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Keith Gilbertson Press Conference Quotes
Release: 10/27/2003
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Oct. 27, 2003

On the health of Charles Frederick: "I really don't know what Charles' situation is totally. He won't go today. They will look at it again tomorrow. It is more up in the clavicle area, although he did injure his shoulder somewhat on that hit. We are going to wait a day until we make a final determination. He says he feels much better than he did on Saturday."

On how much the injury to Frederick impacted Reggie Williams not getting a catch in the second half: "Well I think it probably factored in some. When he is not out there Reggie can get a lot of attention, but at the same time I think you have to give a lot of credit to SC's pass rush."

On the idea that Oregon is vulnerable to secondary receivers having big days and how Washington will attack that with Frederick out: "I am not sure what you are referring to. It certainly didn't look like that in the Stanford game. I think we all have balance in our passing game, we have always strived for that. We don't want to be too one-dimensional in anything we do throwing the football. We are certainly going to try not to be. We are going to have lots of people involved. We are going to have balance across the board in our passing game, although we do have two guys that are extra special and when you have them on the field then you have to contend with both of them."

On if there is a chance Frederick will play on Saturday: "Yes. There is a chance he will play on Saturday, but there is nothing to say for sure he will and I am not going to say he won't. It sounds better than it did Saturday. A week ago they told me that Rich Alexis had a fractured leg and although he did not play now he is full speed and ready to go. It does sound like he may have a chance to play."

On changes to the special teams: "Well we also lost Scott Ballew, with a fractured toe, turf toe type of injury, so he will not be available. It is conceivable you could still see Reggie returning punts. I would like to see Shelton (Sampson), Isaiah (Stanback) and those guys back there returning kickoffs. We may put Derrick Johnson back there. But, you could see Reggie returning those."

On if having those players back there makes Gilbertson nervous: "What makes me more nervous is dropping the punt. Reggie is guy that wants to do everything. He wants to be in on everything. He wants to be in on punt return. Put him on the line and let him go block a punt. He likes playing and he is unselfish about playing, so good for him."

On the Huskies' celebration on Oregon's field last season: "I did not see what was going on. I came back from the press box and it is kind of a long walk from the press box. I really didn't know much about it until the next day. I really don't have anything to add to it. I don't know that anything I can say is going to change it."

On if it would be anything he would allow on his team: "You guys know how I am, but I certainly can't control how Mike or anybody talks to his team about it. It wasn't in my lane last year in any fashion. I really don't think that there is anything I can add to it or diffuse it. I certainly can't go back and change it."

On how much different recruiting is now as opposed to when he started, and how Oregon has advanced: "Oregon has always been a good place for guys to go to school. They have always been a factor in recruiting. The landscape of recruiting has totally changed, since the '70s, '80s and even the '90s. Seldom did anyone ever make an early commitment. This new phenomenon of juniors jumping in is really new. You are almost stuck because if you are not out there offering kids early and often, there is a chance you will be left behind. If you look at people's recruiting lists by Christmas time, everybody is just about done. I know in the Midwest it has been going on for a long time, in the East and in the South kids commit early. But out here it's new for us because up through most of the '90s you put your class together in December and January. Kids committed and signed, and you only had a couple of kids committed by Christmas. Now if you don't have 10, 12, 14 players by Christmas you are probably having a bad year. The other thing is that you have a bulk of your kids in to visit late season, in December. Recruiting has really changed."

On who benefits from this type of recruiting: "I don't know. You would have to ask 10 coaches. My thing is, that's just the way it is. You have really got to evaluate juniors. You have got to be really exact about your evaluations because you are offering kids earlier than you ever did. Before, seldom ever did we offer someone before their senior season and now you are probably out there offering half to three-quarters of your scholarships before their senior season starts. That is why your evaluation and predictions of juniors has to be right-on. The other thing is you don't have a lot of scholarships. You don't have 105-110 guys, you have 85 and you also have some kids that you redshirt - quarterbacks, kickers and receivers. You are not going to have a lot of players so you can't miss very many times. If you do, or if people get injured or transfer, you are really going to find yourself in a bind."

On how to prepare for the Ducks and their two-quarterback situation: "I think you defend Mike's system. I think you defend his schemes. His systems are interchangeable. I think they are capable of doing the same things. Both are talented guys and they have such a prolific history offensively since Mike has been at Oregon. You really defend that system as best you can."

On if the rivalry between Oregon and Washington is different than the rivalry between Washington State and Washington: "I don't know. It is intense. I think Washington State is a pretty good one too. I would say it is a lot like it, in terms that it is a real intense rivalry. Everybody is really excited about playing and there will be a lot of people here Saturday night."

On how good Kenny James was against USC's defensive line: "I thought Kenny and Shelton both did some nice things with the football. I thought Kenny James showed he is a guy that can run inside and make people miss, break tackles. I thought those kids played very well. It was really their first chance at prime time and I thought both kids did a nice job. If Rich is not full speed I have no hesitations about playing those other two guys."

On if Rich Alexis will start: "Yes. I believe so."

On Gilbertson's thoughts on game two with the reshuffled defensive line: "I didn't think our defensive front had a particularly good day. I think they can play better and be more productive than they were."

On if Washington, in the early '90s, was going after the big-name players or the project players: "I think the class with Hilary Butler, Andy Mason and Steve Springstead was a pretty highly recruited class in the Northwest. I think the next class with Napoleon (Kaufman), Damon Huard and Mark Bruener, were more highlighted players. That was after we had been to the Rose Bowl so we were doing very well. I think probably in the beginning, and I will go back to when coach James started, when I was a graduate assistant, that the evaluation and the projection was very well looked at. USC was on a roll a lot like they are on now. John Robinson and John McKay had that thing pretty stoked up. Coach asked tough questions about character, toughness, competitiveness and leadership and those things we looked at very hard. I don't know that those guys were highly, highly recruited, but I think the process paid off because you got a lot of competitive people that liked to play and played hard. The process has speeded up because you are offering kids as juniors, more than we ever did before. Those kinds of things probably don't get asked as much as you would like. I would still say that for us when we go anywhere, we evaluate and project and ask tough questions and find those kinds of guys, whether he is a highly recruited, prime-time type of recruit, or if we are the only school recruiting him."

On how to prepare for a speedy wide receiver like Samie Parker: "Samie is way faster. He is the sprint champion in our league. He is the 100-meter champ and he's got great speed. He's not small. He's 5-foot-11, 180 pounds, so he is a well-built, nice size athlete. But, he is very fast. Their system gives him a chance to use his speed and get really deep on people. You have got to be on the run with him, you have to disrupt him somehow. He has great vertical speed. If he gets going on you, he is tough to catch."

On the defensive back situation: "There is no change from Saturday. Roc (Alexander) and Chris Massey are still out."

On the tackling and the play of Cody Pickett: "I am not going to take anything away from the USC kid's talent, but I thought our people's tackling was dreadful. I think we tackled very poor. We got in poor position instead of wrapping up and doing the fundamental things you have to do. I was very, very disappointed in a lot of our tackling. I thought Cody played fine. I would like to have the throwaway back. I think he hit people and moved the ball. I felt really good about the fact that we went back and made a drive in the fourth quarter. At the same time you are always disappointed when you get a takeaway and you don't do something with it. Although on the play they said was a fumble I thought was a very poor call. He was clearly trying to throw the ball. If that ball batted out of his hands doesn't take us out of field goal range maybe we get some points."

On if coach Bellotti's schemes have any similarities to anyone they have played this year: "I think you see a lot of Arizona State and Cal in this team because all of those guys have an Oregon background. They have copied a lot or they have introduced into their offense some of USC's bunch, shifting. Their offensive coordinator has always shifted and moved people around. I think you see a little bit of that, I think you see the traditional Oregon things. They have strong protections, they don't give up many sacks. Deep routes, deep crossing routes, comebacks and I think you'll see some of the bunch and shifting that you saw last week."

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