What's led to the team's forcing of more turnovers?
"I'd say the defense understands, between last year and this year, where to line up and what's expected from us. I'd say we're also a lot faster than last year. Coach O'Brien stresses toughness and I think we're not at what's expected of us yet but we're on our way there. That's what has led to the turnovers: hustle and basically a new attitude."
How has the coaching staff prepared you guys to force more takeaways?
"We always do strip drills and fumble drills and stuff. But mostly I'd say just our drops in general between linebacker and secondary and knowing what routes are being run. You're just a step faster in every aspect of the game. It's just that one step that's the difference between getting a turnover and not getting it."
Was that game last year here a prime example of how more familiar you guys are this year with the coaching staff?
"We struggled and they kind of had their way with us. They do a lot of shifts and motions and everything and we had trouble lining up. This year I just think it's a lot simpler. We'll do our best and we'll do a lot of studying from film last year and we'll do our best to shut them down."
How are you feeling about opening ACC play?
"I can only speak for the defense, but I feel we're ready. Especially with the way we've started off the past two games. We need to learn how to finish in the fourth quarter, for sure, but the way we started off with high energy and everything, we'll be ready."
Where does Clemson rank as one of the tougher places you've had to play?
"I've played in almost all the ACC stadiums and I'd say they're the toughest, if not Florida STate. And their fans, they're wild. It's going to be tough."
How important is this game as you open ACC play?
"Every game is an important game and a win is a win but the game in the ACC, especially against a team in our division, this game is definitely a very big game."
Is it tough for the offensive line to have to adjust to a different quarterback every week?
"I think the offensive is used to Russell, it's good to have him back and we're more than welcome to have him."
How have things been progressing with the offensive line?
"Right now we have a pretty big rotation going on the offensive line. The defensive guys bring a lot of aggressiveness. I think right now we're trying to find the right five, the right rotation to make sure we're all on the same level of blocking. I think we're getting better every game and every practice."
Will the noise factor affect the offensive line?
"The noise always plays a factor. I've played in Death Valley before and so have a lot of the other linemen. It affects you as in not being able to hear the quarterback but it also raises your adrenalin having this huge crowd there and it can build you up. So there's negatives and positives to it."
You're the only senior on the field a lot on offense, in general can you talk about how this is a pretty young team?
"It's a pretty young team. Not a lot of experience but a lot of up-and-coming players and we got a lot of great talent on the team. A lot of new freshmen like George Bryan and T.J. Graham against William and Mary showed what they can do and they're very talented players."