FAU LB Cergile Sincere spoke to reporters on Wednesday about Saturday's game with Minnesota.
Sept. 12, 2007
Are you ready for a Big Ten Opponent in Minnesota?
"I don't think we're ready right now (Wednesday), we're going to be ready by the end of the week and I believe we will be. But we've got a lot of nicked people right now. So it's not gameday, but we're getting closer.
How much do their offensive weapons concern you?
Of course they concern me, their whole team gives me great reason to be very concerned. They've got a good football team with very good football players. So, as always, they've probably have more guys that have played more football games than we do, they probably have more guys that were picked higher in the draft than we have. So, we're always concerned, we're concerned when we play in our league. Fearful? No. Unsure? No. Concerned? Yes.
"It's going to be a very physical game. I still have a bad taste in my mouth from playing those guys in 2005. It's going to definitely be physical on the defensive side of the ball because we know what to expect, we know what they bring to the table. We're just going to come in, and hopefully be ready to pull a W on it."
A lot of people look at Minnesota and see that it's the best chance to pull off a non-conference win. What did you guys think about Minnesota when you saw they were on the schedule?
"I was actually kind of happy to see that we have them on the schedule again for the simple fact that when we played them in 2005 we played them when they were at their strongest point. And now with everything changing with all their coordinators and the offensive coordinator and the different style of play, they don't play the same kind of smash mouth football that they used to play. They do the more read the zone, option like every other team in college football is starting to do now. So that will give us a chance to expose our speed on defense, and to get to the ball instead of just straight, physical, smash mouth. And then the size advantage doesn't even really matter in this game because they're just trying to stretch us out, so we're going to use the speed at linebackers and DB's are going to keep everything in front of them so we can give the team a chance to win."
That's definitely a goal, that's a goal that we can achieve. Like Coach Schnellenberger said it's one of the advance training games, and if we can come out with a victory in one of those games the confidence of the team on each side of the ball will definitely be raised, and we'll be playing on a whole different level. And we'll have beaten a team that nobody else in the country expected us to beat, especially now with the Big Ten now it's crazy with Michigan losing and stuff like that, so there isn't any telling who's going to win, especially this year it's kind of crazy. If we come out with a W against Minnesota, it will definitely set the tone for our whole conference in general."
Minnesota is averaging over 500 yards in offense, over 36 points per game, what do you think you need to do to shut them down?
"Stop the run. They're definitely going to come in to run the ball, and that's what we look forward to all week. We've been game-planning on that all week, practicing, like I said they plan to bend the zone, and that's something we see every week in the Sun Belt so our goal is to stop the run and make them pass. And they've got a pretty good quarterback, and if we can make him pass the ball we give our selves a good chance to come out victorious."
What happened against Oklahoma State?
I don't know, we watched film on our performance and we make some mistakes and stuff like that, but, I still don't understand why we couldn't get the ball going. Personally, I could've done some things better as far as getting some blocks made, everybody could do a little better, if one person makes a block here, one person makes a block there, it makes a huge difference in the result of a run, it goes from a three yard gain to a 15-yard gain. I could've done a little better on that, and I'm sure some of the O-line could tell you that they could've done a little bit better blocking for Charles (Pierre) and Willie (Floyd) and DiIvory (Edgecomb) and everyone. Overall, I still don't know how we could get the running game going.
Was the game tougher than it could've been with David Matlock not being able to play?
The thing is like I've played with Matlock, this will be my second year playing with him. We really have a gel going through camp and in the first game. It's not that it's hard playing with Kevin (Miller) it's just that you get so used to one person being there the whole time that when it changes, the other person has different tendencies and things like that, it didn't make it difficult, it's just different.
You're facing a team (in Minnesota) that's giving up over 500 yards in offense a game, do you think you can turn things around in this game?
"I'm really excited about playing Minnesota because I think it's going to be a good game, it's going to be a tough physical game. The reason I think the other team's got over 500 yards was they (Miami (OH) and Bowling Green) are spread offenses which is four, five receivers no running backs so they're going to throw the ball and get big plays and make a lot of yards. What we're going to do is run the football, try to, as best we can. And control the tempo of the game and really wear them down, at one o'clock in the afternoon in south Florida. And not only beat them up that way but let the weather beat them up."
Is this the best chance you have to get a non-conference win?
"If we win this game, the confidence will be huge for this team. We'll feel unstoppable, it would be the kind of confidence that can take us the rest of the season and give us that spark we need to just go out there and play aggressive and good solid football on both sides of the ball."