UI player quotes from 2007 Media Day

Aug. 6, 2007

Iowa Football Media Day Student-Athlete Quotes

Damian Sims – Senior, Running Back
(On teaming with Albert Young)
“Albert is one of my best friends on the team. We are aware of our situation and we like the fact that people consider us a one-two punch, but this is our team. The older guys have to step up and play their best ball this year and lead the younger guys. We are going to need some of the younger guys to step up and that’s our situation.”

(On impressions of new quarterback Jake Christensen)
“Jake is a cool kid and the one thing about him is that he’s confident. He knows what he can do and if he sees me not doing something right, he’ll tell me just like he would tell anybody else. I think we’ll be fine with Jake in there.”

(On playing with a sense of urgency after last season)
“We know we didn’t have the best season last year and we had a lot of ups and downs, but that was last season. We know our older guys are going to step up and play their best ball this year. We are not going to dwell on last year. It’s over, it happened and we are looking forward to this season.”

Devan Moylan – Senior, Safety
(On readiness for upcoming season)
“I have some flexibility, but I would say now it’s getting close to 100%. I got a lot of work left to do but we’ve made a lot of progress this summer.”

(On being a leader in the secondary)
“We have a very veteran group and a lot of leaders on defense, so a lot of those guys take the bulk of the responsibilities. For me, I’m just trying to get back on pace with everyone else since I lost a lot of time but I’m also trying to help the younger guys come along.”

Charles Godfrey – Senior, Cornerback
(On getting back out on the practice field)
“This morning went well. We came out here, got our feet wet a little bit and started to get back into the groove. Everybody was excited and everything went smooth but it’s a process. Today was step one.”

(On preparing for season)
“I’m ready to get this season going, but it’s a process. We’ve got to take our time and go back to the basics to get things rolling again but there is a little sense of urgency. I want to take this Iowa team back to where we are supposed to be right now so we’ll have to see where we stand when the season starts.”

(On helping freshmen)
“I told them to talk to me if they need anything. If they do something wrong in practice, I can guide them on how to fix it. As a leader, it’s my job to go talk to these guys and get them up to speed. The freshmen are doing well, better than most that come onto a team for the first time, but they are a real good group of guys.”

Kenny Iwebema – Senior, Defensive Line
(On the 2007 season)
“We are excited about this year. We are excited about every year. You have to take everyone as a new one.
“We did a lot of good things last year. Obviously we did a lot of bad things, but just take it in stride and do what we have to do to get better every day.”

(On our defense)
“We have a lot of experience up front. This defense is a lot more experienced in a lot of ways than defenses in the past. I mean we have three-year starters up front, three-year starters at corner. We are excited; it’s a good thing for us.”

(On the 2006 injury)
“Obviously you always want to be out there, any time you’re not on the field you want to be out there. It was really tough to watch. I did whatever I could to get back and now we are just concentrating on this year.”

(On new line coach)
“He’s cool. It’s a different experience; he has a different view of the position. He’s different both mentality in the meeting rooms and on the field. It’s good for us.”

Mike Klinkenborg – Senior, Linebacker
(Individual accolades)
“I mean you hear it here and there, but you try not to hear it. That’s all preseason stuff and that’s common… the end of the season means a lot more.”

(Personal adversity)
“I think so, you still don’t forget about things. I mean I will never forget what happened last year. But, being out here with these guys makes things a lot better for me.”

(Small high school)
“A lot of guys come from small high schools. When you are growing up, it feels like a dream come true but it doesn’t feel real until you actually get here, and you’re kind of wide eyed for a little while. It’s still hard to believe; you wake up some days still not believe you are here.”

Bryan Mattison – Senior, Defensive End
(The Northern Illinois game)
“There are a lot of things to work on. That’s the job of the coaches. We are going to watch film and correct them this camp.”

(On senior year)
“Oh yeah, it’s going quick, but I’m excited.”

Ryan Donahue — Redshirt Freshman, Punter
(Importance of special teams)
“We are all just trying to do whatever we can for the team, and however good we are it’s going to show up in the games. If we show up to play we are going to win, if not, it’s obviously going to show you what it is.”

(Kicking team mates and practices)
“They are all very fun guys to be around. We have a good time, but are serious at the same time. We always get our work done.”

Dominique Douglas, Sophomore, Wide Receiver
(biggest progression/difference)
“The leadership, more excitement in the game, just more. Just trying to push the other guys. If I’m not in the game and somebody else is, you’ll probably see me on the sidelines yelling and screaming”

(receiving corps, experience factor-can’t key on one person)
“Oh yeah definitely, we have a couple of packages this year that allow all the receivers to get on the field, at least four, five receivers at the same time. I mean, that can be dangerous, so as long as all the receivers are learning.

(self pressure/freshman year vs. sophomore year)
“I mean, it wasn’t a lot of pressure, because last year I was just playing basically; but this year is more exciting because I’m basically a leader and I’ve become more a leader on the field and off the field. I’m just going to help all the other receivers do what they have to do to be better than I was last year.”

Andy Brodell, Junior, Wide Receiver
(feelings after Alamo Bowl)
“Well, I think it was a beginning of a new start and I think it was the beginning of a new start for the whole team. That whole month, we had kind of a gut check moment there because we were coming off of, arguably, one of the worst end of the seasons that we’ve had here at Iowa, at least under Coach Ferentz. So I think we all felt a sense of urgency that we need to come out here and perform. We all knew we were capable of it and I think, obviously, getting healthy and having the other guys get healthy around us helped us. But definitely the time off and thinking about the way we wanted to end our season was the biggest thing.”

(inexperienced QB/anymore pressure on offense, carry more)
“No, I really don’t because I think Jake is going to fill in just fine for us. Leaving Drew (Tate) out of the mix, it takes away a bit because he had some experience and he won a lot of games for us, but I don’t think there is any added pressure. We all kind of take the whole burden of pressure as a unit and I don’t think that we are going to think about that a whole lot. I think that we just have a lot to prove as an offense, and yes we’ve got some guys that are just mixing into it this year, but I think we’ve got a good nucleus of guys that are going to get the job done this year.”

Adam Shada, Senior, Cornerback
(last year mistakes)
“Yes, I mean you could go right down the list. There were a number of things that we didn’t do well, but we’re obviously trying to look forward to next year and build on what we’ve created from the Alamo Bowl and momentum we’ve started there. We finally started training the way we’re supposed to and the way we’re used to.”

(difficulties breaking in two new DB/transition)
“I’m not necessarily sure. The biggest issue I would say is that Charles (Godfrey) and I have started for a year or more, but the safety in our system is kind of the shock collar so, for those guys to know that they are calling the shots. They have to step up and be vocal leaders on defense and make sure everyone is in the right situation.”

Tony Moeaki, Junior, Tight End
(On how this year is different than the last two years)
“This year is different than other years. We always have the same goal at this point in the year, which is to have a good camp and start the season off right. We don’t really get into the preseason stuff all that much.”

(On quarterback Jake Christensen)
“He is definitely looking good. He is a good competitive leader which is what you want to see in your quarterback.”

(On this team being better than past teams)
“We have a different team. We need to be a little bit more focused and know what is at stake. We are excited for the season to start.”

(On not playing Michigan and Ohio State)
“Every game is going to be tough. That is how we look at it. Every game is going to be a battle.”

(On the tight ends as a group)
“We are always trying to improve. Scott (Chandler) was a great player and we just try and take what we learned from him.”

(On being named to the Mackey Watch List)
“It’s a great honor, but right now it is just on paper.”

Albert Young, Senior, Running Back
(On getting individual attention)
“When your team does well you get attention. We haven’t done that the last two years. There are some guys that aren’t that great that get hype because of their teams. We just need to win and everything else will fall into place.”

(On the new offensive line)
“You have to get used to the tempo. When you are with certain guys for a while you get a feel for what they are going to do. We are not concerned with how old the players are or how much experience they have. We have to work together.”

(On playing in Soldier Field)
“It is going to be nice. It will be a different atmosphere. It will be exciting for the players and the fans can make a nice trip out of it. They will be able to make a weekend out of it. A football field is a football field for us.”

(On if there are any games in particular that he is looking forward to)
“Northern Illinois. That is all I’m thinking about.”

Jake Christensen, Sophomore, Quarterback
(On starting last year against Northern Illinois)
“I think it helped. Obviously the playing experience is going to help. You never want to go into a season with cold feet. It helped a little bit but I still have a lot to learn.”

(On how the approach changes going from the backup to the starter)
“I don’t think it changes at all. You always have to be ready to play because `next man in’ is a big thing around here and Coach preaches it a lot. All of us really try and live by that mentality.”

(On Coach liking his leadership qualities)
“We all try to be leaders. I don’t think there is just one leader.”

(On the players around him)
“I am confident. We are deep. We have eight or nine receivers around us. We have Albert (Young) and Damian (Sims). We are deep at tight end with Tony (Moeaki) and Brandon (Myers). We have weapons everywhere. As long as we use them well it will really be to our advantage.”

(On the team being `his’)
“I don’t think it is one man’s team. If one guy thinks it is his team the chemistry will break down. You are only as tough as your weakest link. It is a cliché but it is true. Everybody means something on this team.”

(On finally being the starter)
“It feels good. When you sign with a college you always want to be a starter. There are a lot of guys this year that are going to be playing a more prominent role. A lot of guys are really looking forward to getting out there.”

(On the 2005 recruiting class)
“We did lose about 9 or 10 guys which hurt but all the guys that are working hard and whoever is out there will get the job done.”

Seth Olsen, Senior, Offensive Lineman
(On Julian Vandevelde)
“He is young but he really works hard. He has a great work ethic and it showed this summer in the weight room and out here on the field.”

(On the cohesiveness of the Offensive Line)
“We have three weeks when we are going to be shuffling guys around. We have been together for six months or so with the exception of the new guys so we already have that cohesiveness. “

(On starting half way through the year last year)
“I was given an opportunity to play and I didn’t want to let go of it. I just found a way to keep myself on the field. I just tried to worry about my performance and the performance of the offensive line. My confidence elevated after each game. “