Blackman: Trestman Keeps Them Guessing

Sophomore Darrell Blackman is the starting tailback for the Wolfpack and has scored NC State's lone touchdown of the 2005 season. Blackman spoke with Pack Pride about starting, special teams, and the Wolfpack offense after practice.


Darrell Blackman Profile

Darrell Blackman (4:57)

You're entering your second game as the starting tailback. How do you think you performed in the opener?
I think I played pretty good. I picked up on most of the blocking assignments that I had and I think I ran the ball well for the first thing. There were a few minor things I did wrong... not holding the ball high and tight, probably reading the wrong holes sometimes. Overall, I think I did pretty good helping my team move the ball down the field successfully.

After watching the film, how do you think you performed blocking?
I'd probably give myself a B- or just a B. In the first quarter I picked up some hard blocking assignments that kept some drives alive. It helped us move the ball down into scoring position.

I just try to concentrate on where my man goes and learn who the offensive line is [blocking].

Talk about how coach Trestman uses you to create matchup problems:
I kind of like that... I like that situation. Being put in a situation where it's a matchup against a bigger body because they can't key up on the passing game or just the running game. Coach Trestman loves putting other teams in that position, just to keep them on their toes.. to keep them guessing. He doesn't like to be predictable.

I like that. That's another chance for me to get on the field and help my team out... just create problems for the other teams. That's another chance to get the ball in my hands and try and make something good happen for my team.

Do you think that's probably the biggest difference from last year? The way he's trying to create matchup problems?
Yes, because he always comes in with a different gameplan and always different situations that he's thinking of... what can help us. Last year it was we'd just work on what we did wrong. We work on what we do wrong, but at the same time he comes in and tries to bring something new to the table and install in the gameplan.

What's the difference between being a punt returner and kick returner?
You've got to be able to make the right decision at the right time. Just like my one mental mistake, it can change the whole game... it can change stuff around just that fast.

You just have got to be mentally prepared and whatever is coming at you. Those guys are coming fast so you have to be on your toes. The main thing is just get up field and find a hole as fast as you can. If you dance around they are closing on you quick. My biggest thing is just getting straight up field and watch the blocking.

Thoughts on the punt returning blunder against Virginia Tech:

Yea, I just lost focus after the punt... we practice the ten-yard rule and for some reason I forgot where I was on the field, and I backed up and fair-caught the ball.

It's just something that I've been working on since then in practice. So when it's kicked over my head we'll start from there. If it goes in the endzone we'll go from there.

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