Sept. 30, 2003
New Mexico Head Coach Rocky Long
Question: How is (Sr. strong tackle) Jason Lenzmeier coming along?
Rocky Long: "Good. He's going to be out at practice today. He's going to do some half-speed stuff today. If this week was for the conference championship, he would play this week. If he continues to progress like he is progressing right now, he'll be ready for San Diego State (on Oct. 18)."
Q: What are your thoughts on Utah State?
RL: "They are the most complicated formation changing oriented football team I have ever tried to defense. They shift and motion every single snap. Personnel doesn't give formations away. It looks like they line up wherever they want to and then they all shift to where they are supposed to be. Once they shift to where they are supposed to be, someone goes in motion. It makes it almost impossible to have any extra stuff on defense or be complicated on defense, and we are a complicated defense. It makes it very difficult to prepare and we didn't play very good defense against them last year."
Q: Do they make checks on the line of scrimmage?
RL: "I think they have checks when they have five step drops that if they see a blitz coming, they will change it to a three-step drop. If they see an overload blitz they seem to check to a run away from the blitz. I don't think they check a lot because it's not part of their system. The big part of their system is early in the game they run 15 or 20 formations and then they will figure out which ones you line up right against and which ones you don't. The ones you don't line up right against, you'll see a lot the rest of the game."
Q: What does Utah State do on defense?
RL: "They switched their defense. Last year they were very complicated on defense, but they have a new defensive coordinator and have settled down a lot on defense. They don't blitz very much and when they do blitz, it's a zone blitz. They are a base 50 defense and very sound fundamentally. They don't give up big plays and they have played much better on defense this than they did last year."
Q: Will we see (Fr. quarterback) Kole McKamey this week?
RL: "There are no plans going into the game to play Kole. I mean, I won't hesitate to put him in there if Casey (Kelly) is having a bad night, but we could struggle on offense and Casey not be having a bad night."
Q: Did you see something in New Mexico State's defense that led you to believe that running the quarterback would be successful?
RL: "We run [quarterback counters and the quarterback draws] off of the fly sweep. If the defense is over pursuing that stuff, it's a way to comeback against the reaction from the defense. We didn't run the ball very well, because we didn't block them very well."
Q: Did you decide to bench Casey out after the interception by Glover?
RL: "I decided to make a change at quarterback, it wasn't a benching in fact I planned on putting Casey back in the game. After two or three series of watching Kole play, I had decided I was going to put Casey back in the game. But football is a funny game momentum wise and when the momentum is going good, you don't want to change it no matter who's doing well or who's not. When the momentum is going good, don't change. The momentum swung in our favor and I wasn't about to go and change."
Q: Did you ever think you would see 44,000 at University Stadium?
RL: "We were talking earlier, but that was awesome. It was amazing. In all the time I was a player and all the time I was an assistant, it was the first time I had been in that stadium when it was a big time college football atmosphere. You could have been anywhere. You could have been at Oregon, Nebraska, anyplace. Anytime the stands are full, loud and everybody is into the game, its big time. It was a big time atmosphere."