At media day, I caught up with some of the Big East's brightest young football players.
USF's Quentin Washington and Jeremiah Warren, Pitt's Mike Shanahan (pictured) and Jarred Holley, Kendall Reyes and Moe Petrus of Connecticut and Rutgers' David Rowe shared some of their thoughts on life as a Big East football player.
Quentin Washington, USF: "All of them; any time you go on the road, it's tough. The fans are so passionate [In the Big East]".
Mike Shanahan, Pitt: "West Virginia. They hate us there!"
Jarred Holley, Pitt: "West Virginia. It's so loud there, and the rivalry is so big."
Moe Petrus, CT: "West Virginia. Intense, and the crowd is so involved"
Kendall Reyes, CT: "Rentchler Field! But as a player, the toughest place we played was Virginia [UVA]...it was so loud!"
David Rowe, Rutgers: "Syracuse. The sound [of the crowd] bounces off the roof."
Offensive linemen Moe Petrus, a center at UConn, and Jeremiah Warren, a tackle at USF, discussed life in the trenches in the Big East.
I asked Moe Petrus who the toughest player to block and the toughest defense in the Big East.
"The toughest guy for me to block I face in practice, Kendall Reyes (pictured)," he says as he pointed to his teammate, "He prepares me for the toughest guys in the league". He went on to say, "The toughest defense from last year, was West Virginia; they play that 3-4 and there is a guy always in my face."
Warren said, "All of them, they are so many great players in the Big East, every team is tough and has talented players up front."
Defensive backs David Rowe of Rutgers and Quentin Washington of USF discussed the toughest players to defend in the Big East.
Quentiin Washington said, "There are a lot of them, Tavon Austin is tough, he is so fast, and Mohammed Sanu, but there are so many great players."
David Rowe, "Tavon Austin, he is explosive!"
Football is full of mistakes and negative plays from the defensive and offensive side. How do these young men deal with them at the highest level of college football? David Rowe (pictured) and Quentin Washington shared some of their thoughts with me.
Quentin Washington on getting beat by a deep-ball: "My coaches always said, 'you have to have short term memory', you can't be thinking about making up for a mistake; that's when bad things happen."
David Rowe on allowing a big play: "There are 90 plays in a football game; you can't let [one] throw you off your game."
Moe Petrus and Jermemiah coached me up on how they deal with making a mistake on the o-line.
Moe Petrus: "You need to forget about the bad plays, or even the good ones! If you dwell on anything that happens, you are off your game."
Jeremiah Warren:"You need a short memory. If you start thinking about it, you get that quick sand effect; you need to play one play at a time."