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November 20, 2008
Fisher & Ponder review practice, preview Maryland
Offensive Coordinator Jimbo Fisher
Quarterback Christian Ponder
Q: How were this week's practices?
Ponder: It was good. I thought we had our mind's screwed on. I think at the beginning of the week you could tell people were still a little disappointed and had their heads down but today people came out and had fun. So we are getting back to where we were before and that is football being fun. We are getting there. I thought the whole week went pretty well, it was pretty good.
Q: What is it going to take for the team to bounce back?
Ponder: To forget about last week. We just have to come out, we just have to execute and play how we can play. I think if we can play and do as well as we can then we will be okay.
Q: What is it like playing at Byrd Stadium against Maryland?
Ponder: It is tough. I was up there two years ago, it is tough. It is a pretty tough environment, it is pretty cold, but it is going to be like any other game. We have to come out and play how we can play. We cant really worry about anything else. We just have to focus on playing.
Q: They are not a team that stands out statistically, does that make the team eager to play especially coming off a loss?
Ponder: Yeah, we are. We are but I don't think the rankings really show how good they are. They are a lot like Boston College, they execute well, they are very disciplined, and they are very physical. We are going to have a tough challenge for us but if we come out and execute how we can then we will be okay.
Q: How important is it for you to have a good game against a zone coverage?
Ponder: Yeah, it is going to be good. If you look back Virginia Tech was a zone team. Georgia Tech was a zone team. A lot of teams that we played were zone teams as well. We can have success, it is just really about execution and it is about the small things. As long as we focus on those things we can do well.
Q: What is the mood around this team going into this game and trying to bounce back?
Ponder: I think definitely we can. I think earlier in the week we were a little down. I think a couple of guys were still focused on the lost but come Tuesday most guys were focused and ready to bounce back. We worked hard all week and I thought this week was one of our best practices.
Q: How do you build up a resiliency to bounce back?
Ponder: It is just really the guys that we have. The kind of character that we have on this team. It is really the character on this team. We have a lot of good guys and a lot of guys that want to win and who care about this team and doing what they can and what they have to win.
Q: Is it different playing in the cold?
Ponder: Oh yeah, it is very different. The balls are dry, they are pumped up more, and your arm is freezing. It is definitely different. Once we get out there and start playing it isn't a factor at all because you start warming up.
Q: As a quarterback, do you try to stay loose on the sidelines in those kinds of conditions?
Ponder: Yeah, definitely. That is a big factor, especially your shoulder. You have to keep it loose. Hopefully we will have the heaters and the jackets on the sidelines. Once the game gets going we will be fine.
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