Spring Game

Eugene, Ore.

April 30, 2011

 

Head Coach Chip Kelly

 

On what he saw and learned today:

 

“I thought Troy Hill showed a little flash on his return.  We’re really trying to find who can go with Kenjon and Cliff.”

 

“I thought the Black (Green) team moved the ball well.   We have a lot of work before we get back here on August 8th and that’s on our players now.”

 

“The key to being successful is not only knowing why you’re doing it but what you’re doing.”

 

On the crowd and atmosphere:

 

“That was unbelievable.  Number one to honor our troops and say thank you; we learned a stark lesson yesterday.”

 

On Colt Lyerla:

 

“I thought Colt caught the ball well, especially in traffic.  Four weeks ago he was in high school.  He’s got a skill set that is very unique.  Sometimes when you go from high school to college it’s like learning a new language or being dropped off in a foreign country.  I thought he grew in 15 practices.  He’ll be a savvy veteran for the freshman coming into the fall.”

 

On leadership and Darron Thomas:

 

“There’s a lot of responsibility on their shoulders because of the group we had had last year.”

 

“When you’re out on the field you always look to the quarterback and you know that when we throw him into a game and he plays with so much poise.  He doesn’t get rattled.”

 

On the center position:

 

“It’s a key position for us, for us to do what want to do.  They (Karrington & Grassu) both showed us a lot, but have a lot of work to do.”

 

On the offensive line:

 

“The key to running the ball is up front and you can’t manufacture experience.  When our offensive line starts gelling, we play well.  Hopefully they get a lot of experience over the summer because we don’t have a tune up to start I’ll tell you that much.”

 

On nationally expectations:

 

“It truly doesn’t matter where we’re ranked and I don’t want our guys looking at that.  You’ve got to have a mind to be successful.”

 

On the team’s mentality before this game:

 

“We have been dying to get back out on the field and play a game like this, we have all been putting in hard work and it was good to show the fans a little preview of what this fall is going to be like.”

 

On Kiko Alonso:

 

“He missed a lot of football, not only with the suspension but the injury kept him from practicing.  He’s a guy who has shown improvement.  He made some plays today.  It’s a process but I’m confident in him.”

 

On the receiver core this spring:

 

“It was tough because of injuries.  Receiver was a big question mark going into spring.  You know what you have in Josh Huff.  The only thing that makes you feel good is we have four new guys that we can throw in there, because to be successful we’ve got to be able to throw the football.”

 

On Ayele Forde:

 

“If we had to play a game today he’d be our number three.  Our third running back is a huge question mark.  Ayele, I think, really surprised some people this spring as a walk on from California.  You know what you’re getting with him.”

 

 

#21 LaMichael James, RB

 

On the environment:

 

“It was good for us, and the community. We’re all a unit and when something tragic like that happens [passing of Officer Kilcullen] we all have to stick together.”

 

On the game:

 

“It went well today on both sides of the ball. The defense has been kicking our (the offense’s) butt in spring competitions, but today the offense stepped up. The offense looked completely different today, we’ve made a completely 180 after today.”

 

On playing LSU in the fall:

 

“We’ll be ready to play, no matter where the game is or who the opponent is, we prepare the same. We have to compete to get ready and play hard in the summer.”

 

On what he needs to improve on:

 

“I need to get better at blocking and making my fakes look better.”

 

On Ayele Forde:

 

“I love the kid, he works really hard and he listens well. He should be a scholarship player.”

 

 

#32 Colt Lyerla, TE

 

On being at Oregon:

 

“It’s hard to move from home and just to the offense here. I got a taste of what it’ll be like here.”

 

On today’s game:

 

“I had trouble getting lined up and getting used to the fast pace no huddle offense.”

 

On what he needs to improve on:

 

“I have to do more work on my own on getting used to the fast pace of this team and learning the hand signals.”

 

 

#47 Kiko Alonso, LB

 

On his injuries:

 

“My knee felt really good today, and mentally I feel great.”

 

On filling in for the seniors who left:

 

“We have to come back and fill in the seniors spots and learn how they controlled the defense. I need to step up and help control the defense and make plays.”

 

On the game:

 

“I feel like I moved around well and overall everyone played pretty well.”

 

On spring practices:

 

“The offense and defense both grew a lot during practice. We have leaders stepping up.”

 

 

#5 Darron Thomas, QB

 

On his development as a leader and quarterback:

 

“Just being consistent all the way through.  Working hard every day, trying to improve myself.  I haven’t sat back.  Just trying to be a leader, help the younger guys.  Being a teacher and having the coaches let me do it and do the talking.”

 

“For LaMichael, Kenjon and I, it will be on our shoulders.  But if we start it off, other guys will follow.”

 

On the freshmen who came in early:

 

“It’s hard.  None of them have got it (practice tempo).  Nobody gets it the first time.”

 

On the receiver group:

 

“It’s one of my key things.  We’ve got guys here and we got guys who are coming in.  As a group, those guys know they have to get better.”

 

On the offensive line this spring:

 

“All we asked for was improvements and that’s what they’ve done.  All I’ve seen is upside.”

 

On his mentality entering this spring :

“Coming into this spring I didn’t have to pressure to fight for my spot, so it allowed me to focus on becoming the leader of this team.”

 

 

#42 David Paulson, TE

 

On making plays and teaching:


“Hopefully that will happen more often this year.  I’m trying to help those guys learn the offense.  Bring them along.  Know how we practice here at Oregon.”

 

On Bryan Bennett:

 

“Bryan really has a lot of confidence out there and he knows what he’s doing.  I have a lot of confidence in Bryan if he needs to step up.”

 

On improving before fall:

 

“Its really up to the players and the leaders on the team for us to improve.”

 

On being a senior leader:

 

“It is crucial for me being a senior to show the younger players the right way to practice.”

 

# 90 Ricky Heimuli-DT

 

On honoring the army heroes :

 

“It felt great to be out there playing for the heroes that keep this country safe, so we can go out and play the game we love.”

 

 

#46 Michael Clay-LB

 

On the team unity :

 

“I feel like this group keeps getting closer and closer together the more that we are together, and today was perfect example of that.”

 

On the overall defense’s game :

 

“The white team’s defense played extremely hard, we worked together and put up a pretty good showing this early in the new season.”

 

 

#15 Lache Seastrunk-RB

 

On playing in his first game :

 

“I was glad to finally get out on the field and play in front of the home crowd, it gave me a preview as to what this coming season is going to be like.”

 

On skills that he still needs to fine tune :

 

“Coaches have been working on keeping me moving north to south instead of east to west, so that will be something that I focus on this summer as I prepare for the upcoming season.”

 

On honoring the army heroes :

 

“I love the tradition of honoring the army heroes; I still stay in touch with my army hero from last year.”

 

Coach Alioti

 

On the Autzen faithful :

 

“The state of Oregon loves their Ducks.”

 

On the Spring Game :

 

“Today is a lot of fun, not only for the players, but for us as well. We are able to come out and put a show on for the fans and honoring the army heroes just makes it that much better.”

 

On how the defense played today :

 

“In one way, shape or form we played defense all game.”

 

On the players’ duties this summer :

 

“As the coaches go off for recruiting in May it is important for the unit leaders to take charge and make sure that the rest of the unit is doing all they can to be the best unit on our squad.”

 

Coach Helfrich

 

On Darron Thomas’ maturation :

 

“Since Darron Thomas has become the starter his presence has changed, you can tell he is a totally different person. That is what this team needs and he is doing awesome with the burden that the coaches have put on his shoulders.”

 

On the keys to success for the offensive line :

 

“The communication is what makes this unit so special. We lost some important players from last year, but this group made the transition and is doing an exceptional job.”