SDSU Football coach Rocky Long received a two-year contract extension through 2017.
Jan. 31, 2013
SAN DIEGO -
San Diego State Football head coach Rocky Long
On what his time table was for how long he would stay at SDSU:
"I didn't have a time table then, and I don't have a time table now. You keep doing what you love to do for how long you're allowed to, or as long as you're physically able to. So I feel very fortunate that I get to do it for a few more years."
On his thought process of making the most of his opportunity to be the head coach at SDSU:
"When I got here (as defensive coordinator in 2009), I didn't think I'd be a head coach again. The opportunity arose and at the time, it seemed the better opportunity was to stay here instead of go with (former coach) Brady (Hoke). So far it's worked out that way. I feel really fortunate I have a job, No. 1, and it's something I like to do. That's pretty good too. And I have a contract to do it for a few more years, so it's a pretty good day."
On if he got a raise from his previous contract, or if he asked for one:
"No, I didn't get a raise. I didn't ask for one either. I feel very comfortable with my situation, so why change it."
On if his assistant coaches received raises:
"The assistant coaches are getting a raise, yes. I thought (athletic director) Jim Sterk was very kind to give them raises. In the economic climate we're in and the California State system we're in, our assistant coaches are not paid very well compared to most college staffs. (Sterk's) willingness to give them a raise was really nice on his part."
On how has the program grown in the last two years since he took over as head coach:
"I think it's grown in a lot of areas. I think we're able to recruit better now than we were four years ago. I think the players coming into our program realize how our program is run. So we lose some players along the way once they find out how hard our players work and how our players do things. But I think it translates on the field. If you recruit pretty good athletes that work hard, you're going to win some games."
On if his original five-year plan will change:
"Well the plan was within five years to be in a couple bowl games and win a conference championship. So I guess we're one year ahead of the plan. So now the plan is to try to move to the elite level. Try to be a top-25 team like our basketball teams are. And maybe if we have one of those really good football teams that get lucky to win enough games to be in an even bigger bowl game, that would be nice."
On what he thinks it will take to get the program to an elite level:
"I think you have to continue to recruit and improve your talent level. We have some really good players, but there are some weaknesses in our team where the talent level through recruiting could improve, so you match up better when you play the better teams on your schedule. Right now, we have some matchup problems when we play certain teams. If you can improve your talent level, keep you coaching staff together and the kids respond like they should, you have the chance to be a very special program eventually. I think it takes time to build one of those."
On how important it is to keep his assistant coaching staff in tact:
"I think it's really important. I think we all feel very fortunate that we're coaching here. It's a great place to live and it's a nice place to recruit to, but our coaches don't get paid very much when you compare us to the rest of the country. I think keeping our coaches here might be our biggest challenge."
On if he thought the program would stay in the Mountain West:
"I didn't know. What I heard and read was all I knew about what was going on. There were some advantages of maybe going to the Big East, especially financially. But as things dramatically changed over the course of time, if didn't seem like nearly as good of a deal to go to the Big East. And I think you always end up where you're supposed to be. I thought the competition level is exactly the same. Maybe the Mountain West is better, and I still believe that. The Big East might get more recognition and might get better coverage, but their football is no better than the Mountain West's football is, and it never has been. So our competition level hasn't changed. In fact, with the addition of a couple teams, the Mountain West conference has become a better football conference."
On how significant the contract extension was for recruiting:
"I feel the most fortunate because of that. When you expand your recruiting and expand your recruiting areas, and you compete against bigger-name schools, everything comes into focus. Several recruits would wonder, `How long is coach Long going to be there.' (Opposing schools) will use anything they can to their advantage. So it helps recruiting more than it actually helps me."
San Diego State Men's Basketball head coach Steve Fisher
On coach Long's contract extension:
"Rocky Long got a new contract extension, and it was well-deserved. Rocky has done a tremendous job. He continues to bring stability, growth and success to football and athletics in general at San Diego State. So I'm very happy for Rocky Long, his staff and his players. I think it was a wonderful decision."
San Diego State Women's Basketball head coach Beth Burns
On coach Long's contract extension:
"I couldn't be happier for Rocky and I couldn't be happier for San Diego State, because it continues to speak to this being a place you want to be and this being a place you can succeed at."