Cutcliffe Tuesday Quotes

Duke Head Coach David Cutcliffe met the media on Tuesday afternoon to discuss his team's strong start to the 2013 season, and the second game of the year against Memphis.

Duke Head Coach David Cutcliffe met the media on Tuesday afternoon to discuss his team's strong start to the 2013 season, and the second game of the year against Memphis. From the coaches' teleconference:

On today's preparation and practice:
"We had good work this morning because it was pretty hot and humid, which is certainly going to be the case when we get up to Memphis."

On Memphis:
"Memphis is a good football team. It's frustrating a little bit not to have a good look at them this year. Obviously, they have a young quarterback beat out a returning starter, so that tells you something about his capability. I've looked at him on high school tape; did a little read of him. Really the majority of their team returns. I think certainly the strength of their team will be their defensive front. A year ago, at times, they were difficult to deal with. They're certainly a year older and better. You can tell reading between the lines that they've done a good job there and they expect to be better. Their special teams play a year ago was really good. They finished high in Conference USA in just about every kicking category. They did lose their kickoff man and placekicker and snapper, but I think their return men are outstanding, and again a lot of the same guys back. It's going to be a different level of game and a different challenge. What we need to do is start fast and get the game under our belt and go in there and execute at a high level for 60 minutes because that's generally what it takes to win on the road."

On early season games:
"First games, you're getting back to the speed of the game, you're getting back to being on the ground a little bit more than you normally are because you hit the tail end of camp not getting a lot of live work. It takes a little while sometimes to get caught up in that regard."

On the challenges of a road game:
"If you go on the road, you have to find a way to take momentum away from the home team. They're in their environment, they're in their comfort zone. My focus is always on trying to quiet the crowd. We've really made a huge emphasis in that regard."

On Kelby Brown and Braxton Deaver: "Kelby told me he had to get a little feel of the game; getting comfortable. I thought it looked like Braxton was comfortable in the passing game. I think probably some of the physical stuff where it's constantly live, I think he has to get past that. And both of them have to find a way to gain confidence quickly in their knees. I think both of them did very, very well in that regard."

"I realized we're going to have to be extremely good blocking on the perimeter. We need to be more consistent in that regard. I thought we had everywhere on offense a few too many people that came off the blocks, that made tackles, that if we engaged a little longer, finished a little better, we could've finished with multiple big plays. We have to get to that point. Defensively, we did a lot of things well. We can't afford to let good athletes, good players get outside and get leverage. That's hurt us in the past and this is a team we're approaching this week that will definitely take that approach."


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