Quotables: UCLA’s Rick Neuheisel and Rahim Moore

UCLA head coach Rick Neuheisels opening statement: “We’ve got a very challenging schedule, but I think we’ve made strides over the last couple of years to give ourselves the right to call ourselves a good football team this year. We’re very, very excited about beginning the season.”

Neuheisel on the Pac-12 split: “Last night they put five coaches on one plane and five on the other, and I think Larry was just telling us how he was doing it. I understand that there are more things in play: television dollars, chances to be in Los Angeles. I’m just going to duck that question and say smarter people will decide that.”

Neuheisel on his 2010 goal: “Be better than we were last year. I want the momentum to keep going. (We were) 4-8 in year one, certainly not what I expected. We endured it, tried to learn through it. Last year we went through a miserable month of October. Found a way to right the ship, got to a bowl game and won it. All those things led to a real great work ethic, an excitement about going forth. For the first I’ve been at UCLA, we’re an experienced football team. We’ve got players like Rahim and Kevin Prince at quarterback, Akeem Ayers, guys who have played and played at a high level.”

Neuheisel on Colorado joining the Pac-10: “1995, I was given the head job at Colorado . It was a dream come true, I was 33 at the time, and at that time, there were some overtures from the Pac-10. I hadn’t coached a game yet, but (the university president) asked what I thought, and I said I would tell you the Pac-10 is a wonderful conference. Obviously they didn’t choose to go that way. Colorado will be a great partner to this conference. It’s a great school, I can tell you that from experience. I think they’re going to be a great player.”

Neuheisel on the Pac-10 East Coast swing: “I want to compliment Commish Scott in trying to change Pac-10 culture. We’ve been that left coast conference, that finesse conference. They say, ‘Oh you guys just play that throwing around ball, not that tough guy stuff, three yards and a cloud of dust. Commisioner Scott going to NY and taking that East Coast bias head on, I thought that was a bold move. Having gone through it, I thought it was brilliant.”

Neuheisel on UCLA’s 66-point outburst against Texas in 1997: “1997 wasn’t a great year for us at Colorado, and I wasn’t paying attention to other games. We played Texas that same year; you could tell there would be a change. That isn’t the case anymore. They have one of the preeminent programs in the country. they’re going to be as good a team as we’ve played. It’ll be great for our players to go to a place like Austin, Texas. Much like going to Tennessee a year ago, we’ve got to try to block out those distractions.”

Neuheisel on the team’s character: “Every coach that goes to a prgram has to win over the players who are in it. ‘I’m a UCLA Bruin just like you are. I’m priveleged to say this is my school.’ There is comfort in that I’ve been in each of these kid’s homes. I’ve got relationships with their parents. I can dig a little deeper, having had that relationship.”

Neuheisel on the USC sanctions: “I’ve been asked 100 times about the sanctions at our cross-town rivals – truthfully, we can’t take the time to worry about that. They had something we wanted; they were the Pac-10 champs when we got here. Now Oregon has what we want.”

Neuheisel on the new offense: “Norm and I evaluated the season, and our running numbers aren’t what they need to be successful. We have to be consistent running the football. It will take pressure off the quarterback, off the playcaller, off the defense. It has to be done.”

UCLA safety Rahim Moore on topping his 10 interceptions last season: “Just doing all I can to get better. It’s not about topping last year. If I could, I would take back the picks to get 10 wins. It’s about getting better. Thsiyear is a good year for us to showcase ourselves on a big stage. This year is not about me, it’s about the team.”

Moore on the best Pac-10 passing attack: “Washington and Arizona. They do a good job of route-recognition. Washington does a great job with the spread, and not only do they do a great job, they blend well. You have to really come with it. This year they’ll be even better. What I’ve been doing is getting my secondary better.”

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  • Anonymous

    Did Neuheisel really say “Obvy”?

  • Anonymous

    Neuheisel eturning to Colorado every other year, that’s going to be tough on the team. UCLA is going to be the most despised school in the Pac for Colorado.