Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Distillery | by Jay

Yesterday's hour-long presser with Charlie was so chock-full of interesting stuff that I hesitate to even try and write it up. You'll find some good overview articles (the papers who didn't simply copy Tom Coyne's AP brief, I mean) in BGI, the South Bend Tribune, the Chicago Tribune (here, here, and here), the Elkhart Truth, the Chicago Sun-Times, the Fort Wayne Journal-Gazette, and the Chicago Daily Herald. Also, if you want to watch the entire presser, IE has the full video.

But let's try and boil this down to some quotable essence.

On injuries: "Everything looks to be right on pace for us to come in as healthy as we could have anticipated. John Carlson could have gone either way for awhile. That is a situation where you get the MRI and you get the good news or the bad news and we got the good news.”

On ND's talent level: “There are a lot of good players here. A lot of people take shots at coach Willingham and those people but there are enough players here to be competitive every week and if I didn’t think that I wouldn’t say it. My job now is just to get more of them.”

On freshman getting PT: "I like competition and first of all freshmen that can get into the mix in a hurry are going to get in the mix in a hurry, but they had better be ready to play on special teams."

On the problem with coaches voting in the BCS poll: "Here’s the problem with those votes. You’re playing on Saturday; how do you really know what those other teams are doing?"

On coaching the running backs: "That’s something that, talking to our running backs now, is new for them to understand how here is where the play is called and how it is designed to go but based on the pre-snap look, this is probably where it is going to go."

On Brady Quinn's progress: "He had some major flaws that we had to straighten out and we still have some work to do."

On suspended players: "Bonelli and Talley are back and Hedgeman is back too."

On balancing work and family: "Every day I’m not working, I’m doing something with [my family]. They know I’m not on the golf course unless I’m doing something for work...I don’t go fishing and I don’t go out with the fellows. When I’m not at work, I’m with my wife, Charlie, or Hannah and they know I will give them every second I can that’s not work-related. They know that’s as fair as I can possible be.”

On new QB coach Peter Vaas: "When it came to Peter, he and I have talked several times over the years about the possibility of him coming in and working with us as the quarterbacks’ coach, but the situation was never right. I wanted to hire an experienced guy that had head-coaching experience to replace a guy who had head-coaching experience...I have talked to Peter several times and as soon as David told me he was thinking that way, and as a matter of fact, I was on the road when he was thinking that way – sorry Kevin, but I ran up a $169 phone bill that night talking to Germany at that time. I had the phone number right then. It was 3:00 in the morning over in Germany when I called him. I woke him up and asked him if he was ready to talk and he said, ‘I am now.’”

On the value of a split Offensive Coordinator/QB coach: "So that is what Peter will bring as a valuable resource for me because I will be able to watch the whole play while he can worry just about what his guy is doing...Because several times people who have been the quarterbacks’ coach have really just been the coordinator and I think for the coordinator to coach the quarterback and watch the whole offense at the same time it is really tough to do that."

On the staff's current agenda: "Every day we spend half the day on recruiting right now. We are spending a half day on football and a half a day on recruiting."

On recruiting 'aids': "There are schools where there are probably 150 kids that have pictures of them wearing a super bowl ring...when kids are looking at these visions of playing on Sundays, there is no greater symbol of playing on Sundays than that ring."