Audio: Amato Talks Spring Football

RALEIGH, NC -- NC State head coach Chuck Amato met with the media today to discuss spring practice. Here is a sampler of what he had to say.

Chuck Amato (48:05)

"Marcus has been doing good. He's better than what he was when he finished. That's the way it should be."

"He's really taken the approach of putting in the time on his own. He puts in a lot of time of his own studying the game."

"There's no question who the quarterback is."

"Playing time I don't know, but we're going to find out what [Justin Burke] can do. That's why we signed him. There's no doubt. I tell the whole team this. Your spring practice is now. We've signed some awfully good freshmen at all positions. Their spring practice happens in two-a-days."

"Darrell has really, really worked hard on the routes and technique. He's seen what it's like to get the ball in the open field and let your skill take over. It's kind of like returning punts and kickoffs. He's responded really well."

"He's fast, he can go deep, he can do so many things."

"The inside people are all there, plus a couple of redshirts. That's going to make for a real good situation."

"John Amanchukwu, he's an awfully good athlete. He's awfully fast for that big and he's probably one of the strongest kids in the weight room. Experienced... he's really worked hard."

"Pat Lowery has really taken on a [leadership role]."

"We know what we want to do. The kids are familiar with what we are doing on both sides of the football."

"[Reggie Davis] is on the field. There's a chance to get on the field. He's a big, tough, sure-handed player that we can do a lot of things with."

"That's one of the biggest things I've seen with these young men. Everybody wants to be the hero, but they've shown a lot of unselfishness."

"We play in the toughest conference in America. BCS opponents? Florida State, Virginia Tech, Boston College, Miami, Clemson... you're talking about a league. Yea, we've got it real easy."

"Willie Young... he came to us last fall after talking to Manny before the season started. Manny told him, from what I hear, 'you ought to go ask coach Amato to redshirt you. Especially since I wish I had been redshirted.' He walked in and said, 'Hey, how about redshirting me?'

"He's a youngster that has got great tools. He can be a real, real, real good pass rusher. He plays the run pretty tough too."

"Littleton Wright... [is] so relentless."

"Quinton Brown, who we redshirted last year, is really not ready yet but he's shown a lot more than we thought he might at this point. He's probably more of a physical player than he is a speed player."

"I'm not going to play that game. When you make a decision... you have a choice, you have a decision, you have consequences. Go on forward."

"As I said in Mario's conference here a couple of months ago, as a father and a coach, I hate to hear young men, and I didn't hear Mario say it, that I've done everything I can in college. No you haven't son. You haven't got your degree. That's why you went to college, to get a degree."

"All we can do is talk to them and give them advice and hope for the best. Really hope for the best. We're going about our business like they all graduated. Their eligibility is up and we're going on. Now that hurts because we expected to have them, but let's go forward."

"The five that are working up there with that first group, they are doing a pretty good job. They probably have got more pep and vigor than I've seen in a group there. They are pretty tight."

"You've got Leroy [Harris] in the middle, who is an outstanding football player. He really, really is. Leroy could play defense, he is so athletic. The tackles, you've got [James] Newby, who has been starting for the last two years and then Jon Holt who played I believe every snap but four against Virginia Tech when we played them up there two years ago because of an injury to Morris. You go to guard and you have Heppe who started at the beginning of the season until he got hurt, and the other guy, Crouch played sixty-something snaps in the bowl game. Boy is he... I think he's going to be something special. That young man there... he's another youngster that could play defense because he's that athletic."

"He really has taken over. He's really trying to do that in a very positive way. They are hanging with each other, that's the thing I always look at. [Tank Tyler] is the leader and there are a bunch of little ducklings chasing him down the road."

"Geron James is healthy, and boy he's... we felt all along that he had a chance to be something good. He's a tall kid that can run and can catch."

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