Dec. 28, 2004
SAN FRANCISCO - The rain took a welcomed day off on Tuesday, leaving the Lobo football team to complete a sharp morning practice and enjoy the rest of the day off before heading to the Sony Metreon for a video game challenge. Head coach Rocky Long and seniors Claude Terrell and Josh Bazinet took part in the Emerald Bowl press conference, fielding questions from reporters at SBC Park.
2004 Emerald Bowl Press Conference
On the Emerald Bowl-
"When we got this opportunity, we were really excited. Now with this opportunity comes a great challenge, playing Navy. They have a great football team, and we're lookin' forward to the challenge. I think it's going to be a great match up."
"They're versatile. They can attack you at several different angles and different places no matter how you line up on defense."
On Coach Johnson-
"I think he's the best play caller and the best option coach in the country and I'm not just saying that because we're playing them."
On New Mexico's Ground Game-
"That's always the goal when you go into the game -- to dominate up front. If your guys aren't dominating up front, you're not going to have any success throughout the game. So we're not going to back away from our M.O. We come out and we try to establish the run and set up the play-action pass. If we can come out and dominate up front and get good yardage on first down, that will set up opportunities for us to make big plays throughout the air. So we're going to come out and try to impose our will on them early, so come fourth quarter there will be smiles on the sideline."
On New Mexico's Style of Play-
"I think we're coached on going as hard as you can. If you're not going as hard as you can, things aren't going to happen. When you watch other teams play, you watch a ball come out, and all of a sudden you see a change of speed in them. I think we always stay at one level. We're just constantly at one speed, and that's our top speed."
On the Emerald Bowl-
"We have the opportunity to play an outstanding team in New Mexico. We've got tremendous respect for Coach Long and his staff and the job that they do. It will be a huge challenge for our football team and one that we're looking forward to."
"I think it will be a very interesting game. Two teams whose strengths probably go against one another. Certainly they're great defensively and against the run, and that's kind of what we hang our hat on. And on the flip side, they run the ball very well. They've got a great offensive line, running back, quarterback. It's going to be a huge challenge for our football team but one that we are looking forward to."
"They probably do as good or better a job than anybody I've seen in along time with the defense. It's kind of organized chaos out there a little bit, in that they have a lot of looks, a lot of multiple stunts and blitzes. It's hard to really draw a beat on them. They know what they're doin', but they come from a lot of different directions. They don't ever sit still. So it's gonna be a big challenge. It will be a challenge for Aaron during the game."
On Navy's Team-
"The one thing we do have is we've got a bunch of guys that love to play. They're, I think, basically tough kids, and they're fun to coach. I like to coach tough kids. And we've got tough kids."
On Navy's Defensive Goals-
"Our goal every week is to stop the run and make them pass the ball. Heading into this game, that's our main goal. We need to stop the run. Can't let a team run all over you, `cause if you do that then they can just do whatever they want to you - throw it, pass it. So that is definitely our main goal -- to try to stop the run."