Aug. 29, 2012
TUCSON, Ariz. – With the season opener just three days away, the Arizona football team completed a two-hour practice at Kindall Field/Sancet Stadium on Wednesday afternoon. Below is a brief transcript of head coach Rich Rodriguez’s comments following practice.
On the last couple of practices leading up to the season opener:
“We just tried to hone up our game plan for Toledo and execute a little better. I wasn’t really pleased with yesterday’s practice – I didn’t think we had a hard enough edge. Today was a little bit better, but we didn’t go full pads – we were just in shoulder pads. I think our guys got the message and it’s warm, but we should be used to that around here. Hopefully our guys will be sharp mentally the next 48 hours and be ready to go on Saturday night.”
On whether the first few games are used as an evaluation period where more guys play:
“We try to win every game and do whatever we can to win every game. I want to play a lot of guys and that is always our goal. I think we can get to the point where we play 22 or 23 guys on defense and maybe more on offense, but I don’t think we are there right now simply because some guys aren’t ready either physically or mentally. Eventually we will get to that point if we do our jobs recruiting and developing, but we aren’t going to be there right now.”
On what “spot the ball” means:
“We started using that slogan way back when I was at Glenville State. People thought it was because we were going fast with the no huddle – as soon as the official spotted the ball, we are ready to play. But really it is a program mantra that no matter if we are at home, on the road, offense, defense, first quarter, fourth quarter, ahead or behind -- once the umpire spots the ball, our team is ready to play. So that “spotting the ball” slogan is kind of a mentality we want to have.”
On the defensive line:
“I think we will probably play more guys at that position than any position on the team simply because you have to against a spread team like Toledo. I think we have more guys that can and I think we’ll play at least six and it could be more up front, but I think we’ll play at least six in the three spots.”
The Wildcats will take to Arizona Stadium on Saturday as they host Toledo. The 7:30 p.m. contest will be broadcast nationally on ESPNU. Football tickets are available at the McKale Center Ticket office, by visiting ArizonaWildcats.com or by calling 520-621-2287 or 1-800-452-CATS.
For continued coverage of Arizona Wildcat football, visit ArizonaWildcats.com.