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In his words: Notre Dame QB talks on impressive victory

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For more on college football, follow Tom Davis via Twitter at www.twitter.com/Tom101010.

Rees blcks out distractions, throws for three scores

Sunday, October 6, 2013 - 10:13 pm

Notre Dame senior quarterback Tommy Rees threw for three touchdowns in leading the Fighting Irish to a 37-34 win over Arizona State on Saturday in Arlington, Texas.

He spoke with the media regarding a number of topics after the victory.

On dealing with criticism:

"I don't even know what you're talking about no, I'm just kidding. Being a quarterback at Notre Dame, it's one of the things that you kind of sign up for. But for me, like I said, I rely on my teammates first, coaches, family, the people that I care about, and I care about what they think. For me, it's just staying focused and staying within the people that matter.

"It wasn't all that tough. I tried not to pay attention to all the outside. Really just focused on what's going on within the program within my teammates, my coaches, family and that's who I play for.

"I really just stayed positive with them and just like another week for me. I have to get prepared and get ready to lead this team to victory."

On surviving until the run game got going late:

"I think we had some matches, so we could take advantage and our guys protected and made plays on the outside. Really (receivers TJ Jones, DaVaris Daniels, and Torii Hunter), all those guys ran routes well and got open for us; and (tight end Ben Koyack), really happy for him on his first town down.

"A lot of different guys contributed to the win tonight."

On winning this game:

"It's a big win for us. You know, to get right back on the right track heading into the bye week, the halfway point of the season, was kind of a game we understood the importance of, and we are really ready to go and had a great week of preparation. Like I said, proud of the way the team played."

On the offensive strategy:

"Just try to sustain some drives. We knew Arizona State had a really good offense and could put up some points. So limiting their opportunities to go out there and score ultimately helps our defense with ball control.

"Obviously running the ball helps with the clock and all that, but just sustaining drives. When you've got third and manageables, just making sure that you convert, which I thought we did a good job of, keeping their high-powered offense off the field."

On the performance of receiver TJ Jones:

"Oh, man, so happy for TJ. Him and I came in together four years ago, and you know, you can't say enough about how the kid has grown since he's been here.

"You know, first of all, tremendous player; but the way he's grown off the field, really being the leadership and everything he's gone through, had to grow up fast for his family, I'm so happy for him and all the success. It's not a surprise, he's a hard working and very talented player.

"He's such a smart football player. I think that's one of the things that all good receivers have is they understand coverage. They understand leverage and how to run routes. TJ's best asset is how well he understands defenders are playing him, and then he runs routes based off of that.

"You know, a guy like that I can trust and count on being on the same page. He obviously catches everything and does a great job."

On rebounding mentally from an interception:

"It's going to happen and obviously you want to limit those mistakes, and have got to take accountability for that. But I've got a hundred of my teammates and brothers counting on me, and there's never a moment to get down. Got to get right back out there and find a way to move the ball on the field, which we did."

On playing at AT&T Stadium:

"Awesome. You know, the stadium is obviously an unbelievable venue, and you can really see the pull that Notre Dame has nationally. You come down here and it's like playing a home game. It's loud for you, and that's a special thing about Notre Dame."