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September 26, 2011

Fozzy Whittaker

Q. The possibility if something happened to the third quarterback practicing, you could be back there?
FOZZY WHITTAKER: I wish. I hope so. I'll warm up my arm tomorrow at practice.

Q. It's funny because it's not that out of the question. I mean, that's kind of how this offense is.
FOZZY WHITTAKER: I guess so. It's really, you know, you can't really prepare. Coach Harsin, he's kind of an unpredictable, think-outside-the-box coach. He's one of those guys, he's willing to do anything. I guess it's really not that far out of the question, but also I think he'll want to win. I don't think I'm the best option.

Q. Of the guys on the offense, who do you think would be the best option for the third quarterback?
FOZZY WHITTAKER: I don't know. We were actually doing a drill yesterday where we were throwing into the quarterback. I guess it's like a little hole that they have to aim it in for precision, and the only person that made it was DeSean Hales, if that says much.

Q. Mack said that you will be returning kicks. Can you talk about that role and how you feel about it?
FOZZY WHITTAKER: Well, ultimately I've been back there kind of practicing. I haven't been returning kicks ever since I've been here, and so it's kind of a new role for me. But basically if the ball is kicked to me, I just plan to get the offense the best field position and yardage as we possibly can. If not, then I plan to just basically go be a lead blocker for the one that is returning and kind of get the play started, as we call it.

Q. What did you take from last year's loss to Iowa State?
FOZZY WHITTAKER: Basically it was an emotional loss for us, home game, losing by 7. We weren't really fundamentally sound, had a ton of turnovers. So that's one of the things that has stuck with me all the way through off-season, but ultimately this is a new team and a new year. We've basically focused on eliminating all the turnovers and basically focused on the defense getting more turnovers and taking care of the football and being more physical. That's some of the aspects that we've stressed over these first couple of weeks, and we continue -- that created momentum to go into Iowa State and continue to do the same thing.

Q. How humbling was that loss?
FOZZY WHITTAKER: You know, it was very humbling just because we knew that we played terrible. It wasn't a good look for us. Nobody was able to say that, you know, they did their part because it was a team effort. Wholistically the whole team lost, and it's something that we use as a learning tool and what not to do this year to prevent that from happening.

Q. Anything you say to the young guys?
FOZZY WHITTAKER: You know, basically just always remember what's gotten you here. You know, it wasn't just the fact that you had to go out there on the field, no preparation, no work and show up and all of a sudden you were the best in the country. You had to do something before that, which is always working hard, putting your head down, what Coach Harsin calls being a blue collar athlete, always going back to work no matter what. That's always something we stress each and every week. No matter what we did in the game or no matter what we did at practices, the next day we're always putting our head down and going back to work.

Q. Iowa State is going to come in with a ton of confidence, as well. Talk about going up against a team that's feeling pretty good about themselves.
FOZZY WHITTAKER: I think it's going to be a great match-up for us going into a hostile environment as theirs. They're undefeated, we're undefeated. They have great fan support. Their stadium is very compact so it's going to be very loud for us and another true test of what type of character our team has whenever it faces adversity out there and how we'll respond to that.

Q. With two bye weeks some of the guys are saying you're breaking down the season into three parts. You've obviously taken care of business in the first part, but how do you not look ahead?
FOZZY WHITTAKER: Ultimately it was put to me like this: The biggest game that you play is going to be your next game. You know, ultimately Iowa State is who we're focusing on right now. There's a time and place for everything, so everybody later down the line, we can focus on them whenever that time comes, but right now our time is for Iowa State.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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