Pregame quotes for the UH-NMSU game

About their problems on the OL, NMSU coach Hal Mumme said:
“We’ve played eight football games and we’ve started four different left tackles and we’ve started two centers, two different right tackles. We’ve had a hard time with twists and rush because of that.” (HSB)

About how Hal Mumme runs a similar offense to what Mike Leach runs at Texas Tech (where he was defensive coordinator), Mac said:
“(Mumme) taught Leach what he knows and that’s his system. He knows how to move the football.” (HSB)

Asked about their 9.5 points per game for road games not counting the Fresno State game, Ron Lee said:
“That has nothing to do with the road. We just need to execute better. I think we did a good job of prepping — now we just have to go do it.” (HSB)

About how he wished to play at NMSU’s stadium when he lived in Las Cruces from the 7th grade to his sophomore year in high school, David Veikune said:
“I remember growing up and wishing I could play on that field, and now it’s a reality. It’s a treat to go back home.” (HSB)

About how his family was stationed at Fort Bliss in El Paso when he was a kid, Mike Washington said:
“It was some of the best years I had, staying here in Fort Bliss. I was here for 2-3 years and had a lot of friends out here.” (HSB)

Having gotten acclimated over a week in El Paso, the Warriors enter their final road game of the season looking to avoid being swept on a two-game mainland swing that started with a loss at Utah State a week ago.

About the importance of this game, Mac siad:
“It’s an important game, It’s important to both teams.” (HA)

About how they need to win 3 of 4 to make the Hawaii Bowl, Mac said:
“We’re playing this game to go to the Sheraton Hawai’i Bowl. But we have all kinds of reasons to play. We’re not happy with our performance last week. We have to get back on track.” (HA)

About how it is hard to win on the road, Mac said:
“It’s going to be a dog fight. And it’s going to be tough because it’s on the road. It’s tough to win on the road.” (HA)

HA Note: “Assistant coaches Dave Aranda and Ikaika Malloe made the five-hour, round-trip drive yesterday to meet with the coaches and school counselors of a targeted recruit. After the game, some coaches will remain on the Mainland to scout prospects.”

HA Note: “There was a team outing to the movie multi-plex Thursday night, and the players were allowed some free time yesterday evening between dinner and meetings.”

About how their team has a lot of seniors (30 of the 64 players on the travel roster are seniors) who know how to get ready for the game, Mac said:
“These guys are smart. We have a lot of college seniors. They know what’s on the line. We don’t have to do a lot of jumping up and down to motivate them.” (HA)

“They know what they’re doing.” (HA)

About how they will have to use a lot of nickel and possibly dime defensive in this game, Mac said:
“It’s all about matchups.” (HA)

About how Oren Long (starting right DT for NMSU) has been considered family by Cal Lee and him, Ron Lee said:
“He’s like part of the family. I coached his dad (Collins) at Kalani and his uncle (Scott) at Kaiser.” (HA)

“He’s a good kid; part of the family. He wasn’t the biggest kid — he was slender (coming out of high school) — but had talent and worked hard with a good attitude.” (HA)

HA Note: “Moreover, Oren was at Saint Louis School with Cal Lee, UH’s defensive coordinator, and his cousin, Keahiahi, works in the UH football office.”

About the Lee brothers, Oren Long said:
“I have a strong relationship with both Cal and Ron Lee, who are extremely good coaches.” (HA)

When he ran into the Lees awhile ago, the 6’2″, 260-pound Oren Long said:
“Coach Cal said, just in passing, ‘Wow, we let one go.’ I was kind of flattered by the comment.” (HA)

About his interest in playing for UH, Oren Long said that:
“everybody wants to play for their home team but I just looked at it as an opportunity to come to New Mexico State, thrive and get a good education.” (HA)

About having extra motivation for this game, Oren Long said:
“You always want to do good against someplace that didn’t really want you.” (HA)

About Long, Cal Lee said:
“I’m very happy to see the success he’s had.” (HA)

About how he plans to have the team stay on the mainland between their road games at Washington State (moved to Seattle) and UNLV, Mac said:
“we’ll probably stay in Las Vegas.” (HA)

After punter Tim Grasso tried to place the ball in the corner inside the 5-yard-line but missed slightly, Rich Miano said:
“That would have been in Canada.” (HA)

Asked if Desmond Thomas or Keao Monteilh will start today, Rich Miano said:
“It is like the election, there is a popular vote and, then, there is the electoral college. We’re still evaluating the candidates in the electoral college.” (HA)

About how the team gathered in a banquet room to watch Vili Nauahi compete on Wheel of Fortune, Mac said:
“This is pretty exciting.” (HA)

HA Note: “And then it was showtime. And with each correct answer, the Warriors broke into cheers and chants of “Vili … Vili …” Although linebacker Vili Nauahi had competed on “Wheel of Fortune” two months ago, the show aired yesterday. There was one notable absence — Nauahi. Because it appeared there would be technical difficulties, Nauahi went to his hotel room, and shut off his cell phone, not knowing that the show could be projected onto a big screen. Nauahi, who solved the puzzles “Hand-rolled sushi” and “Beijing,” won $41,000 in cash, plus a trip to San Francisco valued at $6,560. He also provided inspiration for a football team in need of optimism.”

HA Note: “During a break, Nauahi sat in the sofa in the lobby. Every congratulations stated with: “Hand-rolled sushi.””

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