Diaz Talks Notre Dame

Read on to see what defensive coordinator Manny Diaz is saying a few days before the Hurricanes take on Notre Dame.

On Standish Dobard’s transition to defensive line…

“The first thing is does he have the initial toughness. When 300 lb. men come and put their hands on you, how do you respond to that? It seems like he’s responded pretty well. When you get out there in the game it’s at a different speed. Like we do with all of our players, we will put him in a position to succeed.”

On how Notre Dame is 2-5 with so much talent…

“Their offensive video is not two and five. Their offensive video speaks as one of the top offenses in the country. Number one, they played a game that should have never been played. The game in Raleigh was a farce. They were playing in a lake. You can’t judge anything on that, so you throw that one away. For the rest of their games, they’ve all been very competitive games. They’ve all come down to the last possession, similar to ours, and they’ve putting up a truckload of points. Didn’t score quite as many in their last game, but they’ve shown that they have the danger. Very explosive passing offense. Their quarterback has a very strong arm. Really loves to push the ball down the field. They’ve done a nice job. They had some outstanding receivers last year that left and they’ve done a nice job of replacing those guys. They have some young guys that have really stepped up and filled some big shoes.”

On what the Miami-Notre Dame rivalry means to him and how he’s conveying that to the team…

“They’re being told that at Miami you get judged by whether you beat Notre Dame or not. If you don’t beat Notre Dame, it’s a failure. It’s a big deal. It’s a big thing in this University and in this town. If we are 12-0 or 0-12 and playing here, there or on the moon, Miami must beat Notre Dame. There have been great games throughout the years. Our players must understand that it’s fun to come to The U in recruiting, but you have to understand what made The U, ‘The U.’ Those battles that went both ways in the 80s are really what made The U, ‘The U.’”

On the feistiness at practice recently…

“Guys are competing. Ultimately what you’re trying to do is win every play. A game is one by 11 guys winning their individual play and then you stack a bunch winning plays on top of each other and usually if you do that you end up with more points at the end of the game. It’s like anything else, you deconstruct everything, break it down and get competitive and find a way to win whatever is in front of you at that moment.”

On getting defensive players back from injury for this week’s game…

“It’s good to have more guys that can play, some players that have made plays for us. It will help us a little bit with our depth. I felt like the last game, for the first time, we did not always play like Hurricanes. We had some guys that had been very violent and had been very physical all year that, for the first time, showed to not be. I think three games in 12 days with our limited numbers told on us a little bit. With the little break, the little nine-day rest that we’ve had and getting some guys back will give us a boost. Notre Dame will have no sympathy for us. It will be important that we reestablish our physical identity on Saturday.”


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