ATLANTA — Here’s a Q&A with Washington safety Budda Baker at Peach Bowl Media Day on Thursday morning:
You have the responsibility of dealing with Jalen Hurts, who is a young quarterback, who is a freshman for Alabama who is a dual threat. Watching the film, what stands out about Jalen Hurts?
BUDDA BAKER: Speed, size. You know, if it’s not open, he’s going to run the ball and he’s a great runner. He’s fast. He has deceptive speed. So, you know, it’s going to be a lot of guys trying to tackle.
Q. What does that game mean to not only you guys as a team, but back home?
BUDDA BAKER: Back home, it means a lot. For us, it’s just one more game, and then we play a national championship. So you can’t have a lot of highs if you win this game because the next week, you’ll play the national championship.
Q. Obviously, you never want to lose a game, but is it almost like you were glad to be able to get that wakeup call against USC before it’s too late?
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BUDDA BAKER: Of course I’m not glad about losing, but I felt like it was good for us. We got smacked in the mouth. Then for everything we were saying was how are we going to respond. So after that game, you know, we had our talks and all that type of stuff and we were just ready for practice that next week.
Q. Have you seen much tape of the USC-Alabama game?
BUDDA BAKER: Yes. Watch a lot of college film, NFL film and all this type of stuff. (Co-defensive coordinator Jimmy Lake is) just trying to make me a better player. He loves Ronde Barber. He coached him and all that type of stuff.
Q. Do you see any similarities between your game and Ronde’s?
BUDDA BAKER: Yeah, of course. He can play any position. He can play safety, nickel, corner. And that’s how I feel like I can play. He’s smart. I feel like I’m smart and all that type of stuff. So I feel like there’s a good amount of comparison.
Q. Coach ever gotten you in touch with him, Ronde?
BUDDA BAKER: We met him before. So he came to a practice so we all met him, talked to him, asked questions and all that type of stuff.