Aug. 6, 2011
Head Coach Dennis Erickson
On quarterback Brock Osweiler's potential to start:
"There's no question. Even from the start when he first came here, we knew he had the talent to get there. Obviously as you grow in your position, you get better all of the time. It started against UCLA, and continued against UA, but it really took over in the winter and the spring. He's really taken charge of our football team in the summer time. He's a different guy out there, not only as a quarterback but also as a leader, which to me is a key. The qualities at that position are so important. If you look at the outstanding players that have played that position over the years and the guys in our league, not only are they good players, but they're leaders of their team and competitive. I really believe in him and have a lot of trust in him, and I know that our team does, and that's probably the most important thing."
On the growth of the offense:
"All of our players offensively are much more comfortable, having been in this offense for a second year, particularly at quarterback. Even Taylor Kelly, who was in it last year - you can see him grow in the offense because he's been around it a little more as a possible back up. The other good thing is having Steven Threet around out there on the field as a new coach. Steven can relate to some of those things that we probably can't. He understands all of that stuff. That really makes a difference."
On what is expected from defensive tackle Will Sutton:
"We expect what we expected a year ago. He's a penetration player with great quickness. I don't know that we had that at defensive tackle. Lawrence [Guy] is the guy that played along the line of scrimmage, but what Will brings is penetration, and he frees other people up. He would have started last year if it weren't for the academic issues that he had. So far he's looking extremely good. He's the type of guy that you need at that particular position."
On the progress of running back Deantre Lewis:
"Deantre will be here next week, from what I understand. He's getting better all of the time. There's a chance that he'll play, but I'll be able to tell more next week once the doctors see him and get him his tests. But I'm a lot more optimistic than I was three weeks ago."
On running back Cameron Marshall:
"I believe Cameron might be the most underrated running back in our league. He's gotten bigger, stronger, and faster, and he catches the football. For us to win, he's going to have to have a good year. He has to run the football a little bit more. But he's a combination of a guy that's very strong and big, but also has great speed. He's a guy that kind of gets lost on the radar for whatever reason, but he's a good football player."
On the progress of linebacker Vontaze Burfict:
"He's been a leader all winter and spring and summer, and he did a really good job of leading out there so far in the five practices we've had. He understands the situation. It's hard not to read a newspaper or magazine without reading about it. But that's something he has to face, and we have to face it together. He's matured a lot, he really has. I think you have to go out and watch him at practice and see how hard he works and where he is. Does he still have a lot of fire? Oh yeah. Will he get a penalty or two during the season? Probably, I can't guarantee that. But if he gets them, it's because he's playing hard. He's a leader on defense just because of how he plays and the level that he plays at, and it carries over with everybody else."
"At receiver, they're both out there coaching right now. Hopefully they'll get back and play before the year is out. But TJ and Omar are out there doing a great job on the field. At receiver, we have depth. We have a lot of receivers who can step up and have stepped up at the corner situations. You don't replace guys like Omar or TJ. You bring guys in and they have to step up. That's what football is all about."
On measuring this year's team against previous teams:
"We've got talent. We've got speed, which we've been hoping for a long time. I felt like we had it last year, but we didn't take advantage of it like we probably should have. I like the attitude. Anytime you have as many seniors or guys that have played a bit as we have, and that experience, it really makes a difference. You can tell that in how they practice, and how they take care of each other and really come together as a team. I like this football team a lot. We've managed to be seen. We were 6-6 last year. I really like what they've done, and I feel like we can win a lot of games. But we have to go out and do it as a team. We just have to go out and play."
On goals for the season:
"Our bar is set. We talked about three goals. One is to win our division. If we can win the division, then we can get an opportunity to win the Pac-12. If we win the Pac-12, we have the chance to go to the Rose Bowl. But you have to take those things one at a time. That's what our goal is, and we feel like we have a chance to do that. This team doesn't talk a lot. They're very cautious of what they say, but they also understand that they work hard and have been through a lot of different things. They believe in each other and feel they can accomplish the goals I've talked about. If you try to look down that schedule, which is very difficult, you just kind of trudge along one game at a time and get better. But I feel like we have the talent, if we stay healthy, to compete for the goals we were talking about."
Quarterback Brock Osweiler
On team chemistry:
"Chemistry is really good right now. It wasn't like we really needed to build chemistry come camp; we really built that chemistry over the summer."On if he's ready:
"I'm ready to go, I've got a lot of talent around myself. I'm looking forward to that first game, I'm ready. It's my offense now, I need to be the leader of it and I need to perform on a daily basis. I can't take any days off."On the pressure of the preseason predictions:
"I love it. When the game is on the line I want to be the person making the decision. I'll take these guys into battle anywhere, any team in the country."On preparations for the upcoming year:
"This team has worked harder than any team I've ever been a part of. The mindset of this team is unbelievable right now. The confidence we have, the energy, the family atmosphere we've created around the building. We're going to go out there guns blazing and bring a storm behind it."On Junior Onyeali and the defensive line:
"Junior (Onyeali) comes off that edge pretty hard and fast, he's got a lot of power and a lot of speed. Our defensive ends and defensive tackles definitely put a lot of pressure on quarterbacks."On the offense now compared to last year:
"We're light years ahead. The first year of the offense last year we were trying to go as fast as we can. This year, we're able to go fast but understand what we're trying to do in certain situations. That's just getting more familiar with the offense."On the speed of the team:
"We've got speed across the board. That even goes down to the offensive line. The offensive line is big and athletic this year. They're a group that's been around for a couple of years now; they've got a lot of talent and a lot of athleticism. Across the board this offensive has a lot of talent."
Wide receiver Gerell Robinson
"We've had a lot of senior leadership. Everyone's done their share to get this offense going."On the team's mindset and goals:
"The only talk we've had is working hard and getting to New Orleans. As much as everyone wants to go to the Rose Bowl, I've been to California, I haven't been to New Orleans yet. That's our mindset to be honest with you, no disrespect to anyone in the Pac (12) but that's just how we feel and that's what this is destined to do."
Wide receiver Aaron Pflugrad
On what it takes to be a wide receiver:
"Playing wide receiver is a lot of mental. Sometimes the defensive back is going to get you, but you just have to keep at it. A lot of times people say playing wide receiver is about being big or fast, but it's really about being in the right spot at the right time and getting enough separation to catch the football."
On teammate Mike Willie:
"The things he does are really impressive. He'll run routes and the quarterback will throw him the ball and he'll just catch it behind his back. He seriously does it everyday."
Offensive lineman Bo Moos
On being a senior and playing his last season at ASU:
"It feels crazy and kind of bittersweet. It's just fun. It's a whole other thing, trying to do the little things, leadership wise. I've been more of a leader at camp, which is something I want to be more of."
On newcomers not knowing the ASU fight song:
"We came up with a rule because when I got here, it was no joke. Kids were scared to go to meals in case they got the fight song wrong. And now, for some reason, it's not as serious, so we're trying to bring it back. Until they get the fight song right, they have to wear these little cotton gray shorts and shirts with no helmet logo."
Linebacker Brandon Magee
On playing two sports (football and baseball) at ASU:
"I haven't had a vacation in seven years. I don't go home for the holidays. I don't see family. I just train. I live here [at the ICA building]. If they can handle that, you'll see a lot more people doing two sports, but I doubt it. Especially at a program like this."
On the difficulties of playing both sports:
"I have to see how far I can get in both sports. I believe in myself big time and I'm never going to stop until I'm forced to. I feel like I can do anything. I'll play volleyball next year if you guys want me to."
On playing another year of baseball at ASU:
"I don't go into the baseball season expecting anything. I feel that I have to work hard for everything I get and that's the same way for everybody on the team. The starters get pressure from the reserves, that's how loaded ASU baseball is."
On Vontaze Burfict and the officials:
"I believe he'll cut down on the penalties. He understands a lot more. People just have to realize that when you're in the heat of the moment, sometimes it just pours out."
Kicker Alex Garoutte
On how he has been training this off-season:
"We work out four days a week, and pretty much every day but Friday I'm out there kicking for about an hour and a half. I really worked on my onside kicks."
Safety Eddie Elder
On the secondary:
"It's really balanced. The first unit is going to separate itself, but everyone, from the second to the third unit, is working hard."
On the buzz surrounding Burfict:
"I think it's more of a positive situation this year. He's been trying to take a leadership role this year. When he says something, everyone pays attention, but his actions really speak for themselves."
On his personal goals for this season:
"I'm going to do my best and help out wherever I can. If I do that, then we'll be successful."