Scottie Montgomery (© James Guillroy)

Weekly press conference with coach Montgomery

GREENVILLE, N.C. – First-year East Carolina University Head Football Coach Scottie Montgomery addressed members of the media on Monday prior to this Saturday’s home game against Connecticut.

Opening Statement:

“I thought our guys played with effort and enthusiasm against Cincinnati. However, effort and enthusiasm without execution produced a failing result."

“Offensively, we are moving the ball up and down the field and had a great day from a yardage standpoint, but the name of the game is points per game. The turnovers are also having a direct impact on the scoreboard. I think Jimmy Williams is continuing to grow as a consistent playmaker and we are also seeing the benefit of moving James Summers to the running back position. He has helped our run game quite a bit."

“Defensively, we have to tackle better. There is no question that the tape showed this to be our greatest struggle. We are also struggling to generate any pass pressure and this put stress on our defensive coordinator to call more pressures, which in turn puts stress on our secondary in coverage. We were in a man coverage game plan so that is inexcusable. The explosive plays were the difference for them when you look at our defense"

“I thought we continued to make huge strides in special teams and have over the last couple of weeks. Joe Carter has emerged as a staple of our special teams and we are glad to see how he is competing every day.”

On UConn:

“Offensively, they are not the UConn I remember from a few years back where they get into 12 personnel and come downhill the whole time. They have added some nice pieces to the puzzle. Noel Thomas, Jr. is a fantastic player. He accounts for about 60-70 percent of their offense in the passing game. I think he has 70 or more receptions at this time of the year, which is very hard to do. Usually, guys have that many at the end of the season. He stands out on the field as much as anyone on their team. Their quarterback mainly distributes the football to him because he deserves to get it. The other guy I like a lot on their team is tight-end Alec Bloom. He doesn’t have a ton of receptions but his end line blocking gives them something a lot of teams would love to have,"

“Defensively, one of their impact players is Folorunso Fatukasi. He does more than just sack the quarterback – he dominates the line of scrimmage. Junior Joseph is another big-time impact player for their defense and Jamar Summers gives them size at the cornerback spot,"

On Frustrations in the Cincinnati Game:

“We thought we had our team in a really good spot coming into the game. The locker room was on fire beforehand and we came out and put together a really good first drive. It just didn’t end with a touchdown, which was frustrating,"

“One of the most frustrating points in the game was the penalty that negated an interception and that has happened two-straight weeks. As a coach, that is frustrating when you have guys doing exactly what you have coached them to do. That was a very telling time in the game,"

On The Team’s Goals At This Point In The Season:

“I have never put emphasis on a set number of wins. I want us to be the best football team we can and we have not done that in my opinion. My standards never change. We don’t want to just let things happen and say we will fix them later. Our team standard is to win at everything we do. We haven’t won on Saturdays and that is a clear reflection on what we do during the week. We have to continue to improve in that aspect.”

On Getting A Win To Turn Things Around:

“There is no question about it. Everyone in the stadium knows that at Cincinnati when we were driving the ball with about eight minutes to go, they knew what was about to happen. But the moment the ball hit the ground, there was an audible gasp connected not only to the situation but the person it happened to. That put our defense right back on the field and greatly lessened our chance to win the game. A win this week would go a long way in solving a lot of things.”

-ECU Athletics

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