Sept. 23, 2009
BERKELEY - California Heisman Trophy candidate junior TB Jahvid Best addressed the media Wednesday following a Cal football practice at Memorial Stadium. Following are selected comments of what he had to say.
On how much he played against Oregon last year
"I think I played about three quarters worth."
On what he remembers about the 2008 game against Oregon at Memorial Stadium
"I remember that it was raining. And it was a physical game. They had a good defense, and we're expecting the same thing this year."
On the 2007 game at Oregon
"I don't think I had a handoff that game. I played special teams mostly, recovered the fumble. The biggest thing I remember about that game is the crowd. Crowd noise is crazy in there. Honestly any other away game I don't really even hear the crowd. Oregon's the only place where it just really got on my nerves.
On whether he has noticed more Heisman hype this week
"Well I noticed I was on ESPN a little more. But besides that I don't really pay attention to it so I don't know if I went up or down or anything like that."
On Oregon's defense
"They've changed their defense around a little bit. They've got pretty much almost the same personnel coming back so I'm assuming it's going to be the exact same type of game."
More on Oregon's defense
"Physical, and how well-coached they were. They executed their assignments perfectly."
On how much of a workload he is comfortable with
"I'm comfortable with whatever. If they need 30, 40, I'll take them."
On whether he ever needs to come out of the game
"I think the only time I really need to come out is just when I'm tired. And Shane's [Vereen] right there waiting. That's the only biggest thing. But as far as the workload, I'm ready for anything."
On whether he got tired against Minnesota
"I think the last drive I got tired. But that was pretty much it."
On the passing game stepping up at the end of the Minnesota game
"That's really encouraging. All we needed was that one play. We were kind of dry for a minute, and then J-Ross [Jeremy Ross] stepped up to make a big play. That kind of got the team back into it and got the ball rolling again."
On WR Jeremy Ross
"I feel like he could be one of the best receivers that we have here. He's just got to get over that hump."
On Pac-10 play
"Everybody's a little more excited, but I treat every game the same. Just regular."
On what makes Oregon's crowd different
"I think it's a combination of being super-loud and how close they are. From my memory it feels like it was like 10 feet between the sideline and the crowd. No crowd usually gets to me. Oregon's the only one that stands out in my mind that got to me."
On playing in the fourth quarter this season
"I think our teams the past couple years, we kind of panicked when games got close down to the end. But this year we're more confident and we actually believe we're going to win when the games are close. So there's no panic, and that's the biggest factor."
On whether the Minnesota game helped him prepare for Oregon
"I definitely think it prepared us for this weekend. But I think no matter what you go through, Oregon's going to be a little different."