Coming off two tough defeats, Rice Football players and head coach Mike Bloomgren prepare for their comments prior to their Week 3 game against Texas.
Texas has taken center stage at South Main. Bloomgren, along with wide receiver Brad Rozner and linebacker Blaze Alldredge, met with the media on Tuesday to discuss the upcoming Week 3 matchup.
From Mike Bloomgren
On what the team learned from the Wake Forest game …
“The bottom line is we’re not quite there yet to beat that team. We felt like we had the ability to on the field and certainly at times, it looked like we did. But, we’ve got to keep making progress. We’re just not quite there. But, once again, better day by day. I’m proud of the guys for that and the way they’re working.”
On tangible proof of progress year over year…
“There’s a lot of things, to be honest with you. The fact that we could stand toe-to-toe and the fact that we could move the ball in short-yardage. The fact that when they overloaded the box in the run game and they were running some of their pressures, we were able to attack them through the air. We had a receiver like Bradley Rozner step up and make a few big-time plays.”
On the current state of the quarterback room…
“We played a lot of quarterbacks last year and some of them are still in the program. Evan Marshman is going to be the guy that takes reps with the twos right now. We also, obviously, have JoVoni Johnson who we believe in tremendously. He’s a very talented guy who we’re going to keep growing. I don’t expect to see him in this game this weekend, but, we have some guys that we really trust with some cool tools.”
From Brad Rozner
On the ability of the Texas secondary …
“They’re obviously going to be a little faster than us, that’s kind of why they recruited so highly out of high school but we’re just gonna have to attack them like anybody else. We’re going to bring the fight to them. We’re the underdogs.”
From Blaze Alldredge
On the improvement in the defense this season…
“Giving up quick 14 points [to Wake Forest] but battling back with a stop and getting us back to that 14-14 type game shows a resilience that we didn’t have as a defense last year, in my opinion.”
“Last year I think there were times where we just felt like we couldn’t stop people, no matter what we did. And this year, we just don’t have that feeling at all. When you give up a quick 14 to Wake Forest, it’s easy to go to your sideline and go, dang, we just can’t stop these guys. Whereas instead, it’s an organized huddle where we’re like, okay, we missed these assignments, here’s what we have to sharpen up to get the stops.”
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