Here is all that Huskies coach Chris Petersen said about Washington’s 44-18 victory over Arizona State, and next weekend’s Apple Cup game against Washington State for the Pac-12 North championship.
(Opening Statement) “I’m proud of these guys and I’m happy to send our seniors out with a win. I think that’s always extremely important. These guys have played so well all season as a group. Arizona State is kind of a curveball team, in terms of making things hard on you. They certainly did in the first half, they sort of took us out of our rhythm, but I thought our defense played exceptionally well for most of the game, certainly in the first half. I think that’s how they are, they tend to get to you or knock you back, and you have to be able to strike and hit some good plays.”
(On the Arizona State defense getting the Huskies out of sync) You know they’re going to come with a bunch of pressure. They just have so many blitz patterns, you never know which one they’re going to come with. We were really poor on third down early on, I think we were one for six, so we had nothing going there to get in any sort of rhythm. Then we got a little bit better after that, but still overall on third down we weren’t good.
(On ASU mixing up pressure) “They do a good job of keeping you off balance, so we’re expecting all this pressure. Sometimes you even have plays that are designed for pressure. They were doing a good job, they played softer in coverage while bringing pressure, and it’s a unique style to grind out and slow John Ross and those guys down a bit.”
(On Kevin King interception) “It was huge. In that first half our offense wasn’t doing much and put our defense in bad situations. That was kind of the saving grace with how good those guys were playing, at a high level. We just try and figure out if we can get something going and hopefully throw a big strike. That’s that style of team, I was concerned going in because they have good skill and they can hurt you on defense with their blitzes and they can strike quickly on offense.”
(Six sacks today, what was different?) “Well, brought maybe a little more pressure. I think the guys did a great job of pushing the pocket, condensing it. Combination of those two things probably allowed us to get more pressure than we’ve had in the past.
(On looking forward to Apple Cup) “I think it’s a big game, everybody knows it’s a big game regardless of what the records are, and we got two really good teams with good records and a lot to play for. I know everybody really plays hard in that game anyways. Now it’s like everybody had hoped it would be.”
(On important games being played in November with division title implications in both the North and South) “I think that’s how the conference would like it. I would like it if it was done long before and we felt like it was over. But Washington State’s done a great job. They’ve just continued to get better every week and playing at a high level and really good quarterback. They’ve just improved across the board, from last year to this season, so we’ll have our hands full for sure, and it’ll be a heck of a game.”
(On using tempo to combat Arizona State’s pressure) “They like to see what you’re in, and they’ll get some blitzes going depending on your formations and what they think is happening. Second half, we went out with some more tempo and that kind of helped us, we got down the field. I think we ended up kicking field goals still but we did get down there, and I do think that helps us. I think he’s pretty good when we have some tempo. We practice it all the time, so we have it. We just haven’t been a big tempo team.”
(Is Jake more vocal this year?) “I think the good thing about Jake is, he seems the same in terms of those type of things. His demeanor is the same. He was pretty vocal last year. Semi-vocal. He’s not a yeller or screamer or rah-rah guy, just says what needs to be said, and that’s how we’ve gone about our business this year as well.”
(Feel the need to say anything to Jake after the interceptions?) “Jake doesn’t need me to say anything. He kind of knows how it is. Sometimes I can’t control myself so I still say it anyway.”
(But did you say anything to him then?) “I don’t know. I usually talk to him all the time. He probably just tunes me out.”
(Any long-term concerns with Jojo McIntosh’s injury?) “No, I don’t think so. We think he’s going to be ready, we hope.”
(Anything wrong with Shane Brostek?) “No, no. I think Coach Strausser just wanted to mix it up and give some other guys a chance as well.”
(On Zeke Turner and DJ Beavers) “Zeke’s a physical player. That he is. He is a physical run player, for sure. And I think DJ did a really nice job as well in there. both those guys stepped up, and that’s how it should be this late in the season. If we’re doing things right, which I think our coaches are, in terms of they get a lot of practice reps, a lot. And they’re all quality reps. They’ve all played in games, meaningful reps, so you get deep into the season, there has to be guys able to pick up the flag and carry it and produce and play at a high level. I think both those guys did.”
(On having momentum and finishing the season on an upswing) “I think it’s huge. And you kind of think about that because these guys have played good football for the entire season and so it would be hard if you’re not finishing on an upswing. But I will say this – all the good football is played in November. Really just kind of how it’s gone down, we’ve played some really good teams. We’re going to play a really good team on Friday, (then) bowl game and all those things. It’s good football. So they’ve worked so hard but you’ve got to play your best this time of year. So that’s what you hope for as a coach, that you’re on an upswing.”
(Keishawn Bierria’s kick return -- that just instincts?) “That was instincts, but I will tell you this – we work on it every single week. We give those guys on the hands team a bunch of work. We throw ball at them, roll balls, and they’re probably like, ‘we’re sick of this.’ We haven’t had any onside kicks, I don’t think all season, or way back when. So now it’s when it matters, and it was awesome to see him capitalize.”