Saturday, September 8, 2007
"We're certainly excited to finally get into game week and excited about the challenge going to BYU on Saturday. It should be a great football game. I would anticipate a lot of the same similarities as last year. We kind of mirror each other even more so this year than last year. I think our characteristics are similar but I think philosophically you're going to see two teams that mirror each other in a lot of different ways.
|Mike Stoops spoke to the media about BYU on Monday.|
"They lost two games by a total of six points - two field goals. Two games they probably felt like they had an excellent chance to win on the road but came up a little short. It's a confident football team and program. We know what the game was like last year and we felt like we let some things slip away but feel like we can play better than we did a year ago and we're going to have to.
"Going on the road I think you have to play great defense, you have to have a great kicking game, you can't turn the ball over and we're going to have to protect our quarterback. Those are things that any time you go on the road, those things are paramount when you play a great football team. Those are things we stressed and have done a good job of.
"We're coming off three straight road wins, which helps. I think our kids play well, they seem to really concentrate and focus well on the road. I'm glad we're playing a team like this right off the bat because they get your full attention and our kids are well prepared, they're excited. We'll see what happens Saturday.
"It's a confident team, we've worked extremely hard, we're healthy, so we've just got to go out and play. I think it's time and our kids are awfully tired of practicing, I know that. We have to have a great week of preparation this week, really fine tune our game plan, really know what we're doing and try to anticipate how they're going to attack us a little differently.
"They have to run the ball, I think we limited them to 40 yards rushing, they broke a couple plays and had some nice rubs but philosophically we were very well positioned and some of those runs had little chance of success. So they're going to look for ways to either play action or they're going to have to get some plays off the way we played them.
"Those are things you have to do. You have to anticipate what type of moves they're going to make this year as opposed to last year. They do what they do, when you watch 11, 12 games, which we have, you see a lot of ways they're trying to run the ball and they're trying to temper your rush in some ways. That's what we anticipate, they're going to try to temper our guys up front a little bit, try to slow us down.
"(Last year) I think we had maybe two sacks in the game but we had decent pressure throughout the course of the game. John Beck was a little off in our game at first and settled in later in the game and started playing better. I watched 11, 12 (games) and I just can't believe how well he played last year. It's easy to see why he was picked as the third quarterback taken in the draft.
"They have some question marks too, replacing a lot of faces there, some big playmakers for that team. But their quarterback has been in the system now I believe his third year so he has a good handle on it so it's going to be interesting to see how both quarterbacks handle the situation."
On a potential element of surprise with the new offense:
"There's a lot of different ways we can go with this offense. BYU, when you watched them through the course of last year, you see a lot of different things they're attempting to do. There's a lot more to that offense as you watch it. What we're going to emphasize, how we're going to attack them, I don't think anybody really knows. I don't think they know what we're going to emphasize through the course of this game.
"They've watched, I'm sure, the whole season of (Texas) Tech and these guys understand this system very well too. They go up against it virtually everyday and the routes mirror each other but what we emphasize will be the difference."
On problems preparing for BYU's spread offense last year:
We had a little bit of a history with the offense playing Tech for so many years so I thought it helped us relate those intricacies to our players. It's going to obviously help them as well, because they understand the route recognition, they see it day in and day out. They just run these routes over and over and over.
"How they're going to attack you is what you have to understand. In certain coverages, this is where they're going to attack, this is the weakness, they catch you in something this is where they want to go. I think it's just preparation and kids reacting on the field to what they see."
On preparing for Max Hall:
"It will be interesting to see what his strengths are; I'm sure he has a lot of them. We don't know what they are at this point but it gets kind of scary, I can't sleep at night thinking about some of those plays John Beck made last year. I'm like 'oh my goodness', they were some of the most incredible plays I've seen.
"This kid has had the pleasure of watching (Beck) for two years so I'm sure he knows what John brought to the table and I'm sure he'll take a great deal of pride in that position. He'll go out, he's a battler, they say he likes to gamble and throw the ball in there so we have to be prepared for another outstanding quarterback."
Mike Stoops may be asking for his old job back if things don't improve in Tucson.
After an early loss to Brigham Young, some media reports claim that, "there is already a group keeping an eye on the Arizona job, convinced Mike Stoops is on the way out."
Regular FanHouse readers should not be surprised. We declared Stoops to be on the Hot Seat nearly a month ago! I guess somebody has to keep Lloyd Carr company, eh?
Michael J. Stoops (born December 31, 1961) is the head football coach at the University of Arizona, his first head coaching position. He previously served as the assistant coach at the University of Iowa, Kansas State University and the University of Oklahoma. He is the younger brother of Oklahoma head coach, Bob Stoops. He has been in a coaching capacity for over 18 years. As a head coach he has emphasized the importance of defense. His current record as a head coach is 12-22.
Stoops attended Cardinal Mooney HS in Youngstown, Ohio before moving onto play for the University of Iowa Hawkeyes (1983-1986).
Earlier in the summer of 1987, Stoops would become one of the original 80 Arena Football League players when he suited up for the Pittsburgh Gladiators. Stoops was a key member of the Gladiators that season who went onto play in the inaugural ArenaBowl (losing to Denver 45-16).
In the six-game AFL regular season, Stoops caught 22 passes, scored 3 TD's, made 15 tackles and recorded an interception playing both WR and DB positions.