O'Brien: Injuries Tough On Defense

RALEIGH, NC -- Head coach Tom O'Brien met with the media on Monday afternoon to discuss the Pack's upcoming game against Cincinnati.

Tom O'Brien

"[Terrell Manning] will be operated on in the next two hours. We'll see where it goes from there. When they let me know I'll let you know. It's been a tough season to play defense. We lost a corner to start the year, we lost our captain and best defensive lineman. We lost our next best defensive lineman. We lost a backup middle linebacker, lost a corner. Now we've lost another linebacker."

"Dwayne Maddox has some experience and he's been around and he's going to have to step up and make plays for us."

"Anybody coming back would be a big boost to the defensive football team. I know that it's killing him that he's not able to practice yet going to Cincinnati to play but that's what it is. We're trying to get guys ready for Cincinnati but if that doesn't work we'll get them ready for Georgia Tech. It's week-to-week trying to get guys healthy."

"[Sylvester Crawford and Theo Rich] didn't execute the defense, and that was part of the problem we had, especially in the running game. They had their opportunity, but once again they start the year off on the scout team, they aren't getting coached and we're coaching them up on the sideline trying to get them into the game. It causes some headaches but as Bill Parcell says, it is what it is."

"I would tell you once I know exactly what it is. I told you, I'll tell you. I don't know. If I knew, I would let you know. I'll let you know tomorrow after [Terrell Manning's] surgery."

"The same skill guys are back. The quarterback is back, the receiver played a lot and made some plays against us. They have one new offensive lineman playing in there. Defensively, they have 10 of 11 starters back from a year ago. The difference is they've played for a year in their system. Now they are more into Coach Jones' style of play. They are much more aggressive up front on both sides of the ball. They've made big strides."

"Everything is condensed, everything is faster. You can't spend as much time on the field. You are still restricted by the 4-hour rule by the NCAA. It's the fine line between spending too much time on the field than being fresh and playing on a Thursday night. If you're a veteran team it's better."

"We had a Tuesday practice today, we'll have a Wednesday practice tomorrow and then on Wednesday morning we'll do a modified Thursday practice. We just give up Friday."

"I think Glennon has done better than I would have expected him to be at this point. When you complete 17 out of 20 and it's the second best completion percentage in school history only to Philip Rivers, who is the marquee marker here as far as quarterback goes. [Mike Glennon] had three incompletions, one was a throw away and the other two hit guys in the hands. From halftime of Wake Forest through now it's been, for a guy that's only played three games, it's been a pretty remarkable stretch. The good news is he can be better. He can be better than he is now because he works at it and he has the talent to be a better quarterback if we can protect him."

"I was surprised because it happened a little quicker. Having been through this, there are all those false rumors out there and back and forth. Commissioner Swofford said he was going to be proactive in this, told us that at both our spring meeting and summer meetings. To be a true Atlantic Coast Conference, now you've got some northern schools now that cover the northern states and you will be a Boston to Miami conference now. In the little bit that I've heard reported, maybe we're not done yet. As one AD said, it's a seismic situation out there for everybody. We'll see where it ends up."

"Those are two good schools and will be compatible with a lot of things both academically and they bring athletics to the table too."

"[Taylor Gentry], as always, has been the leader of the special team grouping. He does a great job, he's on every special team that we have. He takes all those. He's always been a good pass catcher. We've asked him to do some things in the running game blocking wise that we haven't asked him before and he's been able to handle those and do a great job. He's been very physical."

"Taylor and his brother had a great collision on the practice field this morning. He said he finally hit his brother because generally he takes it easy on him. He's worked hard, and I think as he continues to go he might have a chance to play at the next level."

"He picks the whole thing out, he's like the sheriff of the special teams. He makes sure everybody else does their job and he's on them to get down there. He makes them compete against each other to make plays."

"Tobais [Palmer] has been a real big surprise. His toughness and what he's done, we haven't had that in a wide receiver, to be able to do all those things he's been doing on special teams for us."


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