On Wednesday, The Bootleg caught up with defensive backs Barry Browning and Delano Howell to get their take on the upcoming matchup. Browning, the Cardinal’s starting cornerback alongside Johnson Bademosi, did not play last weekend against UCLA due to back spasms; however, he said that there are no lingering effects from the injury, and head coach David Shaw expects him to return at full strength this weekend.
The Bootleg: Were you disappointed with the team’s performance against the pass last weekend?
Barry Browning: No. They kept everything underneath, so they didn’t get any shots on us deep at all. Coach always says to play top down, so they can’t put it in the end zone.
Delano Howell: We definitely have things to work on, but a win is a win. We celebrate all victories.
Is the focus for Colorado on defending the run or the pass?
BB: I think it’s just to do what we do and make sure we contain and come downhill and play with leverage.
DH: They have a great running back and they have some great receivers as well. We’re going to defend both.
Has it been more difficult to prepare for Colorado since they’re new in the conference this year?
BB: No. They give a bunch of indicators like most teams do. It’s basic preparation.
DH: We’re going to prepare for them just like any other team. We have a lot of respect for them—they’re a really talented team and we look forward to playing them.
Do you think it’s positive or negative that you’re facing some of the conference’s stronger quarterbacks on the late end of your schedule?
BB: I feel like we can’t underestimate any quarterback that we go up against, week in and week out. They all have a decent arm, enough to beat us as a secondary. If we cheat on anything, they can take advantage of it. They’re D-I athletes as well.
DH: I think it’s a positive, but I feel like there are strong quarterbacks all throughout the schedule. I feel like we’ve faced some quarterbacks that are good already, and we’re going to face some really good quarterbacks later on as well.
Was there a big difference in crowd noise in the last game than from what was there in previous seasons?
BB: Yes. It was a sold-out crowd, so the crowd was into it. I felt like the student section was pretty pumped. It was pretty exciting.
DH: Oh yes, most definitely. It’s been awesome, because a lot of the fans are coming out and showing a lot of support. We definitely appreciate our fans.
Do you feel like you have a bigger home-field advantage now than you’ve had in past years?
BB: Yes. I feel like with most teams that are coming in, we have an X on our chest. Most teams that come in want to beat us, to surprise us, but I feel like we’re ready and that we have a home-field advantage.
DH: Most definitely, because our fans are coming out and supporting us, and we love it.
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