(Photo: ASU Athletics)
Every Monday Todd Graham holds a press conference to discuss the previous week and Arizona State’s upcoming opponent. We’ll try to decipher what exactly the second-year Sun Devil’s head coach is saying during his often long-winded, sometimes funny, and always entertaining and informative media sessions.
Note: All quotes were transcribed by Sun Devil Athletics.
Graham: You’ve got to approach every game like it was the conference championship game…the key for us is consistency…and I do feel like every single week we get better…that’s going to be the key for us down the stretch.
Translation: Washington State clearly isn’t very good, but neither are we on the road. In case you’ve missed it, we don’t really have a quality win away from Sun Devil Stadium. Will it be a quality win if we beat the Cougars? No, not really, but we better come out and play like we did against Washington, or we could be in trouble.
Graham: If I had my choice to play a passing team or a running team, I’d rather play a passing team. It’s just easier to fix.
Translation: I’d rather play Wazzu than Washington. I’d rather play Oregon State than Oregon. And I’d rather play the bad teams than the good ones. Also, that Halliday kid the Cougars have under center is really good at finding open opponents and throwing them the ball.
Graham: We’ve lost to two really good teams. I mean we lost to Stanford. I think we did a really poor job of preparing them then…but we got beat by a really good team…in Dallas, that was one we should’ve won…as far as the road and all that, that’s just the way it is. I think every team plays better at home…you don’t win on the road because you aren’t focused and you don’t prepare well…no excuses…you gotta go win.
Translation: The coaching staff has done a bad job of preparing the team to win on the road. Is that harsh? Probably, but it’s also true. This team is talented enough to win the Pac-12 South and hang with Stanford and Oregon, but we are still too inconsistent, and that’s on coaching.
Graham: I think we travel too many people, if you want me to be honest, people who aren’t playing…let’s just take 35 players who are going to play…what it is is distractions.
Translation: Ummmmmmmmm…..on second thought…let’s just forget about that answer.
Graham: From the time I came here, I told you if we take care of the ball and don’t have negative plays, we’re going to score a lot of points. And I really feel confident about that. If you look at the games we haven’t, there’s one common denominator: we don’t run the football.
Translation: Dear offensive line: please continue getting outta your stance and into the chest of the defenders like you have during the last two games, and less like you did against Notre Dame or Stanford. If you do, we can run the ball…if we run the ball, TK and the receivers will have a field day…and if that happens, we beat teams by 30. Simple, right?