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September 26, 2017

Broderick Washington, Jr.

Lubbock, Texas

Q. Broderick, the first three games it seems that you and Mike are playing with a ton of chemistry. What's it like you guys playing together?
BRODERICK WASHINGTON JR.: Really, that all started in the off-season. Actually, it started before then with last year because we were back-ups, so every time either one of us got in, we were always together. So it started last year when we both gained experience and were playing with stuff in the off-season. Our bunch just grew closer and closer in the season. As you can see we're here with each other.

Q. (Indiscernible)?
BRODERICK WASHINGTON JR.: Honestly, I just feel like -- I guess both of us just do a good job of plugging up gaps and making sure nobody's able to run on the interior. It's really hard to say what I do best because I just try to do my job to the best of my abilities. And with him, it's just his energy. I guess his energy kind of just, I don't know. I don't want him to outdo me because we're the two guys that are in the middle. So I want it to be like if you're all talking about either one of us, you're all talking about both of us at the same time. I don't want it to be no differences, really, like when we're playing. That's about it, really.

Q. You're an East Texas boy. Have you ever played the game as hot as that one Saturday?
BRODERICK WASHINGTON JR.: No, not as hot as that one because at the half time it was pretty hot when we got out there.

Q. How did you feel condition-wise or how prepared?
BRODERICK WASHINGTON JR.: I feel like we were well prepared for that because of the strength program and our conditioning that we went through during the summer had us ready for any type of weather that we could have been put in. It was hot, but we really weren't tired or drained or anything like that. Coach Whitt and his staff did a great job with us.

Q. What are your thoughts on that Oklahoma State game?
BRODERICK WASHINGTON JR.: I felt like he's doing a great job right now and that run game is pretty good. But as long as we come in and do what we've been doing, I feel like we've got a pretty good chance of shutting it down.

Q. How much confidence does the defense have right now with the last three games that they've played?
BRODERICK WASHINGTON JR.: Starting 3-0, I mean, we have a lot of confidence because we've been able to do things that last year's team probably wouldn't have been able to do. So everybody right now is just playing at a high level. With us staying on each other the way we are, there's really no -- it's really not any doubt in our mind about going into games. Like we respect our opponents, but we don't -- what am I trying to say -- we really don't go into the game worried about anything. We trust our coaches and we stick to the game plan, and we've got a lot of faith in our game plan.

Q. Going on top of that, do you think every week going against different teams kind of gives the defense a new motivation, new goals to set to prove themselves, especially when you're going against Oklahoma State's offense who is probably one of the best in the Big 12?
BRODERICK WASHINGTON JR.: Yes, ma'am, I feel like going against their high-powered offense, they're pretty much almost the same as ours. We might just go a little quicker than they do. But pretty much I feel like our goals stay the same with trying to keep their team from being able to run the ball, really and passing-wise. Our secondary, I'm not really -- I can't really speak on their goals. I don't know exactly what goals they have in place for different games.

Q. When you're able to stop a running game especially with a high-powered offense? What does that do to make them one-dimensional? How does that help you strategy-wise?
BRODERICK WASHINGTON JR.: If you can't run the ball the only other thing you've got is to throw it or trick plays and stuff like that. And if we're stopping the run, not too many trick plays can work.

If you limit a team to just throwing the ball, then all you've got to worry about is getting back there and getting in the quarterback's face, really.

Q. Is that the key for you all this season is stopping the run?
BRODERICK WASHINGTON JR.: Yes, sir. All throughout the off-season that's all the D-line. That's all we talked about. We wanted them to be able to stop the run. We didn't want anybody to be able to run the ball on us.

Q. Why do you think the tackling has been better this year?
BRODERICK WASHINGTON JR.: I would have to say just the job that our coaches are doing, and the emphasis we put on tackling in practice.

Q. You guys have done a much better job already in three games of closing out close games. Mentality-wise, what's been the key there? What has been the difference from last year when the game gets close at the end?
BRODERICK WASHINGTON JR.: To me, the difference is last year you would notice that like people wouldn't say it, but you could just tell by people's body language and the way they were talking with each other that they didn't have a lot of faith in us when it did come to the close game and we needed a stop or two.

But this year it's like no matter what happens, we know the offense has our back just like we've got their backs. It's really the brotherhood that we've built amongst each other.

Q. Nic and Eli had talked in postgame on Saturday about one game the defense would be on offense, a little off and vice versa and some other games. What do you see as players that you guys have to do to get on the same page? What do you think this team is capable of if the offense and defense played to their capability?
BRODERICK WASHINGTON JR.: Really, I feel like that just goes with us having each other's back. So even if the offense is off right now depending on -- really not depending on anything, but if the offense is off, the defense, all you hear the defensive leaders saying is come on, we've got your back, we've got your back, keep your head up. We've got you all.

It's the same thing with the offense. If we're falling off and doing bad, we've got offensive guys coming down, we've got you, we've got you. Just keep fighting, keep fighting. And if we do come to a point where we're clicking the whole game, both units, the sky's the limit, really, for us.

Q. What did you see and what do you remember from the Oklahoma State offensive line?
BRODERICK WASHINGTON JR.: They're a big group of guys that play well together. They do their job almost perfect. They're well-coached, pretty big guys. Wouldn't say really physical, but they're a big group of guys. And as long as we do our job then we'll be able to keep the assist we've had on defense going.

Q. You guys had some (Indiscernible) on the O-line, does that change your preparation at all, really?
BRODERICK WASHINGTON JR.: No, ma'am. It's just the next man up. Whoever is in, they're just in.

Q. How much have you seen Tony improve going from linebacker to rushing and how has that helped the defense?
BRODERICK WASHINGTON JR.: With Tony, he's a speed guy, and no matter where he is, he's always around the ball. From the transition of him playing linebacker to D-end, it's not too much of a change. It's just he's more down in the trenches now and has to fight with fight blockers and more than he would at linebacker. Really, he's improved every week with it, and he's doing a great job. For him, the sky's the limit.

Q. In terms of having another vocal leader, what has Dakota brought back to the team as he's come back?
BRODERICK WASHINGTON JR.: Dakota's come back and brought the physicality back, he's brought more confidence back. He's given us more confidence as well knowing we've got a guy back there that's been through it all. He's done this already. With him, there wasn't a drop off. It was like he never left, really.

Q. (Indiscernible) seems like is there anything he's still stressing to you?
BRODERICK WASHINGTON JR.: It's not really much that he complains about with us. He likes where we're at, but there is always room for improvement. So he always finds little things that we can get better at and he harps on those things.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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