Nov. 11, 2003
BERKELEY - Below are selected quotes from head coach Jeff Tedford from his press conference heading into the Cal's game vs. Washington. The Bears host the Huskies on Saturday, Nov. 15 at 12:30 p.m. in Memorial Stadium.
On what a win over Washington mean to Cal
It would mean that we would have an opportunity to go to a bowl game this year. There is nothing more I would do for these players, the alumni and the program. I felt bad for these guys last year that couldn't go. That's what these guys play for every week. They play hurt. They practice hurt. There is nothing more you'd like to see than them rewarded that way.
On defensive back Mike McGrath
He did have surgery, and broke both bones in his leg. He had a rod put in. His prognosis for rehabilitation is three months, so he should be back for spring practice. His ankle is stable, his knee is stable. If it were his ACL, it would take six months. So, if it had to be something of a lower leg, he probably got away with an injury that has the least amount of recovery time.
On how Geoff McArthur has improved this year
I see his work ethic has improved tremendously. Every day, he practices hard. He plays through minor injuries and aches and pains, where maybe before he was a little easy on himself. I just think practicing harder has made him a much better player. Being mentally tougher has improved his game. I'm really pleased with him because he's really come a long way.
On Washington's defense
They have a very good defense. Washington's defense is very stingy, and they are very well coached. They are very quick up front and have quick linebackers. They do a lot on defense. Their secondary guys are good cover guys. You look at the scores of their games. They gave up 28 to Ohio State and 28 to one other team, and after that, it's a lot of 14s, 17s and 13s. The UCLA game was a little misleading because UCLA's defense scored some points in that game.
On Washington WR Reggie Williams
He is a tremendous player with size and speed. That's what's so impressive about him. He's so big and he can really run.
On Cal's kick coverage
We're going to have to do a better job of that. Our kickoff and punt team missed 10 tackles I counted. Those guys (Washington) are real explosive and can make you miss, and they turn into big plays and change field position.
How do you replace McGrath?
We have to find someone who's going to fill in at that spot. He's an All-Pac-10 special teams guy. He's on all of them and a tremendous leader and really sets the tone and tempo for our special teams. He's going to be sorely missed, but someone has to step up now and pick up that slack. This week, we will be utilizing guys in some areas and try to get them comfortable.
On Mark Wilson playing every game of his career
It takes a lot of luck. It's a very physical game. Mark has stayed healthy. You have seen guys that are playing through stingers. I don't know if I've ever seen Mark on the injury report in two years. He had a stomach virus once. That's a lot different than playing through neck stingers or strained knees, or shoulders that come out of place, which a lot of guys do.
How is Tyler Fredrickson progressing?
He's worked hard. I think he appreciates you showing confidence in him that you're going to kick a 53-yarder. Coach (Pete) Alamar said he was kicking 55-yarders easy (in pregame). He's got a very strong leg. He's been punting the ball well, which has a lot to do with your decision about play calling.