FROM PULLMAN -- It's Tuesday, which means coach Mike Leach answered questions for about 10 minutes during the Pac-12 coaches call. We have a recap of his segment below.
(Whether struggles against FCS school are indicative of a long rebuilding phase) "It’s difficult to say. I think some of the FCS schools are really good, the other thing, the reality is I don’t know much about the team UNLV played, but Eastern Washington has won, they have a tradition of winning and they can get some guys in school we can’t. We squandered some opportunities. We don’t worry about four-year plans or any of that stuff, we just worry about doing our best from one year to the next."
(Is Connor Halliday a better fit than Jeff Tuel?) "I think they’re both good. I don’t think there’s necessarily a fit issue either way."
(Is this a big game for you in terms of getting something going?) "I view all games as very important. I don’t see any of them as unimportant. You’re building your skills as a football player. I think if that’s important to you at all, each week and every game rep is an opportunity to develop your skills and I don’t think you can afford to squander any of it."
(On the pass rush last week) "I thought we did some good things, thought we were kind of fast and flashy out there a little bit. Defensively we played pretty good other than the explosives. We gave up more yards in explosives than all the rest of the downs combined so that’s something we need to try to duplicate."
(On chances of overlooking UNLV) "There better not be. We haven’t proven anything. We need to focus on ourselves and play the best we can play. We haven’t proven anything. We need to go out there and play the best we can which we have not done this year and then make it a habit after that. No, this game’s very important to us and we need to go out there and play very well."
(Do you bring your readings and interests to the team?) "There’a a lot of ways and examples to define your point and I think you just try to do that the best you can with the material at hand. Football can get monotonous so I think you try to add a little variety to it where you can."
(Is the offense beginning to catch on?) "I think they’re beginning to and they’ve been beginning to. I think we need to accelerate the process."
(How do you accelerate it?) "A lot of it, you just need to play with one another. Part of it we’re dealing with is a lot of guys haven’t played college football before, so we’ve got to accelerate that process. We’ve got an awful lot of people that haven’t started a game so that’s the process we need to accelerate."
(Thoughts on the Pac-12's weekend) "I thought it was impressive. It doesn’t surprise me that much. Yes I think it helps but I think there’s ups and downs for leagues and teams and whatnot. It’s real early in the season. Again, doesn’t surprise me. I thought the Pac-12 was good to begin with but I wouldn’t put a ton into it. ... it is impressive and really doesn’t surprise me."
(Did you go after Mike Bowlin because you needed a punter, a kickoff specialist or to push Andrew Furney?) "All of the above. We knew he could punt and kick. We needed a punter the most. Furney does a lot of good things and occasionally kicks it through the end zone, Bowlin can most of the time. Number one was punter, kick it through the end zone was second, and we knew Furney was pretty decent at field goals."