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Quotes from Rudy Carpenter's weekly press conference

October 22, 2007

On the schedule of games:
I think more than anything I was just happy that we had eight home games at home and playing at night. I think we like playing at night, at least I do. Obviously we thought we had a chance to be in the situation we are in now, but Oregon State was a team we lost to last year so that was a big win for us. Every game is tough in the Pac-10 and every team is good. We knew we had a good chance against all these teams. I think we've done what we were supposed to do in my opinion and now we just have to continue to do that.

On the keeping up with BCS rankings:
Usually I don't, but I have now. I think now it is a little hard to resist not seeing it especially when the tape comes up and you see ASU at number four or wherever it is. So, yeah, you're going to know, and everyone tells you about it. It's exciting for us too.

On how the team handles the BCS rankings:
I think it is really everything to be honest with you. I think it is a little bit of a validation and excitement. Guys are really starting to realize how much hard work pays off and we are number four in the BCS right now and everyone is feeling good about it. Sometimes it can be a burden because now we are starting to realize that every game we are really playing for the BCS game, Rose Bowl, or the National Championship. Every game is really that game. It is tough too and it is some pressure for some people.

On how the public has said that ASU hasn't played the tough teams yet:
Well, I think we have played some good teams. If you look over the course of the season, Stanford beat USC, Oregon State beat Cal and Washington played a good game with Oregon this weekend. Everyone is kind of beating each other, so they can say whatever they want. Maybe it is tough to argue with them, but we can only play who is on our schedule every week and that's what we've been doing.

On how the game plan has changed without Ryan Torain:
I don't think it's going to change a whole lot. I think Keegan [Herring] and Dimitri [Nance] are both good players and capable just like Ryan is capable. I think they're different types of backs than Ryan is. Ryan is obviously a great back, but Keegan is a change of pace back who can hit a homerun for us if we need that. Dimitri is a good though inside runner and that's what we need anyways. It might help us out a little bit, because I think they're going to be rotating a little bit more than guys were rotating with Ryan. So, I think we're going to have two backs who are probably more fresh.

On the difference in him as quarterback between this year and last year:
That's funny you ask that, because I was driving to school this morning and I was trying to think what our record was this time last year and how I felt and to be honest, I really don't remember. I just feel like the same, we're just winning a little bit more. Everything seems to be the same to me, I mean obviously I think my confidence level and overall excitement is probably a little bit higher, but overall I'm the same quarterback as last year.

On the team's feelings on the BCS rankings:
Yeah, I think we've all thought that, I mean, we have a chance to play in the Rose Bowl, we have a chance to play in the National Championship and we really have a chance. I think the one thing we've all been talking about on our team more than anything is just the fact that we're one of the few teams in the country that really has the ability to control our own destiny, which a lot of teams don't have that. We can control really were we want to go.

On comparing last year's game against Cal to this year's:
It will be a little bit of a motivation for me, I will not lie about that. Obviously for every player there are some games they circle on their schedule every year. For me, I didn't play to well at Cal last year and they beat us pretty good. This is a game I've been looking forward to, a little over a year now, waiting to get a second chance at them. They're a good team who got me last year and got our team last year.

On last year's game against Cal:
It wouldn't say it was the lowest I felt because we were 3-0 at that time; it was our first loss and I didn't play well. I think every quarterback and other players aren't going to play well every time, but it wasn't one of the better days. I felt like that was a game where if I would have played anywhere near where I should play or where I was capable of playing, we would have had a much better chance. I think I had five turnovers in that game, which I think they scored on almost all of them. I think I really put our team in a bind and that's what I felt bad about.