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September 24, 2012

Seth Doege

Q.  Seth, last season, Iowa State was not such a good game here.  They came right after you beat Oklahoma.  Can you talk about how the team is feeling about wanting to show people that you're a lot better team than you showed last year?
SETH DOEGE:  Yeah, the vibe around the locker room and the building is totally different than it was last year.  Guys are excited about this game, which they should be.  It's a big first test.  And we remember what happened the last two years; they definitely got, you know, did what they wanted against us and we didn't perform very well on offense.
So we are excited and you can tell, guys are focused and ready to play.  We have one common goal and that's to win a Big12 Championship and this is our first test?

Q.  How much does it help that you're not coming off that high of having beaten Oklahoma in and I think you said last year that some people sort of‑‑ they didn't try less hard, but there was some hang‑on.
SETH DOEGE:  Well, I guess it's a good thing that we've had a week off and everybody's recovered their bodies, and our first test is coming up and everybody's excited.  The excitement builds and we are ready to play.
We just need a really good week of preparation.  We started practice yesterday and we had a really good practice.  So you know, I think guys are focused and ready to go and we'll be ready on Saturday.

Q.  How productive was the bye week from an offensive standpoint?  Did you work on anything new?
SETH DOEGE:  It was a little bit of both of we're working on ourselves technique‑wise and at the same time, working towards Iowa State.
We actually had a really good week of practice and I think it was very productive for us as an offense to kind of tweak some things maybe fundamentally that we were struggling at the different positions and get better at those but at the same time start working towards Iowa State and have two weeks to prepare?

Q.  How close are you to where you wanted to be going into conference play?
SETH DOEGE:  Say again?

Q.  How close are you where you wanted to be going into conference play?  Are you close to where you wanted to be?
SETH DOEGE:  Yeah, we are exactly where we want to be.  I think we played well the first three games.  We took a step each and every week.  We have practiced well, prepared well and I think we are ready to start playing teams that are going to battle us all four quarters.

Q.  Talk about the importance of getting off to a fast start after the last two years, not really doing that?
SETH DOEGE:  Yeah, if you look at it, the year before last, they got up 24‑0 and then last year they got up 21‑0.  I might be backwards on that.
But if you let them‑‑ if you turn the ball over and let them start getting ahead of you, it's hard to catch up, because they do grind the clock a little bit on offense and they play fundamentally sound defense to where if you make a mistake, they are going to thrive on it.
So it's huge for us to get started and score points early; that we way we can get them out of their rhythm of just playing this solid, constant football and they actually have to get out of their element a little bit to catch up.

Q.  Is there any extra motivation from the two years, being such strange circumstances surrounding the game?  Any extra motivation to beat them this year?
SETH DOEGE:  I think the fact that the two scores that were posted around the locker room is enough motivation for us, and the fact that it's our first big test and our first game going into what our common goal is, to win a Big12 Championship, is motivation enough for us.

Q.  Can you talk about your experience in the games, what it's like?
SETH DOEGE:  Yeah, it's kind of similar to ours.  It's not like a huge stadium but they are very loud and they get very excited for football games.
So I think another reason to start early is to kind of take the crowd out of it, try to get the crowd out of it early.   But at the same time, it's a cool environment to play in.  Definitely a Big12 environment.
I think we mentioned to the young guys, the seniors there, that it's going to be different from what they have been playing in.  It's not Texas State.  It's a Big12 game and it's going to be a different atmosphere.

Q.  What you say, their defense, I know it's a different year, but going back to last year, do you think their defense is pretty stout this year?
SETH DOEGE:  You know, I thought they were good last year.  I think they are better this year.  I think they have got those two linebackers back that kind of lead the defense.  They are very good players.  I know up front they have got a couple good players and their free safety is really, really talented guy.
Their DBs, they might not be the biggest guys, but they compete and that's the one thing you see about Iowa State's defense is they play hard and they compete every snap.  So that's what makes them‑‑ I think that's what they challenge themselves to do.  They don't do a whole lot of blitzing and they don't do a whole lot of disguising coverages or anything, but they show you what they are going to do; and they are going to say, hey, come beat us, we are going to give you everything we've got.

Q.  When you say the linebackers are really good‑‑ when we are one‑on‑one with our slots or receivers, are we going to win those battles one‑on‑one?
SETH DOEGE:  I think we are more athletic than they are at that position.  It's just going to come.  Time will tell.

Q.  What will the linebackers against the running game?
SETH DOEGE:  I think they fit really well; they see the run, they come down the hill really fast.  It's just important that we play fundamentally assignment football in the running game and get our blocks, make correct cuts.  And I think it's going to be huge for our inside receivers to be a big factor in the blocking game, too, to kind of get in front of those linebackers and create some space.

Q.  How much pressure is off you now, knowing that you've got a defense that's capable of getting the job done?
SETH DOEGE:  It's a lot more comfortable.  I'm a lot more confident just because, say we don't start fast, I don't think we are going to be in as big of a hole as we were the last two years.  I could be wrong, but you know, being confident in our defense, I think that if we‑‑ maybe if we struggle a little bit offensively, we won't be 24 points behind and have to play a huge catch‑up game, instead of maybe we'll be down a touchdown or two and still be in the game

Q.  Do you feel like they are ready for the competition‑‑
SETH DOEGE:  I think they are.  I think both of them want to prove that they are.  Those are the type of guys that they are.  They work hard.  If you can see sitting here in our offensive meeting and watching those guys play, they both play really, really hard and they just keep getting better each and every week.  They are both going to be really big‑time football players before they leave here and right now they are going a great job and I think they are both excited to play.

Q.  Who are you talking about?
SETH DOEGE:  Alfredo Morales and Le'Raven Clark.

Q.  What do you tell the younger guys?
SETH DOEGE:  We just tell them, be prepared; mentally, be prepared; and physically, take care of yourself this week because it's going to be a battle.  It's not going to be, go play two quarters and then get taken out.  It's going to be a four‑quarter game and they are a very physical team.  It's going to be loud.  You're going to‑‑ not many people are going to be there cheering you on, so just got to mentally and physically be ready to roll.

Q.  This is a game everybody's had circled.  How do you guys manage not to get too pumped to the point where you can't go out and just do your job?
SETH DOEGE:  I think it's our leadership around our team.  And we kind of understand that you're only guaranteed 12 games and so there's no point to really press.  It's just, go out and have fun and that's what‑‑ something as leaders, as seniors, that we have kind of been‑‑ we wanted to change the culture around here is we wanted to have fun each and every game and not take it too seriously, because it is a game of football and the reason we play it is because we love it.  And so we just want to go enjoy it.
I think our seniors have done a really good job of preaching that and getting the guys relaxed and enjoy playing football, regardless of who we play.

Q.  Do you think the fact that some of the players have gone out after two quarters to give more players experience, will endurance be a factor?  Will having to play for four quarters show itself?
SETH DOEGE:  No, I don't think so, just because we do enough conditioning during practice; you would think that if we had to play four quarters, we would be ready to roll.  I'm talking of the guys, the starters and the two‑deep, I think we would be ready to roll.

Q.  Last year we came in before this game and you couldn't walk aroundwithout seeing all the signs; and this year you don't see all the signs.  Is that a signal to you and the team that it's more mature and better leadership; that you don't need to be reminded of the past?
SETH DOEGE:  Yeah, I think so.  Like you said, I think our leadership's done a really good job of taking care of this team and putting us in positions to win games.

Q.  Inaudible.
SETH DOEGE:  Inaudible ‑‑ and he's going to get to it.  He makes tremendous catches and a great effort guy during practice.  That's one thing is a guy will spell out for you in practice and you know he's going to spell out for you in a game.  And that's what Bradley does, each and every practice, he spells out and going into the game you know he's going to be even better just because he's excited and ready to play.  But that's a huge factor with me and Bradley is I trust him.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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