Oct. 13, 2004
One big reason Kenny James was able to gain a career-high 189 yards last Saturday against San Jose State was the Huskies' offensive line. Helping to lead the blocking brigade was Sophomore guard, Stanley Daniels. At 6-foot-4, 305 pounds, Daniels has size and he knows how to use it. GoHuskies.com reporter Jesse Hulsing got a chance to sit down and talk with the San Deigo, Calif. native to discuss the team, food, and Daniels' offensive days.
GoHuskies.com: How do you feel about the way the team played against San Jose State?
Stanley Daniels: "I think we played well, but we definitely lost our focus after that first drive. We came out in the second half a lot more focused on the task at hand and we started playing as physical as we did in the first drive. The second half was where we started to play how we normally play."
GH: How good did it feel to open up some holes for Kenny James like you did?
Daniels: "It felt really good to get back to being able to run the ball well. We've seen glimpses of it throughout the season, but obviously we did a lot better job on Saturday."
GH: Do you think the success is because the offensive line is starting to gel a little bit more?
Daniels: "Yeah, I think we are starting to put it all together, we are starting to fight. That's what you need to do to be successful, go out on the field and fight for the win."
GH: How did it feel to get a win in front of the fans like you did?
Daniels: "It was great to get the win, and it was even better because we got it at home. We were struggling for a while and its nice to get that monkey off of our back. Hopefully this win will be the beginning of a good rest of the season. Coach Gilbertson said we need to have an avalanche effect, to start the avalanche we just need a little spark, something that gets the ball rolling down the side of the mountain. Maybe this win will get the ball rolling."
GH: It seems like the team plays well for a while then it gives up a huge play and everything falls apart. How do you feel about that?
Daniels: "Yeah, we need to eliminate that. It might be because we are young, but we need to stop doing it. In the past it has really hurt us, we shouldn't be blowing leads like we did against UCLA. What it comes down to is both the defense and the offense not doing our jobs. We can't let two or three plays beat us."
GH: Does it get frustrating when the receivers drop balls?
Daniels: "It's probably just as frustrating when the quarterback has someone open and he gets hit from the back. It's frustrating whenever the offense doesn't do what it is supposed to do, but that is football, and nothing works all the time. The good teams are the ones that can recover from mistakes and come back the next possession, perform, and fight back. Coach Dickey always tells us bad stuff is going to happen out there, but the measure of a good team is how you respond. We have to get to that point where we respond, where we fight back."
GH: Do you think losing those first four games may end up making you play better?
Daniels: "I think it can, it's possible that it could be a good thing for us. We do not like how it feels to lose. Coach Gilbertson said to us 'When you get tired of losing, you have to do something about it.' I think we are at that point, we're tired of losing."
GH: Is the team generally feeling good right now?
Daniels: "We are feeling good about the win, but we definitely know that we have a long season ahead of us that we need to prepare for. We know we still have a lot of things we need to accomplish."
GH: What are your views on Oregon State?
Daniels: "They have a really good defensive line, they played LSU really tough, I saw that game. We are going to watch film and study them up today. Then we'll prepare for them and get ready."
GH: What do you like to chow down on to get ready for a game?
Daniels: "(Laughing) Everything, I eat everything. But if I had to pick a food I would choose pasta, pasta with chicken."
GH: How are classes going for you?
Daniels: "Classes are going pretty good, I'm trying to get into the business school and that is pretty tough. If I don't get in, I guess I'll have to be an Economics major (laughs), a non-competitive major. I'll still be business savvy though."
GH: So you plan on going into the business world?
Daniels: "Yeah, that's what I want to do if this little game of mine doesn't work out."
GH: Do you plan on trying to play in the NFL?
Daniels: "Oh yeah, I'd love to. Everyone wants to go to the NFL. My cousin actually played fifteen years for the Steelers. One of my uncles also played, so I'd like to continue the family tradition."
GH: When did you start playing football?
Daniels: "My freshman year of high school. I was too big to play Pop Warner (laughs), they told me if I wanted to play Pop Warner I would have to play with the older kids. My mom wouldn't allow it."
GH: Didn't you play defensive tackle in high school?
Daniels: "Yeah, in high school I played defensive tackle and tight end."
GH: So you have some pretty good hands then?
Daniels: "You might say I have some hands, just a little bit. Coach won't put me on the hands team though (laughs). "
GH: You think they might pull you off the line for a little trick play?
Daniels: "That is for Khalif (Barnes), Khalif is really athletic."
GH: You are a pretty funny guy, any other clowns on the team?
Daniels: "We have a lot of clowns. We all kind of joke around with each other and give each other a hard time."