In a game televised nationally on ESPN-U, the Idaho Vandals defeated the Colorado State Rams…
Player Post-Game: Vandals Top Warriors
About being 6-1 on the year: "I think it means a lot, but at the same time it doesn't really mean anything yet. We're bowl eligible, but it doesn't guarantee that we're going to get to a bowl game. So, it just means that we won six games. Good job, and go get number seven."
About the Vandal D being so close to get sacks in the past but coming up short, and actually getting four sacks today: "There is no play in any sport that even comes close to me than sacking the quarterback. That's one of the main things I like about football is the quarterback sack. I've hit home runs in baseball, and baskets in basketball, those are all good. But nothing even comes close to sacking the quarterback. And getting a QB sack to cause a fumble, that's one of the best plays in football."
About getting so much pressure on the QB today: "I think we've been playing against a lot of teams that are read option teams, have running quarterbacks, and that kinda keeps you off balance, as far as your pass rush is concerned. You can't really rush all out when you've got to think about the quarterback rolling out in the back of your mind. You know, Hawaii does what Hawaii does. They sit back there and try to pick you apart in the passing game. We just pinned our ears back and went for it, and I think that was the difference today."
About the forced fumble: "I just burned around the edge, off that left tackle and just tried to hit the quarterback as hard as I could. I didn't even know the ball came loose, until I started hearing people screaming. I stood up and the ball was like five yards down field. I said ‘I hope we recover it,' because if they recover that play went from a sack to a five yard gain. [laughter in media room] I was scared there for a second, but I think JoJo picked it up. That was good – it was mayhem on that field after that happened. I thought it was a good way to get things turned around a little bit."
About what it means being 6-1 now: "I think its great for our seniors, its great for our fans, for the whole team - coach Akey. It's a great start, but that's all it is – it's a start. We need to keep going, we need to keep playing good football. There's nothing guaranteed yet, but we need to keep playing well, and we have been."
About Idaho moving the ball so well in this game: "Like you said, we moved it pretty easy. Nothing against there defense, I just thought we played pretty well. We killed ourselves a few times in the first half, obviously, and didn't allow ourselves to get some points. In the second half we had some holding penalties that set us back, but we got through that and we came through a little adversity and made a big play."
About the confidence the offense gets from a player like DeMaundray in the redzone: "You've got a guy like that, you've got to use him – he's a weapon for sure. Especially down there. He's a redzone freak. The guy just does what he does."
About the 60-yard TD pass to Maurice Shaw: "I saw him get even with the corner, and if he gets even with the corner it's a pretty good matchup for us. So I put it out there and he made a nice catch."
Joseph "JoJo" Dickson
About whether playing Hawaii had anything extra with the game: "I tried to treat this as just another game, keep the extracurricular activity out – the extra excitement. I don't want to put too much pressure on myself or get over excited, so I just treat it as another game. It feels good."
About the ball bouncing right up to him on the fumble: "I didn't even see it come out at first, then at the last minute I saw it bounce on the ground. Oga Faumui is really the one who saved it. It could have been returned, none of us were around – it just bounced toward us. Couple guys missed it, and it was just right around my feet and I picked it up. I was trying to run with it, but I lost a shoe there. It was good for us to get that right there."
About controlling this game, and pulling away in the fourth: "We watched a lot of games they've played this year. We knew we had to get on them fast. If their offense gets rolling, they're dangerous. If we keep them inconsistent and keep shutting them down, we knew they would fold. So, we just tried to keep as much pressure on them - never took a play off. We made a great effort, and just flew around out there."
About DeMaundray stealing all his touchdowns: "I told him that's why when I get in there and I'm that close, I try to make sure that I score. Because I might not get to." [laughter in the media room]
About how much the program has changed in all the time he has been here: "It's changed a lot. In the beginning it was really rough, it was rough times with a lot of losses and everything, and especially with me not being able to play the first two seasons. Now that we've got things rolling its just seen a whole transformation. You can really notice a difference in our attitude, and a difference in everything in our locker room and the way that we go out and practice. From losing to winning, it's a big difference. When you're losing the demeanor is kind of low – and it's kind of like ‘lets try, lets try' kind of stuff. Out here we have more confidence and it's more about doing – not talking about doing, but about doing it. That's what Coach Akey always expresses. He says we can go out and say anything and get all riled up, but if we don't go out there and execute nothing is going to happen. That's what it's all about."
About the four touchdowns today: "My offensive line played incredible today. Man, I had a couple walk-ins. Yeah, they played great and I just did what I could to help the team win."
About feeling like he has found his "home" at Idaho since leaving Washington State: "I love it here. We're a family. We play together, we play as a team. We even have a saying everytime we take the field, and it is ‘Team'. We're a family here, we're trying to keep these team wins going."
About being 6-1 on the year: "Means a lot, and it usually means that we're bowl eligible. [laughter in the media room] That feels great for us, because we put in a lot of work to get here."
About all the hard work for the team - and him personally - finally paying off: "Yes it is, and I give thanks to God. He's been with me through a lot – I've been through a lot, and I've had to work hard to get back to where I'm at. I'm enjoying it, and hopefully I can keep enjoying it."
About being so composed despite a stellar four touchdown performance: "In Texas we preach this: "Be humble in victory, give God the glory." We won as a team. The blocking up front, if they don't block it I don't get into the endzone. Yes, I get the four touchdowns, but I really feel like they should give it to the team."
About getting back on the field: "Going from two weeks ago, to hearing that I might be out for the season, to being able to make plays for my team today is just a blessing. A blessinig from God. I'm just so thankful."
About what he learned from being on the sidelines the last couple weeks: "You know, you learn a lot. It puts a lot of things in perspective, not being able to be out there. You really understand it's a blessing, a privilege, to be in this position. I give all the thanks to God, and to the trainers who were on me everyday to come in and get my kidney checked. I'm really thankful to be in the position I'm in."
About keeping focused on more wins as the season progresses: "By coming to work hungry. And we have leaders – like Big Mike (Mike Iupati), Irvin (Irvin Stevens) – a lot of guys on the line who have been here for so long and have put in the work and seen how things can change really quick. And just never being satisfied, that's the motto that we have as a team. That helps us stay hungry, that helps us prepare just as hard as we did the previous week."
About the improvement in the wide receiver unit this year over last: "I think it's a testament to how hard we worked this summer. I can't think of anybody, from the guys that are making plays this year and guys from skill positions, and from the line and all around, we were all here as a unit. I think we had something like 99% attendance this summer, so it really starts there. Because you see how last year we might not have been getting that separation, now we're getting that separation and we're bouncing off tackles and it's a testament to how hard we worked. Now it's coming to fruition, now you're seeing it on the field."
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