Oct. 23, 1999
BERKELEY - Here are postgame comments from both head coaches and selected players after the Oct. 23 Cal-Washington football game.
Cal head coach Tom Holmoe -
General comments on the game:
" A real yawner, wasn't it? It was a big, difficult game for us to not finish up. We had talked earlier in the week about how a game like this is going to come down to the wire. We talked about an analogy of a fight, a fifteen rounder, and we went fourteen rounds and got knocked out at the end of the fifteenth round.
"We did some things offensively to put the ball in the end zone and score. The defense came through with some big plays, but it just wasn't it enough. We gave up some big plays on defense, and we weren't able move the chains in the fourth quarter when we needed to. We had a 3rd and 3 when Joe went down and ended up with a 4th and 1. They got the ball back, and for all intense and purposes, you would think we would be able to hold them, and I can't even tell you what happened now. A guy comes out wide open and they get the ball in the red zone. It is a frustrating thing. It is real difficult right now, especially when I don't have the answers of what happened out there out on the field in the later stages of the game. As a team we made some progress a little bit on offense. Hopefully Joey (Igber) will be all right. He's just helping us out a ton, and helping us out on offense.
"It is going to be hard coming back against USC right away on these guys. They are pretty resilient. They'll be upset and come out fighting. There is no way these kids will give up, we've just got to find a way to execute to better perfection."
On the secondary:
" We were in man coverage quite a bit. We were close. It is unbelievable how close this game is. Deltha (O'Neal) has the ball go off his hands for the victory - that is how close these games are. He catches it, we run the clock out."
On making mistakes:
"There are a lot of things that are amazing with us that keep us baffled and slow us down. Everyone is aware of it. We know it stalls our progress. We won't continue to get better until we eliminate some of those things. We had a couple of young guys do some things out there that were baffling - totally baffling."
Cal quarterback Kyle Boller
"I had a couple misses early, but then I was able to get on a little roll. I'm just trying to get better every game."
"We fought hard today. I was impressed with the way we kept on fighting. We just came up a little short today. We have 110 percent confidence in our defense...they're awesome."
(What happened on the fumble when the Bears were near the endzone?) "I got stepped on by a lineman and I couldn't boot. I kind of fell over and the ball hit him (Joshua White) on the hip. My left foot was stepped on."
(On Joe Igber) "He's unbelievable and a heck of a kid. Sometimes his jukes make me laugh, but he is doing great and he is making guys miss. We need guys like that to make us successful. We have so much to look forward to. It was a tough loss...just one of those things. It is going to be so much fun in the next couple of years."
Cal outside linebacker Scott Fujita
"We were inconsistent, and when you're inconsistent you are not going to win ballgames. That about sums it up. After the UCLA game, I felt we were going to come out and dominate again. Now we are going to have to re-evaluate. We had mental breakdowns between everybody. On the last big play for them (Washington), there was a miscommunication on the coverage. Their slotback ran a wheel route and got free."
"It's really frustrating because our offense was making a lot of plays and we weren't able to capitalize. Somehow our focus snapped on us, but we'll bounce back. We have a lot of pride. You can't play just three quarters and expect to win."
Cal tailback Joe Igber
(Did you think you would carry the ball 35 times?) We only have two backs healthy, so I knew I would have an extra load. I don't play for stats, I play for wins. Wins give you championships and stats don't."
(Do you always look for cutbacks?) "There is always a hole there. You just have to adapt to what the defense gives you. I don't always look for the cutback, I look for the open hole. When the holes opens up, I try to squirt through them."
(How is your right shoulder-A.C. joint sprain) "It hurts really bad. Hopefully next week I'll be ready to go. I'm just going to have to suck it up and produce for the team."
Washington head coach Rick Neuheisel -
General comments on the game:
"I've been involved in a lot of come-from-behind wins. I don't know if it's because it's the most recent or the most vivid, but I'm excited about the way the kids wouldn't give up. At halftime we had a long talk about sticking together. It was gratifying that the kids stuck together. It was one of those rollercoaster rides that's now over. I'm glad we got back to the dock safe."
"Marques (Tuiasosopo) made his share of plays. I know he's angry about the interceptions that led to points for Cal. But low and behold, we were able to find a way to win. When you have that kind of spirit and that kind of effort, it's gratifying. These are all learning things for him. Fortunately, today it didn't cost us."
"We had our share of big plays in the game. We had enough to win. It was a gut-check effort for the guys on defense. I was very pleased our guys held their composure."
On Cal's defensive effort:
"I don't think Cal has a zone defense. They really stuff you up front. (Jacob) Waasdorp, (Andre) Carter, Mawuko (Tugbenyoh). And (Sekou) Sanyika - he's a beast. They're really a force up front. You have to pick your spots."
On Cal RB Joe Igber:
"He's a talented kid. One hundred eighty-two yards - that's certainly more than we expected to give. My hat's off to him."
On Washington's winning streak over Cal:
"I don't think that was the least bit on anybody's mind in the fourth quarter today. It's one of those things that just happens in sports. We're just happy to be in the conference race. The streak doesn't mean anything to me."
Washington quarterback Marques Tuiasosopo
On Sekou Sanyika's first interception:
"I was very disappointed in the first half. Sanyika came up on the line and I thought he was coming, but he didn't. He was just reading me and stepped in front. It hurt. I still have a lot to learn and a lot to work on. Games like this are a test of character. I really have to concentrate on making the smart read."
On the Washington receiving corps:
"I have all the confidence in our receivers. They are a hard working group. I think they stepped up their game and made some outstanding catches."
On the California defense:
"That is a great defense. They are all what they are, No. 1 in the Pac-10. They have a great front seven. Man, those guys come hard, Sekou Sanyika comes hard, and that's why I'm so proud of our offense. That defense is a great group and they're going to do great things this year."
Washington guard Dominic Daste
On playing against the California defense:
"Jacob Waasdorp is a great player. They are a very physical team and played their butts off. Our big thing was just to be physical and finish every single block that was made."
Washington fullback Maurice Shaw
On coming home to play in Northern California:
"Cal came out there and played a really good game. I knew I was coming back home and had a lot of people watching me, and I just wanted to have a good game."
On the California defense:
"They have a great defense. It was tough for us to get a running game going. We were fortunate to get some plays going in the second half."
Washington flanker Gerald Harris
On the California defensive unit:
"They have an NFL defensive line and NFL DB's. We just wanted to get the ball off quickly and hope the d-line got tired. Their whole defense is easily one of the best defenses in the country, and I'm not just saying that to try to elevate our offense. They are just great."
On the winning Washington drive:
"It had been building up since the first quarter and it all came together in those last minutes."