Fitz said that he thought the game against Minnesota was the best the defensive line had played so far. Do you agree?
It's hard to say. I think we've been playing pretty consistently all year. We definitely had some bad games, but I think, obviously, this past weekend was one of our better performances, especially late in the game when it really mattered. When it came down to it, our guys, I mean Brian Arnfelt played lights out, Tyler Scott was crazy productive out there and I was really happy to see Sean (McEvilly) playing really well, playing with a good base and playing real powerful out there.
Is it easier to prepare for a mobile quarterback when you have one in practice?
We don't really see Kain (Colter) much as a first team defense. They kind of keep him away from us. They usually put him against the second team defense, but we've seen Kain a little bit and we have some shifty guys out here that can take that spot and take the ball under center or in the shotgun and just run around, but we don't really get the dual-threat aspect that (Minnesota quarterback MarQueis) Gray has and that Kain has with that. So it's always tough going against a dual-threat quarterback like that, but I think we make the best of it. We have great scout team guys. This week, Stephen Buckley is doing a great job so far trying to imitate Taylor Martinez and his running style, so that's just what we've got to do.
Is it tougher to prepare for mobile quarterbacks, or are you guys starting to figure it out now?
It's just a little bit different. You can't take quite as many risks as a pass-rusher. You might like to, but at the same time, you know that he wants to have the ball in his hands. There's a give and take there, I guess, so it's definitely a little tougher, but it's just something that comes with the game.
You guys always talk about how this year's team has better chemistry than last year's. Was the chemistry bad on last year's team?
I don't want to comment on last year. I just think that we've really grown a lot as a team this year and I think that's one of our biggest positives and one of our biggest advantages. We watch film together, we spend a lot of the time in the summer together, and the offseason. I've said it time and time again, I think it's really paying off.
Is that something new this year — you guys spending more time together?
I think the coaches always kind of preach that getting together and doing things together is a huge thing. We've always been a big believer in that, but I think, a lot of our seniors this year, our seniors and upper clansmen decided to take it on ourselves and really try and make that the reality this year. So I think it's definitely a testament to all of our leaders. All of the guys on leadership council — you can go down the line — all of those guys are a part of that group that game together. There are more guys — I could definitely name a few, but I'd keep going. We have probably, the top 30 percent of our guys are very strong leaders and the rest of them are great athletes and they know how to follow and lead themselves, as well.