Jeff Monken Press Conference Quotes: RiceArmy West Point football head coach Jeff Monken met with members of the local media on Tuesday afternoon for his weekly press conference inside Nowak Auditorium. The Black Knights welcome Rice on Friday at 6 p.m. for the 2019 season opener. That contest will be carried live on CBS Sports Network with Ben Holden, Ross Tucker and Tina Cervasio on the call.

(Ref.: Opening Statement)
"Good afternoon everybody. It's hard to believe the football season is here already. Time just flies, I guess they say, when you're having fun. It seems like just yesterday we were playing in that bowl game and I had such an enjoyable season with that senior class that had gone 2-10 as freshmen. To have that kind of season that they had last year was a lot of fun and I'm really proud of them. It set a bar for this program and for this year's team to have to do something to live up to that or match it. For us, the challenge is to try and be better. That's all we've tried to do over the course of the spring and preseason camp. Try to get better as a football team and improve. I think our guys have worked really hard and we've got a tremendous challenge on Friday night with a very talented Rice team. They've got a bunch of guys that are now going to be playing for them as graduate transfers that had tremendous careers at the schools that they came from. It reminds me of our 2016 team in that they play a bunch of freshmen, guys that now have starting experience, who played on a lot of special teams, got offensive and defensive snaps and are now going to be veteran upperclassmen. It's going to be a real challenge for us. We know what a challenge this is going to be, and we are excited about the season and just trying to take the first step and give us the best chance in the opening game.

(Ref.: On if the team is ready for the season opener on Friday)
"I mean, am I ready? I don't know, I guess at this point, three days away, I'm agonizing about all the things that we haven't quite gotten down perfect or haven't had a chance to practice. Maybe the situational things like special teams, certain situations with time on the clock, or overtime periods. Just all those things that might come up in a game. Having to throw a Hail Mary pass, having to defend a Hail Mary pass, everything. There's a lot of stuff, it's a complex game, there's a lot to prepare for and when you say ready, I mean I guess at this point, I'm crossing my fingers hoping that we just covered everything that we possibly could leading into the opener. Read more.

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