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January 2, 2011

Fiesta Bowl: Brent Venables BCS reaction

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Oklahoma defensive coordinator Brent Venables emerged from the Fiesta Bowl locker room beaming with pride as his defense didn't give up an offensive touchdown in OU's 48-20 Fiesta Bowl victory over UCONN and SoonerScoop.com's Carey Murdock was there to talk to him about the big win.

Brent, just your feelings winning a BCS Championship once again?
I'm incredibly proud of our guys. They deserved to go out this way. They've fought incredibly hard this year. Winning's not easy, let alone being a champion. Preparing and playing well with the stage and the climate, it's difficult. You can say what you want when it's all said and done. It's difficult to manage and our guys did a terrific job. We were very determined, we really prepared well and it really showed out there tonight.

Everybody's talked about UCONN and the disparity of being such a favorite, but it seemed like they really showed why they were conference champions tonight…
Whatever the point spread - what was it? 16 ? What did we win by? 20? We totally destroyed the spread. We recognized the competitiveness, the character, how well they were playing going into this game and we had great respect for the them and great respect for the process. You can't cheat the game. There's a certain way in which you play at a high level and you play at a championship level and if you cheat any part of the process - the mental investment, the emotional investment or the physical investment, you're going to get exposed. Our guys really bought into that and it showed out there tonight.

You also have a reason to tell Travis he needs to come back because he can't catch the football?
(Laughing) We were just, 30 seconds ago, we were just talking about it. He talked all week in our meeting our room that he was going to pick that route off and pick six it. The moment of truth came and went. The mouth of the south's got to put his foot in it. That's awesome. The out-of-season wouldn't be any fun if you had to tell him how great he was.

Did you hear anything on Ronnell?
I think he'll be fine in a week or so. It was kind of like Brody Eldridge, what he had on his deal. He'll be in a neck brace for I don't know how long.

But Pryce Macon comes in and allows you to continue to run your 50-front so you've just got to feel good for him, Jeremy Beal and all your veterans?
Yeah, it was a team effort and a workmanlike effort and a lot of different guys and bodies got out there and stepped up to the plate when they needed to and rose to the challenge. I'm really proud of Aaron Colvin as well. He came in for Jamell and did a terrific job. If you only could have been on the sideline to see his response in his face when it was his time. It made you feel very, very confident when he was going out there on the field.

You'll celebrate this tonight but do you think in the weeks to come you'll really appreciate how tonight sets you guys up for the spring and the year to come?
No question, or just what our guys achieved. These moments don't come. You look at all the programs out there across the country with great coaches and great players and they just don't happen very often. We've been incredibly fortunate. We've been spoiled as coaches and our team has, of being in these situations. Winning is even more difficult once you get on this stage and you just look at all those teams that are out.

It's nice too just to bring home that trophy for the first time after being in these games here?
It's been a while. To say that we're due is for lack of a better term.

Video by Eddie Radosevich

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