Army senior quarterback Trent Steelman spent about 15 minutes with Times Herald-Record reporters Kevin Gleason and Sal Interdonato Tuesday to discuss his team’s 42-7 loss at San Diego State.
Steelman struggled, turning the ball over three times and was held to three rushing yards. Here are some highlights from the conversation:
On how he’s feeling a few days after the game: “It’s hard coming off that game especially when you are a senior and you expect more out of yourself. It’s been difficult just being able to get past this one just because I felt just as individual and leader of the team that I let them down most of all and that’s what has pretty much been eating me alive and keeping me up.”
On if he was trying to do a little bit more in the game: “That’s just always been a part of my nature to go out there and play the best I can and try to do the best I can. Coach always talks about it and I’ve noticed over the years that I get a “heroic” syndrome to where I try to do too much because I want the team to win so bad and it gets me in trouble sometimes. It’s still not an excuse for the way I played and for the performance we had on Saturday. It’s behind us now.”
On turning the game into a positive: “There’s a lot of good things that we took away from that film. In our triple-option reads, we only misses one read. We went into watching film just trying to take away the positives. We didn’t look back because we knew what we did wrong and we knew what we had to correct in order to be a better team this Saturday.”
On how much expectations for the team this season played into what happened Saturday: “I’d be lying if I said it (expectations) didn’t have anything to do with it. Anytime, you put so much emphasis on a senior class or just the game of football in general, there’s always going to be expectations. We came into the offseason with high head, knowing what we had to get done in order to successful this year and pretty much stating that we were. That’s pretty much still available. Saturday was a definite step back but it’s one game and you can’t dwell on one game because there are 11 more to play. For now, we just have to forward and prove to be the team that we know we are.
On if he looked to anyone to talk about the game: My dad and my brothers are always big when it comes to talking football because they brought me up on football. They’ve been my mentor and my teacher since day one. They are always there for me. After the game, I felt badly. I didn’t want to talk to anybody. I didn’t see anybody. I just kind of went back to my room and tried to sleep it off. It has been a hard couple of days just trying to get over it and trying to get back in right mind-set to come and out and compete on Saturday.
On where he’s at mentally: “I’m pretty good right now. Yesterday I went back and watched the film as a whole and that helped me get over it a lot. It starts with me. I’m the one who came out and performed like I did. At the same time, they (his teammates) are going to look to me now more than ever because of what we went through and the adversity that we hit. I got to be that stronghold. Right now, I’m doing pretty well. I know what I have to get done in order to put the team in the best position to win Saturday. I’m going to come out and play my best and I’ve going to give it everything I have like I do every Saturday. ”
On the snap issues (three fumbles from center): “Any time there is a fumbled snap, it’s always going to come back to me. It was just one of those things. I really can’t explain it along with a long of other things that happened Saturday. Everybody has a bad game and mine happened to come at possibly one of the worst times, which is starting off my senior season.”
On letting the burden of the loss go by Saturday: “Any time you step into a huddle, no matter what Divison I school it is you have a lot on your plate and you carry a heavy burden. I’ve been stuck in that role since day one I’ve been here. I’ve learned to accept it and I’ve learned how to get through it. Saturday is no different. It’s another football game. It’s another chance to get back at our team goals.”
On Saturday’s game being a pivotal moment in his career: “It’s definitely a deciding moment in my career here. Because I’ve been here so long, you can easily point out the flaws I’ve had in each of the game. You can say that’s one of his worse or that’s one of his best. I think that’s why it (Saturday’s game) just stuck out so bad. It’s safe to say that’s ideally the worst game I’ve played since I’ve been here. I’m find with it. I’m OK with it. But at the same time, I’m learning from it. It’s still a learning process. I’m learning something new every day and this is definitely one of them.”
For more on Army football, follow me on Twitter @salinterdonato