Tracking the Longhorns: Sept. 25
QB COLT McCOY
On if this is a game he has been looking forward to: Last year when we went up there we were on a roll. We had a lot of things good going for us. It was tough to have to sit down and have to sit on the sidelines and watch my team and not be out there fighting with them. It's not revenge, it's not circled or anything, it is just the Big 12 opener and it is at home and we are excited.
On if he has ever had an injury like that before in his career: No, I had never been injured and that was one of the hardest things I went through. That kind of motivated me to put on the weight, to get a little stronger, to be a little bit more durable because it's a long season and it's tough. The more you can withstand, the better your team is going to be.
On the pain of the injury last year: It was an injury that the pain was bad, but there was no way that you could just fight through the pain. It took away all your strength. It took away everything. Holding a football was hard. When something like that happens you just have to sit back and swallow the pill, and it's hard. I fought through that, I'm healthy now, I feel great, and I'm just excited about Kansas State.
On being a leader on the team, but missing the end of last year's game: It's a team sport and I felt like our team fought until the end. We still almost came out with a victory. At the same time, right now we are focused on them and we had a great practice today and we have a good game plan and coaches are going to prepare us and get us ready. It is the first Big 12 game and that is enough motivation for us.
On Kansas State running a 3-4 defense: Last year Rice ran a 3-4. We faced it last year, but we kind of knew they were going to do it in two-a-days and we spent a couple of days doing that and other teams may play that against us. You just have to be able to handle it. The 3-4 teams usually blitz a little bit more. They are going to try to come after us early on, so we need to handle that.
On what he saw on tape against Auburn: They went into Auburn not scared, and they went out there and played hard and really should have won the game. I felt like they should have won. They made a few mistakes at the end that cost them. They have had two more wins after that so they are going to come in here fired up.
On Tony Hills: Tony has been dominating his position since the first game. He played against two strong defensive ends at TCU. UCF had a great defensive end. We have Ian Campbell coming in from Kansas State and the other guy that plays opposite him is good, too. It's going to be a challenge, and he is going to have to step up and play, but I have faith in him for sure.
On practice today: Practice has been good. It's hard for the scouts, they haven't run a 3-4, but they worked on it yesterday, and they were ready and played well today and gave us a good look. If they can continue to do that, then we can continue to execute and focus on our game plan.
On if the team refocuses on conference play: It's the start of a new season. It's the start of Big 12 and you know that when Big 12 teams come into town there is a different attitude. This is our conference we have to come out here and play and play strong. I feel like if we continue to work hard and continue to make progress we will be where we want to be.
On if there is carry over from the Rice game: I think so. I think the Rice game was a definite help for us. It brought back new life for us. We know that we can come out here and play strong and play well and play as a team. The defense gave us short fields in the previous games and we didn't take advantage of them. I felt like during the Rice game we came out and played well as a team. If we can continue to do that, that is what we want to do.
On if he felt like he made any adjustments during the Rice game: I had been trying to figure it out. I had been trying to put us in the perfect play. I had been trying to make every play and I don't have to do that. I have great playmakers around me. I have great teammates and great coaches. I just have to go out there and execute and perform and know that this team is with me and just go out there and play and put us in a good place and we will be fine. That's what I did. I just tried not to do too much. I think that was my deal, I was trying to do too much, but at the same time, I was still giving us a chance to win and playing well, but there are definitely things I can do.
OL CHRIS HALL
On playing all the positions he has: We have such good coaches here like Coach McWhorter, Coach Davis, and Coach Brown and we have such great players like Dallas [Griffin], Tony Hills, and Cedric Dockery, that really playing all the positions isn't that hard. Having great coaches and great players that surround us like that really makes it a whole lot easier than it would be.
On the different stances at each position: Coach McWhorter does one of the best jobs in preparing for a game week as I have ever seen an offensive line coach, technique as well. We've got the drills we go through every day that pertain to certain plays like zone. He does such a good job that he really makes it easy for us.
LB RODDRICK MUCKELROY
On Kansas State: We're just trying to prepare for everything they can come out and do to us. We just want to be ready when Saturday comes.
On if there is momentum coming from the Rice win: The win helped us out a lot. We got back to work last week, and we were just focusing on just finishing. We want to make that carry over to this weekend, so this week we are focusing on finishing again.
CB RYAN PALMER
On the defense coming off of a good game: We just want to go out there and execute every game. I think we try to execute every game starting with the older guys to the younger guys. I think what we do in practice produces on the field, so I think we should be fine.
On Marcus Grffin: He's a great leader. He performs well on the field, in practice and in class. He is just a good model for all of us, including me, Brandon [Foster] and all the younger guys. I think Marcus back there keeps us gelled together.
On if the defense has answered its questions: We just want to go out there and stay together as a team and not worry about what the outside has to say. We just want to stay together as a team and Coach [Duane] Akina always stresses to stay as one. If one person messes up, we all mess up as a team. We just want to go out there and stay together and stay humble and play hard.
On Kansas State's passing game: I feel like Rice, UCF and Arkansas State threw the ball a lot. We just have to go out there and execute in our game plan. They threw a lot last year, and this year we just have to stay on our cues. We practiced hard today, and we just have to take what we have been doing all week and take it to Saturday. If we do that, we should be fine.