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Mike Leach, body language and more

COUGARS

FROM PULLMAN — Along with three Washington State players, coach Mike Leach met with the media in a formal setting for about 10 minutes. Here's a transcript of said media session.


(On changes from last week) “The biggest thing, we need to play better. We’re not going to change anything. We need to change our attitude, we need to change the way we go out and play from one play to the next, and play fast. There’s not going to be a ton of changes out here other than emphasis on effort and focus and that type of thing.”

(Are there similarities between your offense and EWU's?) “I think there is. Played them several years back at Texas Tech. They throw it well, good at getting it to a lot of different people and I think they play really hard. I don’t think it’s an accident that they’ve had all the success in the past that they have. I think they do a lot of good things right and they have for a long time.”

(Does it take winning to gain confidence?) “I don’t know but I know this. You only get so many reps out there on a football field in your entire life and you better make the most of them. If you’re going to go out there and practice all week long and you’re going to work on reps out there in practice, now all of a sudden you have game reps, you better do something other than pout on the sideline. Obviously that’s something we as coaches need to address and we as coaches failed to get across to them last week. There’s no question about that. If you want to know how good you’re coaching, turn on the film and look at how they play.”

(Any bright spots from Thursday?) “Just individual plays, individual efforts. I thought our defense played good a significant portion of the second half. I think that, just our overall playing together, rising at key times, making plays happen at key times in games. That type of thing I think is pretty important. I think it’s a combination of a lot more than that. Obviously their defense is a factor, they’re a really big team, their strength is ther front. There’s not some place on offense that we played very well last week so it all works together. It’s a combination of sometimes we miss a guy, sometimes we miss a block, a receiver doesn’t run a route or we have something good going on and we don’t block. It’s not like there’s just one thing. There’s never just one thing. It’s just overall playing together and we can get it on the practice field fairly consistently. Now we need to get it on the game field.”

(On Jeff Tuel scrambling) “Maybe, but the biggest  thing he does, he does a pretty good job keeping it alive. He got out of some stuff I didn’t think he’d get out of. He got out of some stuff and made some good plays on some stuff where he had people all around him and it was impressive that he got out of it. One of them he scrambled and threw the ball to Marquess (Wilson).”

(On the defense) “I thought they looked good the second half. I thought they looked very soft the first half, I thought the second half they rose up. I thought (Ioane) Gauta played good. I just thought as a unit they tightened up the second half.”

(On Mike Breske's experience against Eastern) “I think we’ll definitely talk about it. He’s played them several times so I think that’ll be helpful.”

(On media policy) “You don’t like it because you don’t get to disrupt them throughout the week. I think by any standard my media policy’s pretty generous because I’ve got guys trying to focus on improving their skills. I can have you talk to them today or after a game or I can let you badger them all week. So I decided to limit it to today and after the game and that way they can focus on their job and things like that. So that’s it. It’s about as simple as that. There’s certainly places that are far more oppressive than us but we’re givers and we give where we can. We as coaches are available pretty much 24 hours a day to the media and we’re happy to do that. But as far as interrupting the work of our players as we go about our business, we reserve the right to protect their focus.”

(More on body language and Marquess Wilson) “We spent more time putting on little frustration demonstrations than playing football. That’s the problem. I’m not having him pout or anyone else.”

(On whether Connor Halliday might play before Pac-12 season) “Don’t know. We’ll see what happens. Probably at some point.”

Christian Caple can be reached at christianc@spokesman.com. Twitter: @ChristianCaple


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