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ROSE BOWL GAME: MICHIGAN STATE v STANFORD


December 27, 2013


Darqueze Dennard


PASADENA, CALIFORNIA

DARQUEZE DENNARD:テつ I'm not sure yet.テつ Got a lot of guys capable.テつ Denicos is capable.テつ Kyler Elsworth is capable.テつ Darien Harris is capable, so we got a lot of guys that are capable to do the same things Matt did.テつ So we're just looking forward to practicing and getting ready to go.

Q.テつ Have you guys sort of gotten over the shock of not having a defensive back?
DARQUEZE DENNARD:テつ I think we got over the shock, but it happens.テつ It's part of the game.テつ It's just a little adversity we gotta go through.テつ So we're just moving on.

Q.テつ (No microphone)?
DARQUEZE DENNARD:テつ I think what makes us so strong is the bond we got with each other.テつ We don't want to let each other down.テつ We play for each other and have each other's back.テつ I think that's what really makes us the defense we is.テつ We all rely on each other and we all have fun.

Q.テつ (No microphone)?
DARQUEZE DENNARD:テつ We have a lot of those.テつ I probably would say Michigan is probably one of the best performances defense wise, total defense.テつ We held them to a negative 48 yards rushing, it's unheard of.テつ Caused turnovers, we sacked the quarterback.テつ We played a great game that game.

Q.テつ (No microphone).
DARQUEZE DENNARD:テつ We just we didn't make enough plays.テつ People complained about the officiating, but I think we didn't make enough plays on defense as well.テつ We shouldn't have let them score 17 points.テつ If we didn't let them score 17 points, we wouldn't be in the predicament.テつ We wouldn't have had the controversy about the calls or whatnot.
I think what it comes down to is we didn't make enough plays.テつ We didn't have enough turnovers to win the game for us and to help our offense out.テつ So that's the main thing I think about the whole game is we didn't make enough plays on defense.

Q.テつ (No microphone).
DARQUEZE DENNARD:テつ I think we all catch offense looking back and think about the game that should've‑could've‑would've you say, but I think from that game it motivated us to the game‑‑ to the future games we played.
It's just like going into Iowa, we knew what we had to do.テつ We took a lot of positive things from Notre Dame, and we just put it to all the other games we played in.テつ I think that really helped us and motivated us as a team.

Q.テつ (No microphone)?
DARQUEZE DENNARD:テつ I'm a defensive guy.テつ So you know, I'm thinking it's going to be a low‑scoring game.テつ I think every defensive player is thinking it's going to be a low‑scoring game, and with our mindset we don't want them to score.テつ And that's our goal.
I know our offense has been doing a great job the last couple of weeks, and they're going to do their thing.テつ We all have confidence in each other, and I think they go out with the mindset of scoring every possession they have.テつ I know they're going to do a good job.テつ It's just going to come down to us just playing great defense like we've played this year and limiting them from doing the things they've been doing so well throughout the year and try to let them not score.

Q.テつ (No microphone).
DARQUEZE DENNARD:テつ We're definitely going in confident.テつ We kind of look at Stanford as a spitting image of us.テつ They pride themselves on toughness.テつ They run the ball, run the ball completely times of the game, and they really look like the spitting image of us.テつ So we're coming in the game like we gotta stop the run.テつ They do remind us of a Big Ten school, and they pride themselves on toughness and they run the ball and they have a great O line and they do a great job pushing the power forward and the running back do a great job of hitting it up hard.テつ So they do remind us of a BIG TEN team school.テつ But I think they kind of play into our hands as well, because we come into playing a BIG TEN and knowing they want to find the ball and we want to stop the run, and it's going to be the low physical team will win.

Q.テつ (No microphone).
DARQUEZE DENNARD:テつ I think he got a little orthodox style, to tell you the truth.テつ But I love playing with this guy.テつ I love him to death.テつ Pretty much look at him like a father figure in my life.テつ He did a great job of me growing up as a kid and also showing me the ropes playing football and giving my knowledge of the game better as well.
But the passion he brings every week in, week out, you don't see that too much in coaches I think around the country.テつ He's a very passionate guy about this game.テつ He loves the game, and the rest of the coaching staff loves it as well, and when you got those guys being passionate and showing you how much they care, it just makes you want to play harder for them.

Q.テつ (No microphone).
DARQUEZE DENNARD:テつ I'd say‑‑ I mean a lot of coaches won't do the type things he do.テつ He's a very passionate guy.テつ He's a rah‑rah type guy, kind of leader.テつ He will get in your face when you need to hear it.テつ He won't shy away.テつ He'll tell you how it is, which every player on this team really, I think really loves that about him.テつ He makes us all play better.テつ And when you see him really passionate and get in your face, everybody knows, like we gotta play better.

Q.テつ (No microphone).
DARQUEZE DENNARD:テつ We basically got a creed, got like a creed.テつ It's Spartan Dawg defense.テつ That's what we always say.テつ We make up a plaque every year saying some things like what we want to do during the game and throughout the season.テつ And the things we put‑‑ the main couple things we put on the creed was be dominant, strike fear in everybody's hearts when stepping on the field, be the best defense in the nation and that's the Spartan Dawg mindset.テつ We go out there every day try to dominate, play fast, cause turnovers and be the best defense in the nation, and I think we did that this year.

Q.テつ (No microphone)?
DARQUEZE DENNARD:テつ Spartan Dawg defense.テつ Thank you.

Q.テつ (No microphone).
DARQUEZE DENNARD:テつ I'm pretty much as a corner, I think, I don't shy away from no contact.テつ When they do line up in there, they're just going to make me be even more stern.テつ I'm going to put my big boy shoulder pads you could say, try to play linebacker pretty much.
But it's going to be fun.テつ I love just to have the opportunity to help out the front seven when they need me to do it, and that's what pretty much I need to do.テつ Pretty much in the box, the best man whoever push the hardest fight the hardest and whoever be the toughest and have the most effort is going to win it.

Q.テつ (No microphone).
DARQUEZE DENNARD:テつ I don't think we played anybody like that yet, to have eight or nine linemen in a game at the same time.テつ I don't think we played anything like that.テつ But we practiced it.テつ We have packages for that, and we've actually been waiting to see a team like that, actually, because we can show them we're not afraid, we can play with the big boys, too.

Q.テつ (No microphone).
DARQUEZE DENNARD:テつ I think we play like four teams, four or five teams that's spread.テつ Mainly Nebraska is spread, Ohio State obviously, Notre Dame, Northwestern.テつ I think those teams pretty much spread, but everybody else in the BIG TEN pretty much pride themselves on running the ball, like the Iowas and the Purdues and the Minnesotas.テつ A lot of those guys pride themselves on running the ball.
We really‑‑ it isn't nothing new to us.テつ We're going to go in with the same mindset of playing a BIG TEN team school, which Stanford is a good team.テつ You can't overlook that.テつ They be in the top 10 every year.テつ Great coaching staff, they have also great players as well.テつ So we're just looking forward to the challenge.テつ We're happy to be here in Pasadena to have the opportunity to win the Rose Bowl and we're looking forward to it.

Q.テつ (No microphone).
DARQUEZE DENNARD:テつ He's a great player.テつ To run, he's a big guy; you really don't see big guys run that well like he do.テつ He's fast.テつ He catch the ball.テつ I mean he's great after the catch as well.テつ When you get the ball in his hands, he got any chance to go 99 yards with the quickness.テつ Great player.テつ I love the way he play the game, and he's a good player.テつ I'm really looking forward to the challenge.

Q.テつ (No microphone)?
DARQUEZE DENNARD:テつ You know, I'm a Georgia guy.テつ So I love the heat.テつ So it's nothing new to me.テつ I can play in all weather pretty much.テつ I love it out here.テつ It's a great stadium to be in, my first time being here.テつ I'm actually enjoying myself.テつ The weather is great.テつ Like back home it's a lot of humidity back home in Georgia, but here it's nice, clean air.テつ You can breathe really well.テつ And it's just a great weather, not too hot, not too cold.テつ Great weather.テつ I think everybody out here is enjoying themselves.テつ I think everybody really like this weather.

Q.テつ (No microphone).
DARQUEZE DENNARD:テつ I think their passing game is a little underrated.テつ I think people underrate them because they run the style how they bring eight guys in to run the ball.テつ Those guys do a great job.テつ They catch the ball; they run good.
Ty Montgomery, he's great after the catch.テつ Everybody knows when he gets the ball, he have every chance to go 99 with the quickness.テつ Great player.
All those guys do a great job, running routes and catching the ball, and quarterback do a great job as well.テつ I think their passing game is a little underrated.テつ But everybody in the secondary, we know we got a big task in front of us and we're really looking forward to the challenge.

Q.テつ (No microphone).
DARQUEZE DENNARD:テつ The team did a great job this year focusing on making goals and actually achieving those goals.テつ I also look forward to having this opportunity.テつ We haven't been here since '88, which is a long time.テつ And everybody is excited about this challenge.
It's not only about us; it's about past players as well that I played with, such as Kirk Cousins and Trent Robinson and Johnny Adams and Chris L. Rucker and all those guys that played before me and put all the work in to help us.テつ And it's still the Spartan Dawg way.テつ You can say it's not only about us.テつ It's about Spartan Nation as well and the guys that play before us, like I was just saying.テつ So I think it's more bigger than us.
So I think we gotta have the mindset to go out here and win this game, prove everybody wrong and continue to come back to Pasadena.

Q.テつ How does a guy from Georgia SEC country end up at Michigan State?
DARQUEZE DENNARD:テつ My thought is this is only my shot pretty much.テつ What I think it is, I think it was just God, God's work.テつ Everything happens for a reason and end up here, loving the place.テつ Came up on a visit and loving the place actually and fell in love with my teammates, and ever since then, I know this is the team to be on.テつ And coming up here and seeing the lifestyle of these guys and being with the guys, pride themselves on toughness, playing in the cold and negative three or something crazy like that and snowing and whatever.
So it was all new to me, but I think it was just God's work.テつ Really, this has been truly a blessing for the last four years, probably the best years of my life, and I always remember, I treasure these moments, and I think Coach D and the coaching staff have given me this opportunity.

Q.テつ (No microphone).
DARQUEZE DENNARD:テつ Some guys, you know, some guys ask me before going up there why you going up there, why you didn't go to Georgia, why you didn't go to Georgia Tech, and I explain why I didn't and I come back home and I hear people, man, they messed up, they did this, they did that, but hey, I mean you get a little mixed emotions like that.テつ A lot of people where I'm from actually became Michigan State Spartans fans.テつ They root for Michigan State week in, week out, and this is the team to do it because I came here.
And so I think with me growing up there, they kind of changed their lifestyle down there where I stay at.テつ So they got introduced to the BIG TEN, so they fell in love with the BIG TEN as well.

Q.テつ (No microphone).
DARQUEZE DENNARD:テつ Take it and ran with it.

Q.テつ (No microphone).
DARQUEZE DENNARD:テつ No.テつ It doesn't actually.テつ It went by really fast.テつ I'm just now realizing when I went back home, this is my last time playing in a Michigan State jersey.テつ It's been a fun ride this season; the ups and downs throughout the season, mostly ups, having fun with my teammates and my best friends that I've made over these last four years, and it's been a very fun time, and also just knowing all of us set goals in the beginning of the year and just achieving those goals is just a really blessing.

Q.テつ (No microphone).
DARQUEZE DENNARD:テつ Just some adversity we gotta go through.テつ It's not going to be the first time we have adversity.テつ Isaiah went down this year.テつ We had another guy, R.J. Williamson come in to play.テつ That's what we're going to do, and we're just going to put him in play, because the goal is still the same.テつ We came here to win the Rose Bowl.テつ All the goals are still the same.テつ We're just going to bring it home for him.

Q.テつ (No microphone).
DARQUEZE DENNARD:テつ Yeah.テつ A lot of those guys on the defense, such as me, such as Denicos and Isaiah and the rest of the guys around the football team, just gotta feel the bond together and the defense has gotta communicate a little bit better.テつ A lot of guys know we have to put out more, we have to communicate more.テつ But we just gotta pledge on and keep moving.

Q.テつ (No microphone).
DARQUEZE DENNARD:テつ Yeah.テつ It definitely helps.テつ Everybody really‑‑ we know adversity.テつ A lot of guys that went down this year and just had to pretty much plug and play and bring the young along and that's what we've been doing.

Q.テつ (No microphone).

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports




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