Locker Room Report -- Amato Meets the Media

<B>CHAPEL HILL, NC -- </b>Head Coach Chuck Amato met with the media following the 30-24 loss to North Carolina, and here is a sampler of what they had to say.

They signaled touchdown and then it wasn't a touchdown. Did they give you any explanation?
All I know is six points were taken off the board. If we had walked in we wouldn't have this, so let's move on.

What led to the lack of success in the red zone?
We've had a little bit of a difficult time the last two years it the red zone. You've got to give a little bit of credit to the other team when that happens. I have no idea what the statistics were. They are for losers, and I don't even care.

On the very last play, did you feel you didn't have many options with no timeouts and they took ten seconds off the clock?
Yea, because I thought if the play before was not good and the clock had stopped, I thought there would be more time on the clock. You might be able to do a couple of things because you had two downs.

The players said there were missed assignments in the red zone. Was that your thoughts?
It had something to do with it, I'm sure. I can't tell until I see the film. Right before the half there was a penalty. We were 5 of 6 in the red zone. We just didn't score touchdowns. We were kicking field goals, and we need seven points.

We can't continue to have a slow start. Sooner or later it's going to bite ya, and it did today.

T.A. was having hamstring problems. Did that limit how you could use him?
Yes he did. He had hamstring problems. Maddox went out with hamstring problems. Paulsen went out with an ankle injury, so two of our captains were on the sidelines.

With T.A., I just told him, 'if you feel able to, just let us know.'

You had success on the ground.
Yes we did. Especially Reggie [Davis], he's a big, bruising running back. He breaks a lot of tackles. We ran the ball pretty good, but we've got to score touchdowns.

What was the thoughts on accepting the penalty before their first touchdown?
We were thinking field goal, and that would have made the field goal a little longer.

#44 normally doesn't carry the ball a lot and he did today. Did that surprise you?
Yes. They made a fourth and one that was big, with that three point lead. He bounced it outside, and that was a big, big play for them.

The three turnovers we had in the second half, including the very last one. The first we were going in and fumbled the ball... it stopped a drive. Then a tipped pass that was run back to the 3-yard line that set up another score. Those things are really, really big.

We were going to punt the ball on fourth-and-six, and I said, 'what are we nuts?' We're in four down territory, and we need the football. It was a big play and the next play was even bigger that put us down around the 27-yard line.

But, great game and I'm sure you guys can now write your stories. You'll have a lot of fun with this.

All Jay and no Marcus?
He was doing pretty good, and we didn't feel like we wanted to upset anything. Our plan was to run the football at them and when T.A. went out we still felt comfortable because we really do feel like we've got a couple of good running backs.

T.A.'s special. We'd love to have him in there for 60 minutes. I told our coaches to get a count of his touches because he needs to touch it as frequently as possible.

Your defense had a tougher time than normal. What was the cause for that?
Again, give them credit. They have run the football on everybody they have played. You just check it. They ran the ball on Florida State, and they ran the ball on Virginia.

That daggone quarterback is good. Y'all know how good he is. He's good, and they made plays when they needed to. You just got to stop them. We had many opportunities to stop them, and we just didn't.

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