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9/5/2011: Paul Rhoads Big 12 teleconference transcript (premium)

Posted on 05. Sep, 2011 by in Iowa Football


By Brendan Stiles

Below is the complete transcript from Iowa State head coach Paul Rhoads’ Big 12 teleconference on Monday, as the Cyclones prepare for their game against the Iowa Hawkeyes on Sept. 10 at Jack Trice Stadium in Ames, Iowa:

On what this week’s game means to the state of Iowa:

“Well, quite a bit. I don’t know quite how to specifically describe it. But you got a state that has no professional sports. It is the game of the year in this state. The entire attention will be directed towards it this week as far as the media build-up and water cooler build-up, and so on and so forth. The bragging rights that go along with it and so forth. It’s also a very fan-friendly type of rivalry. I’ve been involved with a number of rivalries throughout my coaching career, and this is one that the state really enjoys. Outcome win or lose, people have fun with this football game.”

On how hard it is to recover the week following an Iowa/Iowa State game:

“Well, it depends. It depends on how long that hangover is. It depends on certainly win or lose first, then how you lose second, how you win, and then what you got to be prepared for. Every game is so important. It doesn’t matter if it’s a conference game or a non-conference game. Every win counts towards your bowl eligibility. We turn around next week and have a short week as we head to UConn for a six-day week, Friday night game. We’re not going to have any time to worry about it once it’s over with.”

On the confidence he has in quarterback Steele Jantz following Iowa State’s win over UNI last weekend:

“Very much so. I would add to that our offense got off to a rocky start, and he happened to be part of that group. He was also the primary force in leading us to victory, so he wasn’t without miscues of his own, but certainly for protection issues and dropped balls, it did not put him in a situation where he could have looked as good as he has played in training camp. I have to walk away from this game even more confident maybe than I was with him when the season started.”

On whether he had memories of the rivalry growing up near Ames:

“A ton. It was talked about all week in school and people were showing their colors. It was talked about on the high school field as you practiced and got ready for your game. If you didn’t have a ticket to it, somebody was having a gathering at the house and everybody was there watching it on television. So yeah, fond memories of it. And the build-up is just something extra special in this state.”

On how much animosity does exist between Iowa and Iowa State fans:

“I don’t think there’s any grudges moving forward from this game. I would get away from heated and say it’s just intense. Both sides of the line want to win the football game, but certainly there’s not a lot of fights breaking out over this one. People are sharing tailgates together and they’re rooting hard and aggressively for their team, and then everybody moves on. I tell everybody, I get more comments when I’m out in the state or a function or just out publicly where people say, ‘Coach, we root for you every game but one,’ and who’s got a problem with that? You would expect them to be loyal to their team in that game, rooting for them. But the people in this state after that are rooting for the other side to win their games.”

On whether players unexpectedly step up in games such as this:

“Well, yeah. We were getting ready to play West Virginia when I was at Pitt, and Dave Wannstedt made the comment to our football team that this is the game legends are made of. Darelle Revis had a punt return in that game that was just absolutely sensational and it ended up being a finalist for an ESPY award. I think that’s true of games like this. You’re playing the in-state rival. This game will be, just, you won’t be able to find a club of grass to stand on or sit in. It will be filled to the gills, and the pageantry and the excitement. That kind of atmosphere creates special plays within a game, and it very well could happen this Saturday.”


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