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SAN DIEGO STATE UNIVERSITY MEDIA CONFERENCE


August 21, 2012


Nat Berhe

Gavin Escobar

Alec Johnson

Ryan Katz

Leon McFadden

Rene Siluano


Q.テつ Your thoughts on the defendants and how you guys are coming long?
NAT BERHE:テつ Well, I'm excited.テつ I think that the biggest concern is being the D‑Line and a lot of the young guys playing and getting a lot of reps during practice, I think it's helped.テつ I'm looking forward to the first game.テつ I know they are.テつ And they have been practicing pretty good.テつ So, I'm excited.

Q.テつ Along those lines, what's it like to try and bring guys along as fast as you have to to get ready?
NAT BERHE:テつ Lots of film study.テつ And then as a veteran on defense, you have to be very vocal and lead by example on the field, and just kind of, you know, rally the guys, rally the troops so everybody can be on the same page.

Q.テつ Do you get a sense that those guys are panicking at all?
NAT BERHE:テつ I don't think there's any urge of panic or any urge of panic.テつ I think as far as assignment wise, I think everybody is pretty much solid, so we are just trying to take it day by day.

Q.テつ Some of the changes with such a different defense, going against a team like Washington with a high‑powered offense, what is the sense of how you guys will do?
RENE SILUANO:テつ Being in the backfield, your first concern is you can't give up a big play as your last line of defense.テつ But also in our defense, you have to be aggressive because the whole idea is to get to the ball, fire out to the ball.
So those two concepts put together, and you have to be smart, also, and just know your personnel.テつ And a good team like Washington, if you show any spot of weakness in the defense, they are good enough to attack it; if you fly around and do your assignments right then, we should have no problem.
LEON McFADDEN:テつ Yeah, you really have to hone in on your assignment.テつ If you have make a mistake, the ball will find you, as Coach said.テつ If you're not on your P's and Q's, the ball will find its way to you.テつ And we can't afford to have any of those assignments missed.

Q.テつ How much pressure is it on you guys‑‑ because you're not sure what they are going to look like in competition?
LEON McFADDEN:テつ I mean, like Nat said, those guys are going to compete.テつ I don't necessarily think that we are going to have more pressure on us in the backfield on the back end.テつ But I think that those guys will put pressure on these quarterbacks allowing us to not be in coverage for that long.

Q.テつ You guys, any kind of big surprise for new camp as far as individuals?
LEON McFADDEN:テつ Jake Fely.テつ You know, he's an undersized linebacker that he gives his all every play.テつ We are out there doing walk‑throughs and he's still going a hundred miles per hour.テつ He knows that he's undersized, but he has a big heart and he works hard, and once we all get ahold of that, there's no stopping us.
I mean, that guy, in and out, in the film room, in the weight room, on the field, he's one of those guys in camp that's really standing out.

Q.テつ Seemed like the defense really tightened up in the second half of the scrimmage, after going back to the film, what stood out to you guys?
NAT BERHE:テつ Pressure.テつ We got a lot of pressure in the second half.テつ In the first half we were kind of conservative and coach told us to Jack it up and we jacked it up and offense was sort of eliminated in the second half.

Q.テつ Do you feel like you guys have the ability to dictate the game on a regular basis?
NAT BERHE:テつ Absolutely.テつ I think we have the ability to.テつ With the pressure that we send and the coverages that we play and the guys in the back end, I'm confident.テつ I'm confident.テつ I really am.

Q.テつ What do you think it's going to be like facing a team that's trash talking‑‑ inaudible.
LEON McFADDEN:テつ I haven't talked to them in probably about three months or so.テつ But I mean, I'm really looking forward to it.テつ You know, as you said, he's a former teammate of mine and it's going to be interesting to see what his mind‑set is going to be.テつ I'm pretty sure he's going to try to test me.テつ But it's all about competing at the end of the day.

Q.テつ From a defensive perspective, what do you guys hear from him on your side?
LEON McFADDEN:テつ Like in one‑on‑ones, if he'll catch a ball, he'll feel a little confident; or seven‑on‑seven, he might score a touchdown‑‑ it's all good.
It's all part of the game, smack‑talking, but don't let that control you.テつ Don't let it get inside your head.テつ It's all about competing.テつ There's going to be trash talking everywhere but it makes us better in practice as you can say.

Q.テつ What do you think of his personality?
LEON McFADDEN:テつ It's great.テつ He speaks his mind and that's the type of guy Brice is, and he's brought some energy to this program, and we can all appreciate that.
RENE SILUANO:テつ I just feel at the DB spot and the wide receiver spot, you've got to carry that sort of swag on you, like knowing that from a defensive standpoint, I'm going to cover you, or from his standpoint, I'm going to catch this ball.テつ And if you have that confident‑‑ and he has a lot of confidence.テつ (Laughter).

Q.テつ What strikes you about him?
RENE SILUANO:テつ That's just his demeanor, and that's how he carries himself.テつ And it helps him on the field, like Leon said, you can't let that control who you are in the game and let that get into your head, because that's when things start going south for you.

Q.テつ Inaudible?
RENE SILUANO:テつ On my team, yeah.
LEON McFADDEN:テつ Most definitely.

Q.テつ Talk about how camp is going for you and are you ready to step up and take a bigger role?
RENE SILUANO:テつ Absolutely.テつ I think my whole thing and everybody's whole thing should be when you get your opportunities, you have to take advantage of them and that's all I'm doing now, I'm getting my opportunity and I'm trying to take advantage of it.

Q.テつ How is your injury?
GAVIN ESCOBAR:テつ It's good.テつ I have a partial strain.テつ It's getting better every day, feeling better since it happened.テつテつ So just taking it day by day.

Q.テつ A little scary when it happened?
GAVIN ESCOBAR:テつ A little painful at first.テつ J.J. hit me pretty good.テつ But you know, I walked off the field.テつ I was fine.テつ So just a little sore.
I didn't even know he was hurt, actually, until the next day when I was in the training room in the morning.

Q.テつ Inaudible.
GAVIN ESCOBAR:テつ He's been injured with his knee for a while now and his shoulder.テつ So hopefully he recovers soon, too.
I feel a lot better day by day, just taking it day by day and hopefully practice soon?

Q.テつ What percentage would you say you're at?
GAVIN ESCOBAR:テつ I don't know about percentage.テつ I'm just taking it day by day.テつ Feel a lot better than the first day, and every day is just loosening up and not feeling as stiff.

Q.テつ What are you doing?
GAVIN ESCOBAR:テつ Rehab every day and ice and stim and ultrasound and just working with the strength and conditioning coach during practice and getting stronger.

Q.テつ Ryan, being consistent seemed to be a pretty popular world coming out of the scrimmage on Saturday.テつ Three days later, when you look back on it, what do you make of it now?
RYAN KATZ:テつ Yeah, I would say it was night and day.テつ We had a lot of things that we learned from in the scrimmage.テつ I think guys responded well that came back Monday ready to go.テつ We had some good reps under our belt now.
I think just learning from mistakes, watching the film.テつ I mean, really, ultimate goal is getting ready for Washington.テつ We have ten days left, so we have got to really speed this process up.

Q.テつ Alec, how is the development of the offensive line coming?
ALEC JOHNSON:テつ We are coming along.テつ We are getting a lot of reps, which is good, at our position, just to get consistency and working with each other and knowing what each other is doing and capable of.
But we are coming along.テつ We are not quite there yet.テつ But we are making progress.

Q.テつ What kind of things do you guys need to work on specifically to get to where you want to be at?
ALEC JOHNSON:テつ Just trust.テつ Knowing that someone's got your back and help when needed and knowing when to help you out and to protect him.テつ So, yeah.

Q.テつ Coach was talking about the fact that during the course of practice, he could throw like a hundred different formations at you.テつ Will you ever truly see anything like that during the course of the season?
ALEC JOHNSON:テつ Not at all.テつ It's awesome.テつ It's awesome going into real games and real defenses, because we get thrown everything but the kitchen sink in practice and pick up, blitz pick up during game is awesome and easy, because you're like, wow, this is what regular defenses run.
And so it's actually really nice for us, because we get a craziness and chaos in practice, and it's not like that in games.テつ So it's definitely helpful.

Q.テつ Coach was saying that you guys are almost in the dark as far as the Washington defense and not quite sure what they will do; is there some discomfort?テつ What's the comfort with not quite knowing what you're going to see?
RYAN KATZ:テつ Yeah, it's a little different.テつ Their defensive staff is gone from a year ago, so we are kind of watching different films of what the old defensive coordinator, the new one, I should say, of Washington, so looking at him and seeing what he tends to run.
And like you said, it is kind of going in the dark, but you never know, he may change things up.テつ I think it's just really preparing for anything and there's so many different plays you can run against certain defenses.テつ So we'll have those all dialed up and ready to go for Washington.

Q.テつ Inaudible.
ALEC JOHNSON:テつ We are not really prepared for any one thing.テつ We are kind of just preparing for everything and seeing what they will run come the game time and we'll adjust then.テつ So it's not like we are focusing on one defense, because we don't know.テつ And we don't know what they are going to run.
Ryan, can you talk about your experience, you played at Washington before with Florida State; what can you expect going on the road there.
RYAN KATZ:テつ It will be in Seahawk Stadium and it's loud there, too.テつ I've been up there, too.テつ It's going to be loud and we have to prepare for it, the crowd noise.テつ Those guys are going to be ready to go and they have been working all fall camp, all summer long.
So just trying to let everyone know, they are going to be ready to play and we will, too.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports




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