Aug. 12, 2003
KENOSHA, Wis. -
Another cloudy sky hung above the practice field as the Northwestern football team completed day five at Camp Kenosha at the University of Wisconsin-Parkside. After focusing primarily on special teams in the early stages of practice, the wide receivers and defensive backs went toe-to-toe in a highly spirited one-on-one drill at the midway point of the practice session.
After completing a number of passes early in the competition, the wide receivers started struggling to find any separation from the stingy defensive backs. With the entire team looking on, quarterback Brett Basanez delivered a strike to Brandon Horn, but Horn was stopped inches from the goal line by cornerback Jeff Backes. Backes' stand salvaged a 10-10 tie for the black jerseys.
Basanez, who started nine games, including three on a broken left leg he suffered against Minnesota, has looked stellar thus far in camp and sat down with NUsports.com after today's practice to discuss the upcoming season.
NUsports.com: What improvements have you seen with the offense thus far?
Basanez: "Definitely our timing. Our timing has been much better. We are starting to hit wide receivers coming out of the break a little bit better. We're starting to pick up blitzes much better. We are getting more comfortable with making our calls. I think we'll be a really good offensive team."
NUsports.com: How has your approach changed from last year, when you had to compete for the starting position, to this season where you come in as the number one quarterback?
Basanez: "I'm not really doing anything different. I've been watching as much film as last year trying to get better every day. We've got a great backup quarterback in Alexander Webb. He wants to start and he's been pushing me every single day. I have to continue to get better. I can't think of it as my spot."
NUsports.com: What is the best part about being up at Camp Kenosha?
Basanez: "Just getting out here and playing, getting a feel for each other. Taking everything else out of your mind and just focusing on football. We get to play against a good defense every day. With Pat Durr back they are much better. Now we've got the pads on we're ready to get it going."
NUsports.com: What is the feeling going to be in the locker room before the Kansas game?
Basanez: "I just can't wait to get out there and play. We've put in so much hard work in the offseason. We can't wait to get out there and play someone else, beat up on someone other than ourselves."
NUsports.com: Pat Durr says the food here at Camp Kenosha is great. What is your favorite meal?
Basanez: "The steak. Definitely the steak."
ROSTER UPDATE: Freshman Eddie Simpson was moved to safety from linebacker ... Redshirt freshman Joseph Ferguson moved from quarterback to wide receiver ... Andrew Davis has been moved from wide receiver to quarterback ... Linebacker Tony Greazel has decided to leave the team.