UH vs. Utah State pregame quotes

About how UH and Portland State were staying at the same hotel (PSU plays Weber State in Ogden, and both teams are staying in Ogden’s largest hotel), PSU head coach Jerry Glanville said:
“It’s good to see everyone again.” (HA)

HA Note: “The reunion is timely as the Warriors are resurrecting elements of the run-and-shoot that were downplayed in recent games. The experiment of the rollout-and-read schemes will be minimized, and the run-and-shoot, usually directed from the pass pocket, will be turned over to quarterback Greg Alexander.”

The Warriors worked each week with the goal of opening up their pass-first offense, and with Alexander’s emergence in the Nevada game Mac said that:
“we’re finally at that point.” (HA)

About the “night and day” improvement that Alexander had with the offense between the Florida and Nevada games, Rolo said:
“That’s what happens when you really get it. In September, (Alexander) could have gone up and drawn every play we had on the board. He had the memorization down. But the field part is something that comes with reps and time.” (HA)

About how hard it is for QBs learning their system, Rolo said:
“You think you know it, but you really have no idea.” (HA)

About how Alexander reacted to his Florida struggles, Rolo said:
“I think that Florida game humbled him. I think you need to be humbled a little bit. … Once you get that oh-I-don’t-really-know-it-all feeling, it hits you, then you have to work harder and ask more questions and pay more attention.” (HA)

About how he needed to be humbled when he started with the Warriors, Rolo said:
“I was probably too cocky about it going in. Then you get the snap, and you’re like, ‘What’s happening?’ There’s always movements. It’s like a blur.” (HA)

HA note; “But last week, if only for a half, Alexander caught up to the offense. The proof, Rolovich said, was not in Alexander’s winning pass, but in three subtle plays. On the first, Alexander went through his read progression while sneaking a look at Washington, who had made a U-turn on a route on the left side. Alexander threw to Washington, who then fought his way for a first down. On the second, Alexander correctly read a defensive end crashing down from the right side. Alexander kept the ball and scrambled for a first down. On the third, Alexander lofted a pass to Washington on a corner route. The ball was in flight before Washington made his break”.

About Alexander’s pass to Washington, Rolo said:
“It’s a timing thing. You can’t wait for (Washington) to be open. You have to throw it to a spot. That’s something he’s starting to get. It looked like they had nice chemistry.” (HA)

About how Ron Lee was criticized for his cautious play-calling in past weeks, Rolo talked about how Ron was trying to limit the mistakes of a developing offense:
“He did what he felt was our strength (at the time).” (HA)

About Ron Lee, Rolo said:
“You’ve got to have some (guts) to call this offense. (Lee is) really stepping up. I mean, his scripts, play-calling, the different concepts he’s throwing into practices — it’s been great.” (HA)

HA Note: “Rolovich said sometimes plays are designed to set up other plays. Last week, Washington made a down-and-out cut to get open. Later, the Warriors ran the same play. The safety, remembering Washington’s previous pattern, tried to cheat to the outside. Washington then looped around and raced upfield to make a catch.”

About how Ron Lee sets up plays in games, Rolo said:
“Ronnie has done a great job of setting up plays.” (HA)

HA Note: “Last week, the Warriors finally unveiled the fly sweep, a play kept under wraps since training camp. The scheme, which was borrowed from Willamette University, calls for an in-motion slotback to run laterally and then take the handoff. Mouton ran the play once, with little success. Or so it seemed. The play stretches wide the defense, and even if Mouton is a diversion and does not get the handoff, it creates more open areas for the receivers.”

Not worried about the 4,500 elevation at Logan, Utah, Mac said:
“Altitude isn’t going to affect us, and we have good depth. We’re going to play a lot of people. These guys are in good condition. They’re in as good condition as any team I’ve had.” (HA)

About how Utah State never recruited him despite how badly he wanted to go there, Tim Grasso said:
“I never once got a callback. I got a callback from everyone else but Utah State, and that’s where I was trying to go. … But I never heard back. It is what it is.” (HA)

HA Note: “Grasso, who grew in nearby Kaysville, Utah, had wanted to attend Utah State. He tried three times — as a senior in high school, as a freshman at Dixie State College and as a sophomore at Saddleback Community College.”

Happy that he’s punting for Hawaii, Grasso said:
“I’m glad I went to Hawai’i. I tried (to go to Utah State), but I’m in a better place now. It’s a good thing they didn’t call.” (HA)

About how he loves Logan, Utah, Grasso said:
“They’re the nicest people,” he said. “This is a great place.” (HA)

About the importance of his in-season weight training, David Veikune said:
“I have to make sure I keep my strength up. I’m always working out.” (HA)

About how Desmond Thomas is now their #1 free safety, Rich Miano said:
“He deserves a chance.” (HA)

About how Nevada did not double-team him when he was the gunner on punts last week, JoPierre Davis said:
“We talked about that: if they don’t double team, you’ve got to win. I tried to make a play. Now I want to be able to work through a double team in the same way. Even if they do double-team me, I still have to make a play.” (HA)

About how Borel was a WR last year but now is Utah State’s top passer and runner, Rich Miano said:
“I put him in the baller category. He can straight out make you miss.” (HA)

About how Utah State will be prepared well for their game, Mac said:
“We’re coming on a business trip. I know they’re going to be prepared because (Utah State’s) Brent Guy is an excellent coach and he is a guy I really respect. I know his guys are going to play hard and are going to be well-coached, just like they showed last week against Fresno.” (HSB)

About how Utah State tried all types of things against Fresno State last week, Mac said:
“They faked a field goal, they went onside, they went for it on fourth and 1 in their territory. They have nothing to lose, so we’ve got to prepare for everything.” (HSB)

About how they put their win over Nevada behind them, Mac said:
“That game seems like last month.” (HSB)

About how UH has dominated them (scoring at least 50 points in each game since they entered the WAC in 2005), Guy said:
“We haven’t played well against Hawaii since we came into the league. So this is a game where we have to prove we can play with one of the top teams in the conference, which they are.” (HSB)

About how the Nevada game success has changed his offensive unit in their practices, Ron Lee said:
“I see the difference in the guys. You see some flashes, but we’ll know more (today).”

HSB Note: “Utah State is giving up 38.3 points per game, ranking the Aggies 114th in the country, and “we’re one tackle away” from closing out the win against Fresno State last week. Linebacker Jake Hutton is the leader of the Aggies defense with 70 tackles, including 5 1/2 for losses.”

About how QB Diondre Borel is getting better in the passing game, Utah State coach Brent Guy said:
“He’s not just scrambling to run anymore. He’s starting to make big plays off his scramble game.” (HSB)

About defending a QB with Borel’s mobility, Mac said:
“It’s a discipline, assignment game. We have to play our responsibilities and get better at open-field tackles, because if you don’t, you give up a big play.” (HSB)

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