On potentially losing his starting spot:
“The coaches have just said they’re going to try people at different spots in case a guy up front goes down. We don’t want to send somebody in there who doesn’t know what they’re doing. We don’t know what’s going on right now. I kind of got over it – if I’m the starter come game day, that’s fine.”
On how a stinger injury last week cost him:
“The injury just kind of set me back. It put me in the back, not all the way in the bottom, but coaches had to sort of take precautionary measures. They had to stick somebody else in there.”
On not getting to play on Saturday because of the fires:
“We’d be pretty fierce if we didn’t get to play Saturday. We wouldn’t have it. We’d be pissed, practicing all summer, real hard, getting ready for a team we know nothing about. Everybody would be pretty much heated. We’d be waiting for the next game, definitely.”
After announcing the starting offensive line earlier this week, it seems UCLA has changed things a bit.
As it stands, Mike Harris is scheduled to start at right tackle, Stanley Hasiak at left guard and Jeff Baca backing both up.
Or, at least, that’s the plan going into the weekend’s meetings.
Offensive line coach Bob Palcic said that he and Rick Neuheisel would review the scrimmage tape and start the two who played best.
“I’m going to make one final meeting with Coach Neuheisel to see which direction we’re going,” Palcic said. “Harris or Baca at tackle and Baca or Hasiak at left guard. We’ll make the decision this weekend. We wanted to give them all an opportunity. That was the purpose of the scrimmage, and it’s whoever played best in the scrimmage. I gave them all work with the ones, and whoever played best in the scrimmage will start next Saturday.”
Palcic loves Baca’s ability to play multiple positions, and he might even use Baca situationally.
“I think I have the luxury of moving a couple people around,” Palcic said. “Baca can play both positions, and I even work with him in the center/QB exchange. I like my guys to have two positions, because that’s what I’m used to in the NFL. ”
Freshman offensive lineman Stanley Hasiak is nursing a sore shoulder after a stinger in practice on Monday. Hasiak was dressed out but did not participate in practice.
“I’m good, coaches and trainers just said it’d be better if I took a day off,” Hasiak said. “I need to get my neck back right. I’ve been through (stringers), but the coaches just wanted to let me rest.”
Neuheisel on the post-practice skirmish between Stanley Hasiak and Reggie Carter:
“We have a bunch of guys who are willing to stand up. Now it’s just, stand up at the appropriate times. I’m enthused by the fight in our team, now it just has to be harnessed.”
On preparing for a new head coach in San Diego State’s Brady Hoke:
“You just try to harness as much info from the backgrounds of the particular coaches. And you guess. You guess. The hard part about that for us is you’ve got so many new players that you feel like you might be giving them too much. Stuff that they might not need to know because it might not happen. It’s a quandary. It’s tough.”
UCLA confirmed its starters on the offensive line as follows…
Left Tackle: Freshman Xavier Su’a-Filo
Left Guard: Freshman Stanley Hasiak
Center: Sophomore Kai Maiava
Right Guard: Junior Eddie Williams
Right Tackle: Sophomore Jeff Baca
Your analysis is welcomed, and I will do my best to provide answers…
Here’s my brief encounter with Stanley Hasiak:
1) “For me, no matter where I went I was going to compete for a starting spot. Whether it was going to be hard or easy, I didn’t know. In this situation, I’ve been getting in my reps, been competing, and it’s still up in the air.”
2) “For all freshmen, the difficulty is the same. For the young guys to come in and compete against older guys, the older guys have a lot more experience, a lot more experience working their technique.”
3) “The key to a good offense is the offensive line. We’re trying to bring back the tradition, or maybe even start the tradition, of having great offensive linemen. Guys who will get down and grind. Guys who’ll get down and do the dirty work like they’re supposed to.”
Caught up with offensive line coach Bob Palcic real quick, and here’s what he had to say…
On Xavier Su’a-Filo and Stanley Hasiak:
“I think they’re real good, young kids, but let’s remember they’re just incoming freshmen,” Palcic said. “It’s extremely difficult at any level, whether you come in as a rookie in the pros or go from high school to college, it takes time and patience. But I think they have the qualities and abilities that will make them really good players here at one time.”
On the transition from high school to college and the odds of freshmen linemen getting playing time:
“The offensive line and the quarterback are the two toughest places to make the transition in,” Palcic said. “That’s not going to change. If they’re good enough, that’s fine with me. I’ve started freshmen before, and I’m not afraid to do it again.”