Monday Q&A with Coach D'Onofrio

Read on to see what defensive coordinator Mark D'Onofrio is saying a few days after his unit turned in their best performance of the season.

On his thoughts on the VT game:
I was very happy. They did a really good job of playing together as a team. Our punter did a great job of dropping balls in there. The offense did a great job of controlling the clock. Those things helped us.

On creating three turnovers:
That was great. We want to take the ball away. We’ve done a good job of it. We’re second or third in the country in caused fumbles. That’s very important. Georgia Tech, we didn’t have any but we had three the last few weeks. That’s very important for us.

On Denzel Perryman being named a Butkus semi-finalist today:
It’s great. It speaks to his career, what he’s done. He’s gotten better every year. There were a lot of reasons for him to come back. It’s great for him and great for us.

On what he likes seeing the most:
One thing that doesn’t stand out in the stats, every week we’ve had less mental errors since the beginning of the season while playing more guys. We’re bringing young guys along. We’ve improved our depth and our execution of the scheme.

On UNC’s offense:
They’re the best team we’ve played on offense. It’ll be a great challenge for us.

On guys making the biggest improvements:
I’d probably be leaving people out. One guy who stands out is Kirby. It’s his first year starting. He missed six games as a freshman. His first game was at Chicago against Notre Dame. Sometimes you forget when guys are first time starters. He’s playing will and mike. His practice habits, the standard he’s setting, that’s been very encouraging.

On Tambu Fentress:
I love him. He’s been fun to coach. I’ve always challenged him since he was a young player to be more than just a special teams player. He’s tough, smart, and competitive and I told him to never take a back seat to anyone.

On who the best safety’s been:
Deon’s played consistent football all year. Those are plays he wasn’t making a year ago. He’s holding guys up, taking balls away. That’s fun as a coach, to see guys having success like that.

Related Story:

Complete analysis of the VT game

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