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April 21, 2012

Tommy Rees



Q.  Tommy, what did you do today that you hadn't done last season?  What is different about your game?
TOMMY REES:  I think just having another year in the offense, and knowing a couple of times we got out of some wrong plays and we could run some looks.  There is obviously one ball, one back, but other than that, I feel like things went all right.
Obviously that interception put a damper on things.  But I'm happy with how spring ended.  If I got that one throw back, I still feel good coming out of the game.

Q.  It seemed like you had some plays in the end zone that wasn't completed, but the ball was there each time, the touch was there?
TOMMY REES:  Yeah, that's something we worked on a lot in the spring.  And we're trying to give our receivers a chance to go out and make some plays.  We some opportunities today, but the defense did a pretty good job getting the ball out of their hands at the last minute.
It was a 50‑50 ball, but as long as we put it there, we have enough skill receivers.

Q.  How do you feel about this spring overall?
TOMMY REES:  Good.  We have a long way to go as an offense, but we took a definite positive step this spring.  I think the way the offense has kind of come together under Coach Martin's leadership, things are definitely positive.

Q.  How do you look at yourself through the summer?
TOMMY REES:  I think you've got to approach it as a starter.  You have to have that mentality, and you have to be a leader out there.  Just take it one day at a time and do everything you can to get better.  Summer's a big time for individual development.
It's been a big time for me in the past, so I'm going to continue to try to grow throughout that period.

Q.  Coach talked about the importance of the summer.  What can you do in the summer to be better?
TOMMY REES:  A lot of it falls on your shoulders because the coaches aren't with you.  We do a lot of stuff all week, and I think you have opportunities to grow and become a leader on the team.  It's a lot of weight training and a lot of time to get better and physically get better.  I think that's something that everyone's got to focus on.

Q.  (No microphone)?
TOMMY REES:  It happened.  Obviously, I wanted that one back today.  But 3rd and long, I've got to learn to take the ball down and get out of the series.  So, yeah, it's something I've got focus on getting rid of it.

Q.  Is it hard to focus on that as a quarterback?
TOMMY REES:  No, it's something we've done all spring all four of us.  Lot of times we get a ball in a play makers hands and a check down can turn into a first down completion.  We've got to be patient and take what the defense gives us.

Q.  Can you talk a little about the versatility that Kiel brings?
TOMMY REES:  A lot.  We take him out of the back field and split out the receiver.  Once the ball's in his hands, he can do a lot with it.  Today he did a great job of making plays and getting up field, especially yardage after the catch.

Q.  (No microphone)?
TOMMY REES:  Yeah, he can be a special player.  He's a guy with a lot of speed, a lot of shiftiness.  He's still got to focus in on paying attention to some of the details and the ball security stuff.  When he puts it all together he can be a good player.

Q.  (Indiscernible) obviously, we don't see you very much.  It's a big deal for us.
TOMMY REES:  Yeah, I think it's a bigger deal to the outside than it is internally.  It's an opportunity to go out there with a love atmosphere.  But the spring game is still part of the spring ball learning process.  It's a way to get better.  It's another step of the process.

Q.  Is that interception more a here we go again or what was your perspective?
TOMMY REES:  It's not a here we go again.  It's a 3rd and long, a drop 8, I've got to check it down.  I thought I could hit it Goodie up the seam and not I let the ball go a little high.  It was down a couple of inches and it's a big first down completion, and we're not even having that conversation.  It's definitely something to learn from.

Q.  (No microphone).  Talk about this revolution.  Some guys grow into their bodies.  Talk about that?
TOMMY REES:  I think it's come a long way.  Coming in really helped me gain some confidence in this offense and being around Notre Dame.  I think all the plays we have and all the experience I had kind of shaped me to where I am now.  I think physically I've come a long way and I've got to get better.

Q.  (No microphone) with all the studies you have to do plus the team?
TOMMY REES:  Yeah, it's a place like none other.  Knowing we have a tough curriculum, but that's the way it is here and that's the way we want it.  Everyone chose this school for a reason.  Everyone knew the academic aspect of it.

Q.  What do you think the offensive line (no microphone) how they go about their business?
TOMMY REES:  He still has tenacity to it.  He's very high tempo, a lot of energy, kind of get in your face kind of coach.  He's got a toughness and tenacity at the offensive line.  I think his energy resonates through the whole line.

Q.  It seems he's really pushing it.
TOMMY REES:  Yeah, he definitely loves competition.  He wants our guys to compete every day in the trenches.  There is a lot of tough guy up there, and he's trying to get those guys going.  I think he's done a great job.

Q.  You talked the other day about how you the O‑line sets the tempo for everybody.  People don't really think about the O‑line in terms of practices, but have you found that to be the case?
TOMMY REES:  I think when you see a physicality up front, it kind of resonates through the offense.  If we can win the line of scrimmage battle, that is a big part of our offense and what we try to do.  I think if we establish that, it kind of gives the offense a lot of confidence.

Q.  Is it frustrating at all when you don't quite go out and make the most of it?
TOMMY REES:  Not really.  Obviously, it's frustrating to throw an interception.  You never want that to happen.  But we're battling, so I understand the split time.  It would be nice to get a couple series in a row, but playing with these guys and competing with them, we all support one another.

Q.  Back in March before spring ball you had a chance to throw at (No microphone) Forest College.  What were you doing in that workout?  I think Connor was there as well.  What kind of stuff were you trying to accomplish in those workouts?
TOMMY REES:  Just trying to fine tune some of the fundamentals of playing the position.  Trying to get some of the foot work and techniques down.  Coming into spring ball, you don't want to be going in there cold.  Just trying to get some work done before the practice starts and getting down some fundamentals.

Q.  Does it help going back and being around guys like Connor and guys from Michigan?
TOMMY REES:  It's fun to be around guys you play with.  We joke around and have a good time.  But it's good to go home and work on things.

Q.  What type oftweet is appropriate?
TOMMY REES:  To be honest, I don't have a Twitter and I don't pay attention to all of that.  Obviously guys know where the line is and they make sure not to cross it.

Q.  Coach mentioned attention to detail.  You had a couple of interceptions.  What do you take away from it?
TOMMY REES:  I think it's just something that I'm going to get better at.  It's something we've been up‑and‑down with all spring.  We'll remain focused and get to the front where we've got a steady stream there.  But it's something we'll continue to work on and continue to get better at.

Q.  Brian mentioned over the summer and your position.  What is your chief goal going into voluntary workouts?
TOMMY REES:  To establish a leadership role and continue to get better.  I think every day is an opportunity to step up, be the guy, and continue to get better as an individual.  That is the attitude everyone's going to have going into summer.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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