Q: How's your camp going?
Bass: It's going great. It's a great opportunity— a blessing for me to be out here coming from where I came from. I'm definitely proud to be out here, a part of the Raiders.
Q: Does it seem fast for you with all these other guys?
Bass: I'm not going to say too fast. My experience at the East-West [Shrine Game] kind of got me ready for it and my training since January down in Bommarito, [Calif.] then going back to school. I just picked up my personal tempo up, just so when I get up here I can be ready to hang with these guys. I figured it was going to be a lot faster coming from a Division II school, but football is football. So, I'm ready just to maximize my opportunity.
Q: Will you really be able to tell how you're doing until training camp, in terms of really getting to cut loose and rush?
Bass: I get to tell every day. Coach [Terrell] Williams lets me know where I stand, as for every play, whether it was a good play or a bad play. Most of the time, he has my bad plays than my good, just so nobody will get content, and really in this industry you can't get content because there's millions of other people who would die to be in our shoes right now.
Q: It's mostly just a footwork thing? What's he looking at that he can see when it's a no contact kind of situation?
Bass: A lot really. Your get-offs, your effort, whether you run to the ball or not, leverage, your hand usage. When you got the pads on, obviously its physical, but when you take the pads off, you can see whether a player steps and shoots his hands right. You can see a player's leverage and hips, things like that. So there's a lot that go into this. Each practice is without pads on, it may just look like we're out there having fun playing football, but really we've being evaluated on everything we do.
Q: Does it matter to you which side you're on or are you more comfortable with one or the other?
Bass: No, it doesn't matter. At my school, I played left and right just depending on the strong side-weak side, so here they got me predominately a right end with my left hand down. Then nickel, me and Sio [Moore], as soon as Sio comes in, he starts right end and I go to the left end and put my right hand down. I'm just glad to be on the field, but its left or right.
Q: Is it hard to take in all this information that's coming in right now? It's just one weekend and last year some of the rookies preferred doing it as trying to drink from a fire hose. What do you guys prefer doing it this year?
Bass: It is a lot of information coming in, but once you focus on each scheme and each play at one time and just learn that play and it helps with the practices and then the walk-through and it's fairly easy, it's not like they're throwing a bunch of different plays at us. They're slowly walking us through it. They're showing us clips of previous teams and how they ran it, different teams in the league who run the same schemes. And we get out here and we do several walk-throughs and we walk through as individuals. It's not too bad.
Q: Did you play exclusively with your hand down as a pass rusher penetrating in college, was there ever times you dropped into coverage things they might ask you to do here at some point?
Bass: I was the primary hand-down-in-the-dirt defensive end and there were situations where I came out to take flare or where I had curls or flats and they let me stand up, but I could probably count on my hand how many times I did that.
Q: Do you expect to see some of that here?
Bass: Oh yeah, so far these past two days, I've been dropping a lot. I've been training a lot since January on that too because I didn't know if I was going to get picked up as a 3-4 outside linebacker or a 4-3 defensive end. So I wanted to be ready for both. But the good thing here, it's a 4-3 front and we have certain schemes that we run where the defensive end do the drops. So it's great.
Q: You mentioned the jump from Division II, ever any doubt in your mind that you could make the jump? Was there any doubt that you could make it to the next level?
Bass: No, I'm not going to say doubt. In my mind, I knew I could play and that's the mindset I believe everybody, if you want to make it to this level, you've got to have. The only doubt that I had was whether I was going to get the opportunity I thought I deserved, and right now I am blessed with that opportunity. So right now, I'm ready to make the most of it. All of the doubt is gone. I felt that I worked hard enough where I should have an opportunity and I'm thankful to have it.
Q: Before the draft, you think in terms where you might get picked, where was your outlook before the draft?
Bass: I spoke with several teams and they said they had me on their boards fifth to sixth. Fifth to sixth, I was definitely ready to get picked up, at the same time, I watched the draft for the past four or five years and I've seen guys that's supposed to go here and dropped all the way down here. And this year, you probably seen, they got picked up later than expected. I just wanted to get the chance to get picked up and be on a team. Worse case came worst and if I had to get picked up free agent or tryout, that's still an opportunity.
Q: How much contact did you have with the Raiders before they picked you?
Bass: Actually, the Raiders were the first team that came up to my college. I want to say it was our first scrimmage, so that was pretty cool. It was the first NFL team, so everybody at my campus was geeked about that. I had a formal interview with them at the Combine and I believe that was it.