Kansas Football Holds Final Bowl Practice Tuesday

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Jan. 2, 2008

MIAMI, Fla. - Kansas football ran through its final practice session on Tuesday as the Jayhawks prepare for the Thursday's FedEd Orange Bowl game against Virginia Tech.  The Jayhawks worked out for about one hour, including the final minutes in a heavy downpour.

 

The team will get its first look at Dolphin Stadium on Wednesday when the team goes through a walk through at the facility.  While there, the group will get together for a team photo

 

 

Kansas Quotes (Jan. 1)


 

 

 

Mark Mangino, Head Coach

 

On how the players have handled the distractions in Miami ...

They seem focused. In meetings, everything is good. The kids are focused in and the practice field has been good. There's been no difference. The tempo is the same, just like when we're at home. I don't see any changes. I want them to have fun, but they also know when it's time to work and I think they've managed that well.

 

On playing in the only BCS game on Thursday night  and the added national attention ...

It's a big game. Our kids are smart. We're not going to try to fool them and just tell them that this is just another game. But it's still football. The field is a hundred yards, they have 11, we have 11. It's the same concept, just a few more people will be paying attention to it.

 

On Virginia Tech's experience in big games ...

It's more of the case were we're focused on us and what we can do and how we can handle things and that's been our approach. The only thing that we are concerned about them is what we see on videotape, their talent, their skills, their personnel. That's the depth of our analysis of them. You just can't go by who's played in more big games and that type of thing over the years, because time and time again, those teams don't always win the games. It's seems as though they have an advantage. People would tell you that, but I don't see that. I think you have to show up and play the game. Games in the past don't effect players today as much as one would think.

 

Did the rain at today's practice alter anything ...

It rained the last 10 minutes of our practice. We got everything done that we needed to do. We got accomplished what we needed to.

 

On the rain being a welcomed break from the hot weather ...

The rain will just bring more humidity, so I don't think we need a cooling off period out there. We'd a done just as well without it. The player's have been managing the temperature pretty well.

 

On having fun during the week in Miami ...

I've done what I like to do. I've enjoyed myself. I don't particularly need to go to any clubs or do anything like that. The best part of it is, you're with your family every day and you're living in the same quarters and you see them every day. You see your players every day. You see some of their families and get a chance to talk to them. I've enjoyed my time here.

 

I like to sit around and talk to people and just converse. And do those types of things. Walk around on the grounds. I've enjoyed myself.

 

 

On whether a high scoring game would be to Kansas advantage ...

I just want to see us have more points on the scoreboard at the end of the day. I'll settle for that.

 

 

 

#88 - Dexton Fields, JR, WR

 

On how much the rain effected practice ...

It didn't effect it much. It was really toward the end. We had pretty good weather until the end. It really didn't effect us much.

 

On how the team feels two days prior to the game ...

Yeah, we're pretty confident. We know all of our assignments and all we have to do now is execute. Go out and execute and play our game.

 

On Kerry Meier and how he handles himself this season ...

You can tell from his play. He played good at quarterback when he got the chance. He played good at receiver when he got the chance, so you have to tip your hat to him.

 

On other players willingness to play multiple positions like Kerry Meier ...

Aqib [Talib] he plays on offense and defense. Whenever we need some help on offense he comes over plays offense. That's the only other person that really has the opportunity to play both sides or play more than one position, that's not special teams.

 

On how Coach Mangino has been here in Miami for bowl preparations ...

He's been a little more focused. He tries to keep us focused. It's kind of easy to come down to Miami and worry about having fun ... because it is Miami. He's tried his best to keep us focused and I think he's done a pretty good job.

 

On what Coach Mangino has done differently to keep the team focused ...

He's reminded us every day before practice that this is a business trip. It's not vacation. We can have fun, but there's a time to have fun and there's a time to get down to business.

 

 

 

#87 - John Larson, Junior, DE

 

On whether today's rain had an effect on practice ...

Well it's been great since we've been down here last couple of days. Today's the first day it started raining. We were just getting after it. Doing the same things we've been doing. It started raining in the second half so 30 minutes tops.

 

On being ready to play the game...

It's been great being down here getting a little vacation time, hang out, and get to see Miami, but right now we're focused on the game and it couldn't come soon enough.

 

On whether preparation for the game is complete ...

Yeah. We've seen every game of them two or three times, every cut up, so no stone has been left unturned. At this point we have everything covered.

 

On what impresses him most about Virginia Tech's offense ...

They've got a dual quarterback look. #5 [Tyrod Taylor] can really run, scramble, he's a great athlete. #7 [Sean Glennon] has pretty strong arm, so the different looks that they can give you like that is pretty impressive.

 

On what Mark Mangino is like ...

He's really good with a work ethic. He keeps everything regimented and he stays true to his word. Anything that he tells the players that he says he's going to do policy-wise, he sticks to his guns. We all know what to expect from him and I like that, consistency from a coach.

 

On whether he is different on game days than during the week ...

No. It's pretty much even keeled. He's ready to work every day and game day is the same deal. We just go out there and do our job.

 

On most of the hype being on the Kansas offense vs. the Virginia Tech defense ...

Va Tech has a great defense and I love out offense. I would definitely say that our defense has to go out there and do our job. That's pretty much all I can control. If we get out there and force turnovers, stop them ... give our offense a short field. That's definitely going to help them in the game.

 

On Missouri playing and defeating Arkansas 38-7 in the Cotton Bowl ...

They put on a pretty good show. They're a pretty solid team.

 

 

On whether there is more pressure because some have said that Missouri belongs in the Orange Bowl ...

No. There's not more pressure. We think we've had a really good season and we're just looking to finish up strong, get our 12th win and show the country what we can do.

 

On not playing well against Missouri in front of a big crowd at Arrowhead Stadium ...

I think everybody learned a valuable lesson from that. It was a real frustrating game. A couple missed plays here and there, but we're all excited to get out there and show everybody what we can do.

 

On Virginia Tech having more big bowl game experience than Kansas ...

I don't think so, it's another game. It's great that it's the Orange Bowl. It's great that it's a January game, but for us it's still game 13 and win number 12 and that's what we're really focused on accomplishing.

 

As part of a KU Lied Center promotion, the nationally known Flat Stanley made an appearance at Saturday's practice.

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