Q&A with Charlie Whitehurst
Coach Bowden said that the seniors have really done a good job this year of keeping things under control in regards to leadership and preventing over confidence. Can you comment on that?
Whitehurst: I think they have. I think that's what you have to have in order to keep your confidence high, but not too high. We all know that we haven't arrived yet and that there's no reason to think that we can take a game off or anything like that. The seniors have been instrumental in helping us stay grounded, and that's important.
Where do you fit into the leadership equation at this point? After all, you've had one of the most productive seasons of anybody on the team?
Whitehurst: I let the seniors do all of the talking to tell you the truth. I just like to go out there and play hard. The end of the game is when I start to open my mouth more and tell these guys that we aren't going to let up. Like at Georgia Tech, I think they responded to me then. But for now I'm letting all of the seniors do the talking for now.
Last season, you struggled a little bit against Maryland, how much have you matured since then?
Whitehurst: A lot actually. I think I've matured a great deal since that game. You know I've faced some good football teams since then. Going against Georgia was a good experience because we probably won't see a defense as good as that again. I think I've realized that your game has to work a little bit quicker against teams like this.
You mentioned to some of the reporters before this interview that having an off-week gives you time to heal some of the bumps and bruises of the season and that it came at a good time for this team. On the other hand, do you worry a little bit that this team may have lost some momentum having an off-week after winning three games in a row?
Whitehurst: Yeah, it's kind of a give and take. You get more healthy but at the same time you may lose it a little bit mentally- the emotion, motivation, and intensity. I think this team is mature enough to get that momentum back after a week off, but of course it's always somewhat of a concern since we won three games in a row before last week.
Three of your wide receivers are in top ten of the ACC in catches per game and in reception yardage per game. Is there any of those three that you feel like you are starting to make more of a connection with? Maybe a guy that you feel like you can always depend on to make a play?
Whitehurst: I think it all depends on the situation. I'm comfortable with all of those guys really. Youngblood seems like the guy you go to on 3rd and 5. Airese is the guy you go to on first down for the big play, and Hamilton is really a combination of two. I can't really say just yet that's there one guy in particular. It's more of a combination right now.
Talk about the Georgia Tech game two weeks ago and how good it felt to really come out and dominate that team on both sides of the ball.
Whitehurst: It felt good. I really think we played to our potential in that game. I won't say that we played perfect of course, but we played extremely well. I think if we go out and keep that same game plan together, we'll have the chance to win every week.
If you were to beat Maryland this week, does that just take the confidence level of this team to an entirely different level?
Whitehurst: We are really confident right now. When you are confident you feel like you can go out there and beat anybody, but yes a win over Maryland would certainly give us even more confidence throughout the rest of the season.
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