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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    Athlete of the Week

    Editor’s note: The Arizona Daily Wildcat’s Ari Wasserman caught up with UA true freshman running back Keola Antolin after he rushed for 149 yards and three touchdowns in Arizona’s win over then-No. 25 California on Saturday. Arizona’s win over Cal put the Wildcats back in the driver’s seat in terms of qualifying for the team’s first bowl berth since 1998.

    Wildcat: You are the Wildcat’s Athlete of the Week after your big performance Saturday against the Golden Bears. How does that feel?
    Antolin: It feels good. I am just overwhelmed with everything right now. Everything is just coming at me really fast, and I haven’t had too much time to breathe.

    W: Is this the most attention you have ever had?
    A: Oh, definitely. It is the most attention I have ever had. In high school I was just chillin’ half the time and didn’t really worry about the media and stuff like that. But when I came to college, it’s just different.

    W: How did you do that on Saturday? Did you surprise yourself?
    A: I definitely surprised myself. I thought it was going to be like me sitting out having a great time, but when they called my number, I just went in and did my thing.

    W: Is it hard to come off the bench and be a contributor in the game?
    A: Not really because practice is like repetition, repetition, repetition, so when the game comes around it’s all natural to you, so it wasn’t that hard.

    W: Here is a tough question: Do you think you should be the starter after that game?
    A: Grigsby has been doing good the whole year, so I am just going to back him up.

    W: Does it bother you that head coach Mike Stoops mispronounces your name every time he refers to you?
    A: It doesn’t really bother me because everybody mispronounces it all the time. Ever since high school nobody could say my name.

    W: He takes it to a whole other level though. He says Antenolin.
    A: (Laughs) Yeah, that was pretty shocking.

    W: As far as ladies crawling around after the game, how did that go?
    A: I don’t even pay attention to that stuff. I just go home and sleep half the time. I was too beat up to do anything.

    W: Would you feel Saturday’s performance was the best you have had your entire football career?
    A: Oh definitely. It was like, overwhelming. It is college ball and the fans are crazy. Because in high school you have what, 1,000 people at a game, so when you come to college there are 40 or 50 thousand people out there. It was crazy.

    W: Do you hear the crowd once the game is going?
    A: Yeah, definitely. I could barely hear (quarterback) Willie (Tuitama) in the huddle.

    W: Does it bug you when people refer to you as short? (He is listed at 5-foot-8).
    A: Oh no, it doesn’t bother to me. People always ask, “”How could you do that when you are short?”” I don’t know. I just do it.

    W: Has a lineman ever passed gas when he bent over in front of you?
    A: (Laughs) Hopefully not. Thank God they haven’t done it yet.

    W: What is your favorite football team?
    A: I like the Chargers.

    W: Does it bug you they aren’t doing so hot?
    A: I like players on the team, like LT (LaDainian Tomlinson) and Darren Sproles is one of my heroes.

    W: Why, because he is short?
    A: (Laughs) Yeah, that’s why.

    W: Who is the best football team in the nation right now?
    A: Shoot, probably Texas. They are number one right now.

    W: Would you want to play them?
    A: Yeah, I would like to play Texas.

    W: What team did you root for growing up?
    A: Probably Hawaii.

    W: Was it hard to root for them since they mainly throw the ball in that offense?
    A: No, it is just because everyone in Hawaii loves Hawaii ball.

    W:What was it like growing up in Vegas?
    A: A lot different than it was in Hawaii. Vegas is really fast and when you go to Hawaii everything is slow.

    W: What is the craziest thing you ever did there?
    A: Don’t go there on New Years. It’s crazy over there.

    W: What would you do for a Klondike bar?
    A: (Laughs) Do a backflip.

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