O'Brien: Pack Focused on Miami

RALEIGH, N.C. -- At today's press conference, NC State head coach Tom O'Brien discussed the upcoming game against Miami with the media.

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    Tom O'Brien

    "I haven't even had a discussion with my athletic director about anything. As I told my team, it's a waste of your breath to talk about it until you get there so our focus is playing Miami."

    "I certainly would [feel deserving of a bowl game], but we have to play a football game. Whether we are deserving or not is going to count on whether we can beat Miami or not."

    "[Jamelle Eugene] has done a great job... he and Andre Brown have become a great one-two punch for us. They kind of shuttle themselves in and out. They both can do a lot of different things. Jamelle is maybe a little shakier and Andre is maybe a little more powerful inside. [Jamelle] catches the ball out of the backfield, he does a great job. He picked up the blitz on Saturday that gave us our first deep throw to Jarvis Williams. He's been a very complete player for us. He's a great kid to be around. He loves the game of football, he's a great practice guy, and he's a great example to the young guys."

    "I said at the start of the season that we might be a better football team but have less wins than we did a year ago.... looking at the schedule before we started. That coupled with the injuries, didn't give us a chance for a while to get to where we wanted."

    "They've gotten to be a much better practice team. Our practice the last three weeks has been as good as anytime I've been around here... this Tuesday has to be better than last Tuesday because if it is then we are getting better."

    "That's the only way we are going to have a chance to win this week against this football team we are playing with the speed and athletes they are going to bring here."

    "My experience has been if you do it and work hard enough that you are going to find a way to win football games. If you're not, then you are not good enough and the only thing you can do is go out and recruit better players."

    "[Clem Johnson] is out... it's a huge loss for us. He finally got back and was playing. He was playing the best he's played all year on Saturday. We were getting the play out of that spot at safety that we wanted to get in week one but we didn't get until week 11. That will be a huge loss for us."

    "Bobby Floyd and Justin [Byers] handled the safety spot the second half and they will handle it the whole game. Both of them will play... maybe dictated by situations."

    "We made a big emphasis already that the season isn't over. All this work and everything we've done, to get to this point, it would be a shame to not go out and give your best effort and play the best you can on Saturday."

    "Anybody that touches the ball, and it's been that way for years, can score from anywhere on the football field. That's always a concern when you play this football team."

    "They play four-down, seven guys back we played against last year starting on defense. They actually have three starters who are backups, were beat out by young kids, freshman that are playing... they play lock-down man-to-man. They say come and beat us."

    "Our offense hasn't even spent two seconds looking at Georgia Tech [vs. Miami tape]. We have nothing in common with Georgia Tech. We are studying the Virginia's the Virginia Tech's, the Duke's... those people who look like us."

    "Willis has a chance, as I said before, to play Willie's defense and not our defense. Willie, when he gets free he makes a lot of plays but sometimes when he's not free he has a tendency... basically [not starting him a few games ago] was to tell him you're not going to play unless you do it our way. He's doing it more and more our way and I think that's helped our defense get better. It certainly has. There's a reason why we ask him to do certain things. There's a reason why we ask 10 other guys to do certain things on defense... Willie is a talented, young guy, but he's got some things that he could be a heckuva lot better at if he just does what he's asked to do all the time."

    "I think Russell Wilson [is deserving of All-ACC honors] for sure. I think Anthony Hill, the problem with him is he hasn't been healthy enough, but I don't know if there is another tight end in our conference that has been as good as he has. I think you have to give Nate Irving consideration but then again he's only played half the games. It's tough... I think all our guys, a lot of guys should make it but because of our record, where we've been, what we've done, and our injuries, I don't know. We may go through another year without anybody on the first team."

    "I think Teddy Larsen and John Bedics, especially a guy like Bedics who going into his senior year thought he had a chance to start at defensive tackle... moved to offense and made the sacrifice he did for this football team... he hasn't missed a play on offense. We rested him here and there."

    "Larsen, it's really hard to be a center in major college football and do the things he's done here... he certainly, I think in another year is going to make himself a draftable guy."


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