Utah State head coach Gary Andersen and Weber State head coach Ron McBride addressed the media Tuesday, meeting in the middle in Brigham City, Utah at the Eagle Mountain Golf Course Clubhouse.COACH A AND MAC BACK AGAIN — USU head coach Gary Andersen is facing his former coach and mentor in Weber State head coach Ron McBride… Andersen played under McBride at Utah in 1985-86 when Andersen was a center and McBride was offensive line coach for the Utes… Andersen also served as an assistant under Utes head coach McBride from 1997-2002, when Andersen was defensive tackles/SS ends (1997-2000), assistant head coach/def. tackles/SS ends/special teams coord. (2001) and asst. head coach/defensive line coach (2002)… Together at Utah Coach Andersen and Coach McBride amassed a 39-29 (.573) record, winning two Las Vegas Bowls in 2000 and 2002… Saturday is the first time facing each other as fellow head coaches, but were on opposite sidelines on two other occasions, first in 1994, when Andersen was defensive line coach at Idaho State and McBride was Utah’s head coach, with the Utes blasting the Bengals, 66-0, on Sept. 10, 1994, and then again in 2008 when McBride led Weber State into Salt Lake City to play at Utah, where Andersen was defensive coordinator, and the 17th-ranked Utes beat the Wildcats, 37-21, on Sept. 27, 2008.COACH McBRIDE AND COACH ANDERSENMcBride: It’s a good trip. I like this football team, real good team. It’s the best Aggie team I have seen in some years on film. You guys are awful good and Gary’s to be congratulated on what he’s done on his patience and hard work he’s put together on something real special so we will come up and see what we can do. We will take the bus up there. Or will you loan me your driver?Andersen: (Laughs), yeah you can have himMcBride: Will he pick me up?Andersen: Yes he will have some time. He can do that.McBride: For Weber, I think its important that we play these in state games, Utah State, Utah, BYU; I think it’s the only way you have the opportunity to gain any respect and so I’m looking forward to it and you know I think this particular team at Utah State is going to go a long ways, you know they have all their pieces in the puzzle put together. The QB is awful good, the runners are good, the offensive line does good steps and the right thing and obviously, defensively a good bit of players over there.Andersen: First of all, Mac talks a lot about the respect and before we talk about Weber State, my respect for Mac, and I mean everybody that knows me knows how much I respect Coach McBride, I would not be in this profession, would not have the opportunities I would have had without Coach Mac. I have said a many times he’s like a second dad, I have had him as a coach and he’s a tough guy then and as an assistant coach under him and he taught me many, many things, not just football wise but he taught me about how to handle situations and to be real honest, he taught me how to get through some of the situations that we are going through this last weekend and how to continue how to fight he’s more than a mentor he’s a special person to me and always will be. If you move on to Weber, we know exactly what we are going get a team that’s going be unbelievably prepared. A team that wants to be physical and a team that will be physical, its not their choice to be physical, it’s the head coach that will have physical football team and they will play extremely hard. They love the man they play for. Its always going be that way so we are going to have a team that’s very excited to play. All you have got to do is throw on the tape and see what they did against Wyoming: Many opportunities to win the game, at the end didn’t go their way but dominated in my opinion the defense of Wyoming, and the run game, an especially consistent run game, it’s not like they run the ball for 80 yards here or 70 yards there, it was a consistent run game for four quarters and that was very impressive to me and caught my eye very, very quickly. The offensive side of the ball as far as what we have to be able to see it, is be able to control the football and they are going to be an aggressive defense that’s going be schooled up and understanding exactly where they are going and what direction they are headed so it’s a good team. After game one I guess you can look at both teams and say that they are good football teams that didn’t win but its my respect for Weber State as a program is very high. You all know how I feel about the head coach.Question – For games when you face friends, are they more difficult?Andersen: This is a Dad for me. It is one thing to play against (Idaho head coach) Rob Akey at Idaho or what have you, that’s a friend, or (Utah head coach) Kyle (Whittingham) that’s a friend. This is different for me, but does it change the way you prepare – no it doesn’t do anything different. I mean we all believe in the way you prepare for a game and what we are setting ourselves up for a team to do the best they can do and play at the best of their abilities but it’s a honor for me to be able to have him be across the sidelines and take some pride. He pushed me to get into this profession and encouraged me, and I take some pride in the fact that I have been able to do what he thought I would do when I was 20 years old and basically confused on what the next step of life would be and he told me where to go and what to do.McBride: You were confused! What did you want to be – a rocket scientist?Andersen: Uhhh, probably not. You know me better than that. You’re the one who told me to major in political science and be a lawyer. That was a mistake! (Laughs).McBride: Did I tell you to major in political science?Andersen: Yes you did, because I didn’t have to take that one math class remember.McBride: Skip math. Laughs. That’s what I tell everyone now! Skip math!Andersen: I agree. YepQuestion – Coach Mac, how good of a player was this guy?McBride: Gary was as tough a guy. Gary played with injuries, Gary played no matter what and so he was- every Saturday regardless of what shape he was in or what problems he had he played and he played hard and he was a leader and the guy was a natural for this profession when he was a played. You could tell some guys are destined for certain things and Gary’s whole demeanor as a player told me ‘hey this kids needs to be a coach’ and he fell right into it and it was a natural thing for him and it was where we belonged. Now you see where he is now and you know obviously I’m very proud of what he’s done and there was no doubt in my mind when Utah State selected him as a head coach he was the only guy they could select. And that’s what I told the people up there when they talked to me, I said ‘hey there’s only one guy that will do what you need to get done here so its not like you need to look around because this is the guy that can get it done.’ He knows how to do it, he fights through the tough times to get to the good times. He knows how to handle adversity, he knows what has to be done and he’s one of these guys that 24 hours a day that’s what he thinks about. He thinks about football, he thinks about kids in this program and what they have to do to succeed. I’m certainly proud of what he’s done and this particular team is a good example of how he’s put it together piece by piece.Question – Coach Mac, you have always been treated well by the Aggie crowd, haven’t you?McBride: Yes – I haven’t had no problem with the Aggie crowd. They use to have a door to listen to what we were doing, right?Andersen: Ahhh, that’s a great story. Let me tell you what he did. We would go to Utah State and I’m convinced of it because that what Mac is convinced of what happened. He’s got the GA’s yelling thought this door and vent at half time so the Utah State guys can’t hear what we are doing at halftime. But what about that one time we drove to Logan and we were late! And you had (former Utah assistant coach Alex) Gerke up at the very front of the bus directing. We were going the wrong way down Main Street because we were going be late to the stadium. Mac wasn’t real happy on that moment. That’s for sure.McBride: Yeah, there’s been a lot of famous stories with the Aggies and the Utes and actually one of the players that played up there told me about it, and he was actually a family member. And so he called my wife and said, ‘Hey, tell Coach to make sure that those guys listen to the door to know what they do at halftime to what adjustments you’re making to make sure you put someone at the door,’ so my wife said ‘check out that door at halftime!’Andersen: We don’t have vents anymore, we have cameras and stuff in there now!McBride: I said ok, we have that covered. Then there was that one time with that greased jersey. A d-lineman came off and he hands were full of grease and I said, ‘what did you get on your hands’ and he said ‘I don’t know, its on this guy’s jersey.’ Then I remember they denied it and then one of the kids that played, it was another guy that I knew well, I said ‘hey Brad, what about this greased jersey’ and he said the coach put it on there and I said, really, you’ve got to be kidding’ and he blamed it on the equipment guy, so yeah there’s been some stories and there’s been some interesting stories over the years. Remember that time where they clipped the two linemen, lost their knees when the guys took their knees out on the PAT?Andersen: Was I there?McBride: Yeah, I don’t know if you were there or not. I remember almost everything with the Aggies! Andersen: (Laughs) He does remember everything.Question – Coach Mac, Coach Andersen refers to you as a father figure – is coaching against former players and former coaches a proud papa moment for you? McBride: Well I don’t wanna be a proud papa this weekend, but yeah sure, when I watched that film of them against Auburn and watched the game on TV I was really proud of what they did and of course last year when they beat BYU up there, and you guys played well, man I was ecstatic! That was like a birthday present you know. I can see for all those USU fans that it was like the whole world came off their shoulders, you know, like ‘Oh my God…we did it and we did it in good fashion.’ And so had these guys – I had talked to these guys afterward and they were probably partying for two days. I don’t know, but they were having a good time. The truth?Andersen: Oh yeah, when you beat BYU, that’s always a good time right Coach.Question – Coach Mac, I guess you had never done this before, coached against a guy you coached, who was an assistant, and now is a head coach. Is this a first for you?Andersen: Maybe Kyle?Mac: Uhh well, Kyle didn’t play for me. Kyle was at BYU, so yeah I think so. I have coached a lot of guys so its hard to remember all of them but this is good. It’s good for us to have an opportunity to play these guys and I wish they weren’t quite as good as they are, but you gotta play with what you get. Andersen: It’s important to remember a lot of the things that we do as a program and what we believe as a program, the views of our core of recruiting, a lot of the things we due we establish from Coach Mac. He started that and no one else can claim to take a hold of that idea. There’s gurus who claim they are this and that and Mac had never say it but the beliefs and what we believe as a program what I believe fits in very special places and very few places. And the state of Utah is where I believe our plan works and what our plan is very simple and everyone knows it and this guy was the first gut who took a chance on this plan and I still remember the day when Utah was able to beat BYU on Scott Mitchell and that was the first time when people finally looked at that and said ‘how’s the University of Utah going to turn around and have a mission program? How’s Utah going be able to get Polynesian players in their program, which was very very foreign. How is Utah going play with 50 kids from the state of Utah on their roster?’ And those are all core beliefs of Utah State. They are what I grew up in and he’s the one who started it and he’s the one who showed obviously it works very, very well in a couple programs. And I can’t let that go with at least publicly saying that.Question – Is there a predictability from knowing his style after all these years?Andersen: I don’t know about key moments in the game and key times but I know certain football teams have a certain demeanor and a certain demand of what the head coach wants them to be and toughness is one with Mac. Running the football is another. He’s going do a tremendous job of using personnel and letting his coaches put his kids in the right spots and be sound but at the end of the day there’s going be that toughness factor of wanting to be able to pound the football, and I don’t care who they play. That was very evident in the first game of the year. They were able to walk into Wyoming and say they are going to run the ball at you and if they can’t run the ball at you they are going keep trying to run the ball at you. And if we can’t we are going find another way to run the ball at you and be physical. You know what Coach Mac’s teams are going to be and that’s tough, hard working, believe in themselves, he will have them fired up and ready to play and he will have them walk on that field absolutely 100 percent believing that they can win that football game, just as I did as a player and every game that I played for Coach Mac, I always believed regardless of the circumstances that number one, I was prepared and number two, we were going to go in there and win that football game and that will be no different.McBride: Gary’s softening me up. I’ll go out of here and be a little puppy dog. Gary’s saying all these nice things about me. I can’t believe you’re saying all those nice things about me.Andersen: You know its true! McBride: I don’t know about all that. That’s a trip. Truth in all things, Gary loves you, but wants to kick your ass. ‘We love you but we want to kick the hell out of you.’ (Laughs)Question – You’re the same way Coach McBride, right?Andersen: Absolutely!McBride: No. I’m not. Andersen: No, he doesn’t love me! (Laughs)I just want to be real nice to Coach Andersen and I want to help your program.Andersen: So we can go ahead and put tape recorders in all of your team meetings this week just to see what you are saying to them?McBride: I am sure it’s just the same song and dance as 40 years ago. I am too old for the gimmicks anymore.-USU-
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