This is a big game this week for a lot of reasons. Most importantly, because it's the next game and we need a win in the worst way. The off week couldn't have come at a better time, running in conjunction with fall break. Some guys spent a lot of time in the training room and we gave them a couple of off days last week to heal some bumps and bruises. I think that we might have a chance to get a couple of people back. A couple of people are still going to be missing, but we're going to get a couple back, so that's a good thing.
We're going to get ready to go to Atlanta and play against a very good football team that's coming off a huge win where they performed great. We're going to have to play a fine football game to put ourselves in position to win this one. We're going to have to take care of the football, we've got to be opportunistic and we have to tackle better. And a very-much overlooked part of the game is special teams and we have to play well in that aspect as well.
On the status of Cedric Dargan
I think there's an outside chance we could have Cedric Dargan back. And that is a good thing. He's been practicing in bits and pieces. We haven't thrown him in there for the whole deal yet, but we're going to go through the week and try and expand his practice reps and see if we can't somehow get him ready to go by Saturday. You go back and you look at our stats and you see what he did in one half of football (at Navy) and you sure could use that shot in the arm.
On the significance of this week's game against Georgia Tech
It's an ACC game and it's the next game on our schedule. We desperately need a win as we continue to build our program. We have a lot of people on our team and our staff with ties to that area and it would be a good win.
On coaching against his alma mater
I don't really have time to worry about it. There are some special people who have made (Georgia Tech) a really good place and I have a lot of good memories there. But what we're trying to do is build some memories here at Duke. That's what our focus is. It's not about the past. It's about where we are and where we're going.
I've have a lot of respect for Chan Gailey and the job he's done there. I think he's done a great job and they're playing really, really well. It tells you a lot about their team, when they bounced back from the week before. We've got a challenge on our hands, no doubt about it.
On last year's win over Georgia Tech
We were able to run the ball and we were able to gain some takeaways. I think that pretty much sums it up. That was the difference in the game.
On Tech's win over Maryland on Saturday
Tech played really well. They kept Maryland off-balance. And at the same time, they took care of the football and controlled the clock. They're a big-play passing team. (QB) Reggie (Ball) doesn't get sacked much and they throw the long ball. They have a couple of guys who can really go get it, especially Calvin Johnson, the freshman. They'll pound you and pound you with the run and then try and throw it over your head."
On defending a 6-4 receiver such as Calvin Johnson
Sometimes you might have to play some zone, put guys in front of him and put some guys over the top of him. And you have to try and rake his arms. He's 6-4 and he can jump. That's just a fact. But what we have to do is make it tough for him to get in position to catch the football and then we have to rake his arms and try and knock the ball out.