Quotes about Weber State

About the local food he wanted yesterday, St. Louis grad Cameron Higgins said:
“I wanted a Zip-Pac from Zippy’s.” (HA)

HA Note: “The wish was fulfilled, thanks to Bulla and Lynette Eastman, parents of Wildcat defensive tackle Ryan “The Beast” Eastman. The Eastmans brought 90 Zip-Pacs — a plate lunch featuring chicken, teriyaki beef and Spam over furikake rice — and refreshments for the visiting players and coaches.”

About how his local players wanted local food, Weber State coach Ron McBride said:
“We asked (the Hawai’i-raised) players what they wanted to do, and they all said: ‘Get a plate lunch.’ We wanted a little local flavor right away.” (HA)

HA Note: “The Wildcats’ roster also has a local flavor. There are 10 players with Hawai’i ties. Defensive line coach Chad Kauha’aha’a is a Baldwin High graduate. During his 16 years as a head coach, including a stint at Utah, McBride created a recruiting base in Hawai’i. McBride once looked at videotape of a 260-pound fullback and decided he would be a tailback at Utah. Even the recruit’s family disagreed with that assessment. But Chris Fuamatu-Ma’afala went on to have a successful career as a Utah tailback and an NFL running back.”

About how he wanted Fuamatu-Ma’afala to be a tailback, McBride said:
“Right from the beginning, we wanted him to be a tailback.” (HA)

About the increased competition in Hawaii for recruits, McBride said:
“It’s harder (to recruit) over here now. There are so many people recruiting (here). Before, it was Utah, BYU, Washington and Oregon. Now you come over here, and everybody’s here. It’s people from all over — Penn State, Wisconsin. But there are enough good players here. And there are more Polynesians in the coaching profession. You have more people with ties over here.” (HA)

McBride is in his 4th season at Weber State and said that he still has the “love” for coaching, but:
“what I’d like to do is build this program into something special, and then kind of go into the twilight.” (HA)

About how Weber State has had their “struggles”, McBride said:
“We’re not there. We’re getting closer. … Obviously, this game will be a good test for us to see if we’re decent and we can stand up to a good, physically hard-nosed football team.” (HA)

About how Higgins is their leader, Ryan Eastman said:
“He’s being a team leader. He’s doing that role now and he prepares for every practice, for every game. He doesn’t goof off at all. He hits the weight room. He does everything a leader should.” (HSB)

About facing UH, Higgins said:
“Just treating it like another game. It’s not really a homecoming. You’ve just got to treat it like any other game. Just be focused a little bit more.” (HSB)

About how the players from Hawaii are excited to play at Aloha Stadium, Ryan Eastman said:
“We’re all just excited to go back home to say to our family and friends and our coaches, if they come to the game, thank you. Thank you for getting us this far.” (HSB)

About how Ryan tackled him during their first practice, forgetting that QBs were off limits, Higgins said:
“He tackled me and Coach (Ron McBride) just went off on him. Later in the locker room I was like, ‘I thought we Saint Louis boys. I thought you weren’t going to hit me.’ ” (HSB)

About getting chewed out for the hit, Ryan said:
“Yeah, I did it, but it was worth it. It was funny.” (HSB)

About how he got a chance to evaluate his brother Jeremy (starting QB at Saint Louis) a couple of weeks ago when Jeremy’s game was broadcast on the Internet, Cameron Higgins said:
“He was all right. I can’t let him get too cocky. Can’t give him too much praise or else it will go to his head.” (HSB)

About how he remembers the shutout loss to Punahou in an ILH playoff game that he played at Aloha Stadium during his senior year, Higgins said:
“We didn’t play well. I got hurt in the third quarter and couldn’t come back in and that was it.” (HSB)

HSB Note: “His backup at the time was Jeremiah Masoli, who is now a quarterback at Oregon and saw extensive playing time last week against Washington.”

About how he tells people that the starting QB at Oregon was his backup in high school, Higgins said while laughing:
“Yeah, I tell everyone up here he was my backup.” (HSB)

About the Weber State offense, Higgins said:
“We’ll do a little bit of everything. We’ll spread it out at times, we’ll go two tight ends and two running backs, and we’ll play smash-mouth football a little bit. From there, we’ll see what happens.” (HSB)

HSB Note: “Weber State landed in Honolulu yesterday afternoon and headed straight to Aloha Stadium for practice, where 80 Zip-Pacs – courtesy of freshman defensive tackle and Saint Louis grad Ryan Eastman’s family – awaited the Wildcats.”

About the Zip-Pacs, Higgins said:
“That’s exactly what I was craving on the plane. We were hyping Zippy’s up, the chicken, the rice. No more rice in Utah.” (HSB)

About how he met the Weber State team and his former coach (McBride) at the Stadium yesterday, Chris Fuamatu-Maafala said:
“It was good to talk about the college days. He was just making fun of me and how when we were studying tape I would always be late.” (HSB)

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