• Loading KStateSports Tweets...
    1 second ago
MAIN ROSTER | SCHEDULE | STATS | TRADITION | FACILITIES | CAMPS | CLINICS | MEDIA GUIDE | ARCHIVE
Weekly Press Conference Quotes


GO WILDCATS Coach Snyder and quarterback Ell Roberson talked with the media on Tuesday
GO WILDCATS
Coach Snyder and quarterback Ell Roberson talked with the media on Tuesday
GO WILDCATS

Nov. 19, 2002

MANHATTAN, Kan. - KANSAS STATE HEAD COACH BILL SNYDER

On the possibility of a mental letdown after last week's win...

"I would certainly be concerned about that. I'm pleased with our players and the way they've responded week in and week out in their preparation. I'd be disappointed and I think they would too if there was a let down. I think they have had the appropriate mental approach and they certainly understand the path that is in front of them and what a quality team the University of Missouri has developed into over the year."

On seeing confidence in Missouri...

"I think so, but I don't think it's necessarily something that has come just with the win against Texas A&M. I think they have recognized and felt confident with their capabilities throughout the conference season."

On the similarities of Brad Smith and Ell Roberson...

"There are a lot of similarities, certainly. They have the capabilities to do all the things they do. Their offense is similar to ours in regards to what they ask their quarterback to do, what they allow him to do and have a portion of their offense centered around the capabilities of a guy like Brad Smith or Ell Roberson."

On Brad Smith...

"He really has displayed a tremendous amount of poise, which most people probably wouldn't attribute to an 18-year-old student athlete in a Division I-A conference such as the one we have. Everybody's a little different. He has certainly handled himself very well. I don't think anybody denies his talent. What's extremely impressive to me is the poise he presents himself with. He seems to have a complete command of what he's doing in that offense and operates it so very well."

On Justin Gage...

"He's as good as there is. I know that. All the yardage that he's amassed in his career there and the 80 receptions that he has this year would indicate that is certainly true. We treat him with a tremendous amount of respect. Having played against him last year, we are very cognizant of the quality of receiver he is and the things he can do and the problems that he presents and their desire to get the ball to him."

On Terence Newman being a finalist for the Bronko Nagurski award...

"It's a tremendous honor for Terence and we are awfully pleased that other people recognize the quality of his ability. I'm happy for him. We just want him to finish off the season well and play well and hopefully he'll be more than just a semifinalist."

On Missouri's program...

"They are a program that is really making vast improvement. They have a system that works extremely well for them. They are very competitive. I think regardless of whether they were playing for a bowl opportunity or not, I think they'd be highly competitive. I think that is the nature of their program, that's the nature of those young guys and those coaches that are in Columbia. They want to win regardless of what a victory would bring."

On the success of the defensive front...

"I think primarily they are good players across the front and they play extremely hard which is a benefit to any player. But I don't think there is much of a difference in how well each one of them was playing. I don't think there is a big difference in the effort that they play with. They practice basically the same way for the most part, which I think has been instrumental in their improvement over the course of the year. They take a great deal of pride in their performance, individual and collective, and they play well together."

Comparing Darren Sproles with Eric Gallon and J.J. Smith...

"They are very different than Darren. Eric was a guy that had a combination of things going for him. He had a little bit of the movement but not really like Darren does. Eric was also an aggressive runner, like Darren in that respect. He had a good presence about where the ball needed to fit and where he needed to go. He had good vision. He was complemented, like Darren, in the offense by having some other people around that could do some things so he wasn't the whole show.

"J.J. was a very aggressive runner, but bigger obviously than Eric was and J.J. may have been the fastest of them all. Because of what J.J. could do, our running game was a little different at that time than it is right now. J.J. was one of those guys that was pretty good about finding the creases. It was kind of option football for him, give him the ball and give him a number of options. He was pretty good about that and he was kind of a slashing type runner as well. As he relates to the other two, he was probably just faster."

On Missouri's offense...

"This is just a very good offensive football team. They have kept themselves in a lot of ballgames because they have been able to move the ball consistently and because they have such diversity. Smith can do so many things and he gives you maybe three or four dimensions. You bring in Zach Abron and he's a physical runner and then you throw the ball out there to (Justin) Gage or (Darius) Outlaw or (Marcus) James. They've just got a lot of places they can go with the football and a lot of ways they can get there. It makes it difficult to defend."

On being back in the Top10...

"I don't know how many teams are better than we are. There might be a whole parcel. Being there is better than being whereever we were the week before."

On Darren Sproles' durability...

"I don't think it's any records that he has set, it's just the fact that he has remained on the field, that he's carried the ball as many times as he has and he's still playing. That is what speaks to his durability."

On his feelings about Sproles...

"I have a tremendous amount of respect for Darren. What I like about Darren is that he's all the things that sometimes people question him not to be. He's tough, durable and a team-oriented guy. He just wants to win. He wants to help his football team win. I like that. He's very unassuming. He's not a guy that lets the success he has go to his head and he doesn't present himself that way. I love his humility. I love those traits."

On blocking for Sproles...

"If I were an offensive lineman, Darren would probably frustrate the daylights out of me. I would never know where he was going. I would never know how to block the guy I was going to block and which way I would be blocking him. You just don't know where the little guy is going. Basically, what you have to do is just block it the way it's drawn up and if he doesn't go there, that's another issue."

======================================

JUNIOR DEFENSIVE END ANDREW SHULL

On Brad Smith...

"He looks really good. He's an elusive runner. He looks a lot like the past two quarterbacks we've faced. He can throw the ball extremely well and he's a very talented quarterback."

On playing against similar quarterbacks three games in a row...

"I don't know if I like it that he's like (Seneca Wallace and Jammal Lord) because they are pretty good. I think it does help us in our preparation that we're going to go up against the same type of quarterback."

On the difficulty of playing in Columbia the last few years...

"I remember when I was in high school and the '98 team went in there, and they played us close. I don't know what it is about Columbia, but it's a place that has given us trouble in the past, and I know this year they are going to come to play. They're looking to get to a bowl game and they're going to come ready to play."

On possibly having a letdown after the Nebraska game...

"I don't think that this team has it in their attitude to have a letdown. We know every game is big and this is going to be our last regular season opportunity to play... I think we're just ready to get our there on Saturday."

On the K-State defense possibly breaking records...

"I think the only (statistic) that stands out in our mind is that we want to be the No. 1 defense in the nation and that's our goal. It's been our goal throughout the season and it's the only one that we're probably going to look at, and hopefully we can get that done."

======================================

SENIOR DEFENSIVE TACKLE TANK REESE

On Missouri having a lot of weapons...

"They've got Justin Gage in there and they've got a very talented quarterback in (Brad) Smith, so they have some weapons that they can work with."

On staying focused on Missouri...

"You always have to put your past games behind you and focus on the games ahead of you, and I'm very excited to go down to Mizzou and I can't wait to play them."

On Brad Smith...

"He's a very mobile quarterback. He can get out of the pocket and he makes nice reads. He looks like a very good quarterback. I'm going to try everything I can to keep him in (the pocket)."

On being surprised by Brad Smith's success at the age of 18...

"It's a new age, everybody's young. You've got all kinds of young people out there doing good, look at Darren Sproles, so you can't underestimate anyone."

=================================

JUNIOR TIGHT END THOMAS HILL

On playing at Missouri...

"It's hard to beat anyone at home. Down there, they've always played well at home, they've played some guys at home this year down to the wire and they've only lost by a few points. It's just a hostile environment to play in, but if we go down there and handle our busines,s we'll come out of there with a victory."

On wanting a chance to play Colorado and Texas again...

"That would be nice. We try not to talk about the past a lot, but we kind of look back and look where we are right now. I feel if anyone comes in contact with us right now, the way we are playing, they're going to be in some trouble. We'd like to bring those games back, but we can't. We're just looking forward to the future games."

On Missouri's defense...

"We know they are tough up front and they play of a lot of pride, especially at home. Every team plays real good at home, so we're just looking forward to going out and trying to put up as many points as we can and as many yards as we can possibly, whether it be in the air or on the ground it doesn't really matter to us."

====================================

SENIOR CENTER STEVE WASHINGTON

On playing at Missouri...

"I think it is a difficult place to play. Normally the last few years, we have played there we had just won against Nebraska and we were still living on that win. If Missouri wins they're up for a bowl game, they're a good, dangerous team."

On blocking for a 1,000-yard rusher two years in a row...

"Darren will be bashful about it, but it means a whole lot to me and the offensive line. I know that for me, having two 1,000-yard rushers in consecutive years is great. I hope they can continue that, a lot of schools don't have a chance to have a 1,000-yard rusher. We're just fortunate to have one these last two years."

On blocking for Darren Sproles...

"After the first five yards, I just watch. I try to knock my man down and then see him run. I know I can't catch him, so I just watch him from behind. He's just a great back."

On Ell Roberson's progress...

"He's matured more. I know on Saturday he is focused and ready to play. He knows the game plan and he watches film every day."

On Ell being a leader of the team...

"I think he knows that, but he won't admit it. I see him as a leader. I'm not knocking Marc (Dunn) because he's a great leader also, but he's just one of those guys that knows that it's his position and it's his to lose, and I think he's got it right now."

On Missouri being more dangerous then Nebraska...

"I look at them as more dangerous, because Nebraska was bowl eligible. Missouri is looking to become bowl eligible. They're dangerous right now and they know that if they beat us they can play one more game. If they don't, their season is over. This is kind of like a bowl game for them right now."

======================================

JUNIOR QUARTERBACK ELL ROBERSON

On returning to the Top 10 in the polls...

"We worked hard all year and got close to the Top 10. We fell off against Colorado and Texas, but it feels good to be back in there... Under Coach Snyder we work so hard, it's expected for us to be up there. We just have to get back up there."

On reflecting how well they played against Nebraska...

"I made a few mistakes. Offensively, we made some mistakes. But for the most part, we played pretty well. The O-line did a great job opening the holes up for me and Darren Sproles. The receivers ran some good routes and made some catches in the game. I think we played pretty well."

On getting to see the 91-yard touchdown run...

"I didn't get a chance to see the move I put on the safety. Coach Hudson in the film room was rewinding it back and forth, so it was kind of fun watching it."

On how comfortable he is with his role...

"I'm real comfortable basically. We're out there running and I feel good doing it. I just go out there and take what they give me. The coaches are giving us great plays and we're just clicking as an offensive unit."

On trying to pass this week....

"They keep a lot of people in the box, so that will force us to throw the ball a little bit more. Our receivers are up to it and they know what they have to do. We're practicing well right now. They're a good, fast team and we're just going to have to go up there and play our game."

On the chance to get 1,000 yards rushing...

"It would mean a lot to me, just to say that I ran for 1,000 yards this year. But I'm not really worried about it. If it comes, it comes. If it doesn't, I still have another game."