontozona, I think that it's a very important tradition for ASU. It's very close to the hearts of our former players and that's something that I think is important. I think we should respect that and I can tell you that we're working very hard. I want to be able to go up there for four to six days. It's got to be humane. I mean we have to be able to have running water and all that stuff up there and I think you know the area of luxury. I like the idea of going up there and roughing it. I like the idea of trying to build relationships and getting to know each other. I like the idea. We're going to work very hard to make that happen. We have some challenges with summer school going to the 14th and there isn't Internet. We need some guys to help us out by joining the Sun Devil Club. Here's the last thing I'll tell you about Camp Tontozona. Last time we went, we were 10-2. I think the overall record is 174-47-1. There are a lot of factors and things. They're positive about that and when I was at Tulsa I would take our guys up to Ford Gibson. We stayed in the military berks out there. It's a great opportunity to team build. It's going to be hard but we need a little bit of help in order to make it happen. There's no announcement that has been made but I can tell you that it's very important to us. It's very important to our players, former players, and it's very important to our administration. So we're working hard on it.
Tom Daniel: I'm really glad to hear that. One more question for Coach and for Brandon. Are we going to tackle this year?
Brandon Magee: Yes we're going to tackle this year. We're going to be mean out there. I'll tell you that man. I'm mad right now. Just thinking about that. Yeah we'll tackle.
1987 ROSE BOWL MVP: Coach, you talk about some of the players that have been big surprises to you this year. Give us an idea of what you're seeing on the inside about some players?
Coach Todd Graham: I can tell you what I've observed is watching from last year and I can tell you that the thing that sticks out to me is we've got some really explosive guys. Cameron Marshall is a guy that really impresses me offensively. Obviously looking at tape on this young man he was playing linebacker. Brandon Magee really impresses me. They play with a great deal of passion and that's the way it's supposed to be played. I'm very impressed with our interior defensive line. I think we've got some guys in the back end. In the cornerback position, Darby is a kid that impresses me. I don't want to keep pointing out, singling out. We're really concerned about depth at safety and then obviously depth at linebacker but we've got some guys that are very impressive. I think we're fast. The skill players can really run and we're only going to get faster. These guys are doing a lot of running and working extremely hard in developing and getting faster. I'm evaluating everything based on last year and what I've seen on film. So we're excited. I think this team is fast and that's the kind of teams I like to coach.
1987 ROSE BOWL MVP: Let's go out to San Francisco, California. Chuck Michaels, you have a question about talent level.
Chuck Michaels: My question has to do with assessing the talent level that you're inheriting relative to the other premier teams in the Pac-12 like Stanford and Oregon. The other question I have is on accountability. You talked so much about it. How many wins do you think you and your coaching staff should be accountable for over the next three years for the people on this phone call?
Coach Todd Graham: I'm going to ask them to work harder than any other team in the country. They can go to 119 other schools and it'll be easier than here on the field, off the field, in the classroom and in the community. We're going to ask an awful lot out of our players. So the expectations and accountability, it can't be anything less than winning championships and that's what I came here to do. I've got a tremendous amount of confidence in the people here. They want to win. You can't have a good attitude and expect to win the Pac-12. You got to have a spectacular attitude. You can't give good effort and expect to win the Pac-12. You have to go out on the field and you have to have 11 guys that love each other. They're going to lay it on the line for each other. I believe in our players. I believe in the staff and I believe in what we're doing, and the expectations are what they are. Our program is only about winning championships.
1987 ROSE BOWL MVP: Let's go to David Granillo. David Granillo has a question about Spring Football.
David Granillo: I've been a season ticket holder for 16 years. I have missed one home game during that stance. First off I just want to say thank you very much for reaching out. We appreciate you making an effort to not only bring back the rich history and tradition, but also reaching out to former players. It means a lot to myself and I'm sure it means a lot to people on this call that you're making such an effort.
Coach Todd Graham: Well I think that's important. One of the things I really believe strongly is that you guys built this place. We wouldn't have the opportunity we have without them. I've got a lot of respect for the former players. The former players put the blood, sweat, and tears into this place. I'm in the process of raising money. We want to put a historical wall on the third floor with every decade written on the wall. I want every team picture up on the wall. So when you walk down the hallway the wall will speak history.
David Granillo: I know you've been able to sit with the players and watch them on film, but you haven't seen them in live action. In the coming weeks during the practices, what are going to be your goals? What are you looking to accomplish? What exactly will make Spring Ball a success?
Coach Todd Graham: Bottom line, our identity. Who are we going to be as a football team? How will we respond to diversity on the field? That's what we're trying to do in the spring is establish our identity as a football team and find out our style. How we're going to play is number one. Number two, get the guys in the right spots and get fundamentally better.
1987 ROSE BOWL MVP: I want to get to a gentleman that does great things for the Sun Devils. He's president of the White Mountain Sun Devil Club, and he has a great question about exposure. Ted Cesarano from White Mountain Sun Devil Club; what is your question?
Ted Cesarano: I just want to tell you from our side of the club up in the White Mountain that we appreciate you coming out to meet our picnic grand from June 22nd to 23rd.
Coach Todd Graham: I'm looking forward to it.
Ted Cesarano: It's a great event. There are plenty of people that are attending, having a great time, and I wish there was an opportunity for everyone to have the chance to meet you. My question is; are we going to have more of these types of forums not only by telephone but also on the radio? Are you planning on informing us periodically on your plan going forward and the direction the team is headed?
Coach Todd Graham: Absolutely! I'm going to speak to every student organization about every fan organization that there is. I want to go out and I want them to know who their coach is and let them know what ASU football is all about. So I do think that it's very important and then obviously we're in the process. This is something I thought was really a neat deal tonight to reach out to our season ticket holders and to the people that are loyal to Sun Devil Football and just tell them how proud I am to be their coach and how hard we're going to work to make them proud. I want to let them know that I do value their opinion and what they think about our program.
Ted Cesarano: I'm looking forward from our standpoint in listening to you on different radio stations and TV. Thank you for being a part of our White Mountain Steak Fry and we're looking forward to having you up there and representing a lot of Sun Devils.
1987 ROSE BOWL MVP: Duane Hutchison from Laveen, Arizona has a question about fan expectations.
Duane Hutchison: I know that a lot of people want to call and ask you about offense and defense, but for me as a fan, my question is what can we do to help the culture and what can we do to really build ASU football? We want to be successful, and I feel we need do our part as well.
Brandon Magee: Well I can answer that. Just maintain a positive energy. As players we like to hear the fans tweet us or write on our Facebook page: `keep it up in the weight room' or `good luck on the next season'. We love that because we play for you guys. We're there to entertain you guys and give you guys a show. I'm going to let you know one thing. We will not let you down and we will have a whole bunch of guys going out there 100%. So if you guys have our backs, it is going to be a great season!
Coach Todd Graham: I'd challenge them. I challenge our players' everyday to work with passion. We want to challenge our fans to speak victory everyday, and to get involved and join the Sun Devil Club. I encourage everyone to come to the spring game. We're going to get out in the community and we're going to work hard for you but I'm not going to ask our players, our fans to do anything that we're not going to do. We are going to work together for a common cause. What you need to understand is that just like when we talk about our team, one coach can't do it. He's got to have a great staff and he's got to have great players. One player can't do it. Every team needs a fan base. They need a passionate fan base that speaks victory. That's what I tell our players everyday. Every day you need to get up, stay focused, and everyday be a giver not a taker. Let me walk out here and be a champion today with everything that I do and man I have a passion about it and that's what I want. I want all our fans to be passionate in everything that they're doing. You do have an impact on this team and we need the very best from our fans.
1987 ROSE BOWL MVP: Thank you Duane! All right that was the last question we're going to take but I wanted to give you the results of our poll. We had 41% of the respondents voted that is should be a GOLD out!!
1987 ROSE BOWL MVP: I want to thank all the fans for calling in. This is a unique event. First time that we've done this. We understand that we didn't get to a lot of you. We tried. We tried to have it very interactive. Please leave a voice message at the prompt and we'll do our best to get your questions answered. I want to encourage everyone to come out for the spring game. You can set the tone right there. If you want to show that you have Sun Devil pride, be at that spring game and I want to encourage everybody that's on this call. We just think mathematically. We had 500 to 1,000 people on this call, but lets say you all bring 2 or 3 people. We just added a lot of seats. Coach, any parting thoughts and then Brandon, I'd like you end it because you're going be on the field. You get to end the show buddy.
Coach Todd Graham: Well more than anything. I want our fans to know how honored we are to represent them and we're going to work very hard. Work with a passion every day to honor them. We're going to put a team on that field that will represent them with class, character, and toughness and we're going to play to the end of every whistle. I'm looking forward to shaking your hands. I want us to start a record for the most people at the spring game. I want us to get you to think, something special is going on there in that valley at ASU. We need them to step up like never before and know that we appreciate them tremendously.
Brandon Magee: Oh man. I'd love to see you guys show up to the spring game. It's nice to look over and have some fans over there cheering us on during practice. I mean that's a big sign. I'm here to promise you that both defense and offense, nobody will be jogging on and off the field. It will be 100% everything we do. Everything we do, if you're not 100% you're off the field. I'll be the first guy to tell you to get off the field because I'm trying to win the Championship and that's what we're going to do starting now.
1987 ROSE BOWL MVP: Well you can't have much more passion than that. Thanks for joining us on the Fan Forum. Thanks for being a Sun Devil!