Here are some more notes and quotes from Pac-12 media day. And part I is here.
USC coach Lane Kiffin on Matt Barkley's decision not to enter the NFL draft: As we went through the process after the season of Matt figuring this out, and once again figuring this out, and as Matt had questions again today, they were about how did you convince him to stay? And I think Matt would be the first to tell you, I didn't recruit Matt to stay. Sometimes we recruit kids to stay because they're projected as a second- or third-round picks, and they could stay and work on things and get better. Matt was completely ready for the NFL. I assume he would have been a top-5 pick, totally ready to go in and be the face of a franchise and be ready to play in the NFL. His situation was different, and I think it was about him wanting to do something special. What some people have written, he may be able to go down as the most historic Trojan ever if we do big things this year.
Cougars QB Jeff Tuel credited the new coaching staff with taking the level of confidence and excitement around the program to a new level.
Washington State QB Jeff Tuel on former coach Paul Wulff and whether there needed to be change after last year: Obviously I think a lot of people felt that way, but Coach Wulff was doing a great job of recruiting, the program was at such a low when I came in as a freshman and he started working hard. I think Coach Leach would tip his hat to that. What this coaching staff has done with this program is, I think, safe to say something that the old coaching staff would never have done. The level of confidence that they bring to this program and the level of excitement that they bring to the university is tremendous.
Oregon State coach Mike Riley on whether he was surprised by defensive end Scott Crichton's productivity in 2011: I wouldn't say I was surprised. You never really -- you see the talent and you know the capability is there. And of course, we had redshirted him. So I watched him on the scout team and knew what was there, but then the fact is he can bring it to the games and produce like that. He is talented and the thing I like about Scott Crichton and Dylan Wynn, they both improved their numbers dramatically, speed, strength, in the offseason. So I appreciate that work ethic from two guys that did well as freshmen. And that's been what I've seen as an identity of this group, in general. I think Scott is a good example of that, continuing to grow.
California coach Jeff Tedford on the Golden Bears long Rose Bowl drought: There is no doubt I think if you asked our fans whether they want to be in a National Championship or the Rose Bowl, it's the Rose Bowl, and it's the measuring stick on where you want to be. Every year we set out to do that, and we've been close a couple of times but haven't knocked that door down. Excited about the opportunity this year as the season starts anew to strive to get there again. I know it's been a long, long time and it would feel great if this was the group that was able to do it obviously.
Tedford on the status of injured guard/center Dominic Galas: Dominic pulled his pec muscle off his bone, his shoulder, and he's having surgery this afternoon, I believe. Depending on how that looks when they get in there will depend on the rehab time, but initially they talked about maybe three months for rehab which would put him somewhere I believe in the October range.
Washington coach Steve Sarkisian on his offensive line: The questions are obvious. When you think you return four starters, you lose one to a medical hardship in [Colin] Porter and you're down to three and one of them is coming off a knee, you have concerns. I think we have depth and versatility at the position, and we will be able to do things to make that happen. Obviously, that is one of our question marks, who are going to be our five guys? Where do they fit, making sure that our best players are in the toughest positions so we can be successful. You're going to see times at training camp, Drew Schaefer will be at tackle, Taniela [Tupou] at center and [Erik] Kohler at center, and we will do it time and again to get the best five guys to be successful on the field, so we can run the football the best and protect this guy and so that we have the best continuity as we continue to move forward. Like anything, we have question marks. The O-line happens to be one of those.
Stanford coach David Shaw on the departure of tight end Coby Fleener and whether the Cardinal can still use three-tight-end sets: We're going to do everything we can with the guys we have. We have been able to play with three tight ends, we moved Luke Kaumatule from a defensive end and he will be a true freshman at the tight end position for us. We've moved Jemari Roberts to the tight end position. We have a bevy of fullbacks, unlike most in the nation. Ryan Hewitt is the most versatile college football player you can find. So, for us, it's about mixing and matching, and doing the things that help us be consistent and successful on the offensive side, not to mention we will play a lot of those big guys on the offensive line. So some of those guys you will see lineup at tight end positions, as well.
Oregon coach Chip Kelly on De'Anthony Thomas and whether running back Kenjon Barner can carry the ball as much as LaMichael James: I don't know what [position] De'Anthonoy is. I think he's a special talent that you figure out how to use him and get him the football. I believe Kenjon can handle the load. We don't want anybody to be carrying the ball 30 times a game and that happened in LaMichael's career just because maybe Kenjon wasn't available in that game. But usually, we have two guys and we split the carries between those two. So depending on the depth behind those two guys will determine how we will use them. But you will see them both on the field at the same time, and I think what that presents to a defense with some of the other weapons we have, from a skilled position standpoint, is going to make defensive coordinators stay up late at night.