Nov. 9, 1999
Listen to the audio version of this press conference.
BERKELEY - Below are comments from Cal head football coach Tom Holmoe from his weekly media luncheon. Cal hosts Oregon Saturday at 12:30 p.m. in the final home game of the 1999 season.
On this Saturday's home game against Oregon:
"This game against Oregon is another huge challenge for our defense, similar to last week. They give you a lot of problems. Where Oregon State can just grind it at you and pick you apart with scheme stuff, I think Oregon is a lot more explosive."
Evaluating the Oregon squad:
"They have a runner in Reuben Droughns, who is one of the better backs in the country, and they have a couple of really good receivers on the outside and two quarterbacks that seem to be getting them the ball. I think on defense, their linebackers are really good. The heart of their defense is their linebacking core. They are quick up front and show a different scheme than I think you'd see in most teams. I think that one of the things you'll see in this Oregon team is that they execute very well in all areas of the game. They have a lot to play for. They have a great record rolling with two more games left, and I'm sure they are thinking that if they get two more wins, they have a chance to play in a pretty big time bowl. It looks like Washington may have the inside track on the Rose Bowl, but Oregon still has a shot and they will play like they do."
On last week's game at Oregon State:
"Looking back on last week, the defensive team did a great job. Looking at the film and watching them play and seeing the pressure that they put on that Oregon State team up there, and doing it from start to finish, was pretty cool. It was really nice to see younger players and inexperienced players that hadn't played that large of a role come in and play the game that they did. It was very impressive how they played with intensity the whole way. Offensively, I think we played hard, but we couldn't execute with the receivers outside and it's obvious that we need a lot of work there. We'll go to the drawing board this week in practice and try to get some things done with our outside game that will help us move the ball and score."
On Cal's seniors playing in their final home game:
"We still have a bowl opportunity. We have seniors who are playing in their last game in Memorial Stadium this week. Our seniors have given us an awful lot in the last couple of years. We have some special kids that will always be remembered here. There are a good number of guys who are playing in their last game at home, and I think it is important for our team, especially some of our young guys, to realize that we are not through. That this is for the seniors, that we are going to finish strong for them, and that they deserve it. They are a great group of guys and we owe it to them to do everything that we can in our preparation to get these guys into a bowl game."
On how Sekou Sanyika will be remembered at Cal:
"I think he goes down as one of Cal's big playmakers. He came in here and has been a three-year starter. I think the story I would tell would be of how when he came in here he wasn't quite sure, in my eyes, as to what kind of player he was going to be. I think Lyle Setencich defined a role for him and taught him the really specific details of the defense. He really committed himself at that point to becoming a cerebral player and he realized that the things that he could learn off the field were going to help him on the field. I think he also made a commitment physically. He wasn't very strong and he wasn't very big when got here. He was a tall, athletic kid who liked to compete. He really made a commitment in the weight room and got considerably bigger and stronger between his sophomore and junior years and this year he's just refined his game. He's made constant progress. Sekou is a great example of a guy that wasn't highly recruited but came in and ended up being an All-American."