Tuesday Media Quotes

DURHAM, N.C. – Coach Ted Roof, sophomore defensive tackle Vince Oghobaase and junior wide receiver Eron Riley attended Duke's eighth weekly press conference Tuesday at the Yoh Football Center. The coach and players discussed Saturday's upcoming game against Florida State.

Duke Head Coach Ted Roof

On what the team has been focusing on:
"What we have learned is that when we execute, we're usually successful. We can't go 10 of 11 people doing what they're supposed to do on a certain play because when that happens many times there is a breakdown. The efficiency of our operation has to improve and we've been focusing a lot on execution."

On the running game:
"When we handed the ball off as opposed to sack yardage, as the season has progressed we've improved. But, we need to get the sacks out of that. Certainly it's an area that we'll keep pecking and pecking and see if there are some things we can do to help ourselves. I think there are. It's going to come back to execution; it's not scheme, it's how we execute."

On Eron Riley:
"He's a huge part of our team. There are a couple guys on each and every team that can make plays and he is a guy that makes big plays for us. I think he's leading the league in receiving touchdowns and yards per reception. We're talking about a guy that hits home runs. When you have guys like that on your team and with where we are in the building process, those guys have to play well in order to have a chance to win. We have to find ways to get him the ball and when we do get him the ball, he has to catch it and make plays for us."

On Riley's progress from last year to this year:
"He was kind of a secret in the ACC last year; he led the league in yards per reception. So, I expect this from him. We're not surprised by it."

On the defensive scheme for Saturday versus Florida State:
"Even though it's the same team, it's two distinctively different offenses. They do things with [Xavier] Lee that they don't do with [Drew] Weatherford and they do things with Weatherford that they don't do with Lee. Of course there is some common ground there. Based on the comments we've heard, I expect Lee to come off the bench at some point so we have to work on all of it, which is a pretty broad scope, but I think we'd be fools if we didn't."

On becoming healthier over the past two weeks:
"I think that when it comes to some of the normal course of the season grind and the toll that it takes on your body, yes, we'll take a relatively fresh football team to Tallahassee on Saturday night. I also think that as much may come from just a couple days mentally of refreshing and refocusing. I've seen a lot of energy and a lot of enthusiasm on the practice field this week."

Vince Oghobaase

On how the team spent the bye week:
"We just went back to fundamentals and correcting our mistakes on the field. This past week, we did a real good job of getting back to that and executing on offense, defense and special teams. We went over all the mistakes we had and corrected those. That was the big emphasis this week."

On the recent losses to starting defensive ends Ryan Radloff and Patrick Bailey: "Those have been some tough losses to our defensive line, but any team has adversity and other guys have to step up and fill in. We definitely have the guys to do that with Kenny Rucker and Greg Akimbi. They've stepped up for us in these games, and I don't think it's a drop-off at all."

On playing with a young defensive line:
"I really don't see it as a challenge. We're talented enough to play with any offensive line in the country. We've just go to cut down on our mental errors and execute."

On the positives he's seen from the revamped defensive front:
"I think we had a great pass rush against Virginia Tech last week compared to some of the other teams we played in the past. That was with the revamped front we have, so I think that's real good, and we'll be able to put a lot of pressure on the quarterback this week."

On the challenges Florida State's offense presents:
"They do like to pass the ball. Like I said, we have to rush the passer and get after it. They're going to big-on-big us and we've just got to get there. There's nothing more to it, we just have to rush the passer."

Eron Riley

On the relationship between him and quarterback Thaddeus Lewis:
"We have a good relationship. When he came on his official visit as a senior in high school, he immediately was a cool guy to be around as a friend on the football field. He's just a great guy and a good team player, so we have a great relationship. I think his development as a passer helped me a lot to become a better receiver. It goes 50-50, so I think it's pretty good."

On what he's learned from wide receiver Jomar Wright:
"I'm a smarter player overall and better at reading coverages because of Jomar. I also am better at knowing what's going on around me and why am I doing something rather than just going and doing it."

On how the team has utilized the extra time from having a week off:
"We've gotten a couple of players healthy and we used it to rest, but we also got a jump on Florida State. I think we used it to the best of our abilities."

On what challenges Florida State presents on the defensive side of the ball and how Duke's receivers have prepared for it:
"They play a really good man-to-man coverage and they have a fast defense that they're known for. As receivers, we just have to run good routes and make sure we know what we're doing it. We need to read coverages because a lot of our plays are based off of reading their coverages."

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