Coach Bagnoli at Media Day - 8/27/12

On finishing 5-5 last year...

"Maybe we overestimated everything after graduating 33 seniors and 11 all-league kids so we probably didn't do as good of a coaching job as we needed to do. We probably gave the kids too much, being so young. Starting from me on down, we 're much more prepared and we're much more focused.  We have a better gage of where we are and what our kids can and cannot do."

On the 2012 team's experience...

"We're a lot better suited this year than we were last year. Realistically, when you looked at our team last year, we graduated four starters on the offensive line, we graduated tight ends, we lost our starting wide receiver in preseason, there was a lot of graduations at linebacker and in the secondary and on defense. So again, we were trying to overcome 33 seniors, which is far and away the biggest senior class we've ever had. Now, we have eight starters returning, we have the whole offensive line - minus one - returning, we have the tight ends returning and we have wide receivers back. We just have so much more depth. So I think we're just at a much better point this year than we were last year."

On the offensive line and the loss of OL Greg Van Roten...

"He's a kid that I'm not sure it's fair to say we're going to replace him, but collectively we have much more experience. Four out of those five players last year were first-year starters. Now, we have kids with at least 10 games under their belt, if not more, and I think that gives you much better cohesion and allows you to do a lot more. So much of the offensive line is just getting used to each other, not only in the technical sense but also you have a feel because those guys have to work together so much. So, when everyone is new it becomes hard to orchestrate. We're further along this year after eight practices than we were last year."

On Senior QB Billy Ragone...

"Billy had a really good second year. Statistically, he had a much better second year throwing the ball. The thing we're looking for with Billy is just continuing to improve and as much as anything else, the consistency. He was kind of a microcosm of our team. When we were good, we were really good.  We went 80 yards in 1:12, but when we were bad we were also pretty bad.  I think the whole goal is to try to level things out and be a little more consistent and for the most part, the guys have done a good job so far."

On starting spots...

"We're only in practice No. 8 now, but the good news is - since we had an excessive amount of kids get hurt last year - they're coming back a little more mature than a typical freshman would be. Ade Jackson, Kevin Ijoma, Trevor Niemann, kids you might never heard of. They were all true freshman cover kids and they all got hurt and redshirted. They're all coming back into the fray. Evan Jackson at safety is coming back because he got hurt and redshirted. We've had (Conner) Scott at wide receiver and he's back. We were not only young last year, but we had so many injuries that we became even younger. So these kids have at least an expectation of what is going on in the collegiate level. A lot of those positions are up for grabs. I think we're going to be a deeper, more versatile football team because of that." 

On Brandon Copeland's leadership...

"The mere fact they elected a singular captain - which hasn't happened to us since 1997, I think - when you look at what the kids' perception of Cope is, it's overwhelmingly positive. There was no one even close to him. That just speaks volumes of him, not only on the football field where he is a terrific player, but the way he conducts himself in the locker room and meetings.  He's been terrific and he's gone out of his way to make sure everyone is comfortable and he's also brought the other seniors in to help."