Oct. 11, 2005
Head Coach Frank Tavani
On conditions from last week vs. Columbia:
When you play in conditions like that, like I told our football team before we went out there, it's all about mind over matter. Both teams were playing in six inches of mud on both ends. You really couldn't appreciate the field condition until you actually walked across it, and it felt like the earth was moving under you. I think both teams handled it well, and I guess we did just a little better and were able to come out with the win. It was hardest on the secondary since you're back there and have to react to what somebody else is doing in open space, but we played smart.
On equipment/field conditions after Columbia game:
We actually thought ahead on what we were going to do with our footwear. I'm old school, so we took all of the newspapers that the janitors had collected and put them on the bus back out to Metzgar, and stuffed the sneakers to soak up the water. We went with the all black jerseys and pants to avoid ruining the white pants. I give credit to our equipment manager, Bryan Valladares, for getting the black pants ready to go on short notice. I didn't call him until 8:00 on Saturday morning but it worked out great. The field, on the other hand, is in rough shape. They had the steamroller out to start working on it so we'll see what it's like on Saturday, but I think the conditions bode well for our team. Harvard played on turf last weekend at Cornell and will be coming in here on a totally different surface. Our practice fields look much like Fisher Field does now, so we'll be practicing on the same sort of field condition all week.
On illegal snap calls vs. Columbia:
They changed the rule so that the ball must go between the center's legs to eliminate the old fumblerooski play. Robert Stroble had a hard time with the one-handed snap going through six inches of mud, since he gets down there so low anyways and Brad Maurer's really sitting on the ground. The officials observer said maybe they should have been a little more lenient with it, but it was the correct call and they had to make it. Then Coach Heffner made the decision to go to the two-handed snap after the third call, which really takes you back in the day, but it worked out okay.
On Homecoming vs. Harvard:
They are the toughest team we have played to date. Based on the condition of our field right now, it will be a game of field position and defense. Turnovers will be key. Their quarterback, Liam O'Hagan, is very talented, but has been generous of giving the opposition the ball. He threw three interceptions each against Lehigh and Cornell, and I'd like to be able to get two or three since they have the toughest back that we'll see all year in Clifton Dawson. He'll be hard to stop and slow down, and we just want to limit how many big ones he breaks on us since every touch, he's able to take it to the house.
On status of senior wide receiver Archie Fisher:
We're going to keep him out this week and hopefully with the bye week following that, he might be ready to go against Bucknell. It's hard to say, and I know he's frustrated right now. That's a nagging hamstring injury, and something that keeps getting re-injured with more time.
Senior co-captain David Nelson on Columbia game:
I loved playing on Saturday. It takes you back to just the raw grit of football. I was watching the Penn State game after that (against Ohio State), playing in the same weather on their perfect field. You know, we're not Penn State, and I just loved the whole feel of the game.
Senior co-captain Maurice Bennett on Columbia game:
We want to go out and practice on that field and water it down some more for this weekend. I think we could have the best defense in the country if we got to play in those conditions every week.