"I know the fans are loving how hard he is playing. When you see somebody play with that kind of passion and energy and enthusiasm… It inspires his teammates. It inspires the guys on the sidelines and the coaches. If I'm an offensive lineman or a tight end or a wide receiver and I know that our running backs are running like that, I'm going to block that much harder. He's just playing so well and I'm very proud of him."
On preventing Clemson from having any long sustained drives:
"Obviously, the one regret that we have is that one big play, but we felt like for the most part, we were really concerned that they were going to come into the football game and try to run the football. Not that they're Georgia Tech in scheme, but that they would try to come in and run the ball 45-50 times, play keep-away and keep our offense on the sidelines. I think in every football game, it's critical if you can make the other team try to beat you one-dimensionally. When we stopped the run and took away what they thought was the strength of their offense and try to make them beat us lefthanded, it was a good plan."
On outdueling Clemson on special teams:
"Our kids know how critically important those field position swings are. Every time the ball is kicked 50 or 60 yards on kickoffs or 35-45 yards on punts, it's a big play opportunity. It was big for our football team to get Da'Norris Searcy back. He had the one great return that he almost got back out to the 50-yard-line. And our coverage units did an excellent job. Zach Brown and some of the guys on punts did a great job covering Marcus Gilchrist.
"The kickoff coverage part of it – one of the guys, and we alluded to this in our team meeting on Sunday, was Hunter Furr. A lot of people don't realize how important some people's roles are, but [Clemson] tried a reverse, they took the ball to one sideline, flipped it in the air hoping that everybody would get sucked in on the sideline. Hunter's job, and he may not make any tackles all year long, but his job is to make sure that he keeps everything inside of him. He stayed on the other side of the field, leveraged those blockers and kept the ball from getting outside on the reverse and then the calvary came. It was a big play that you don't get much credit for, but you don't win games unless guys make plays like that."
On if the team prepares differently for rivalry games and road games:
"People ask all of the time, ‘Do you do anything different?' And you really truly don't. We've tried to pride ourselves as a football program that how we're going to play on Saturday is an absolute direct relation to how you practice and how you prepare that week. How you study, your execution, your focus and what happened five years ago, three years ago or two years ago… This sounds bad, but I don't even know when Carolina played Clemson the last time who won the game. To talk to your football team about things that happened when they weren't even in school doesn't make any sense. It doesn't mean anything to those kids. They want to look and say, ‘Who is the guy I'm playing, what is the scheme, what are we going to run and what's our approach to the attack?'
"They stay busy on the task at hand and when you go on the road, one thing that I do try to do is that I try to make road games near to the exact routine as home games, as far as the time that we get to the hotel, the time that we have dinner, when we have our meetings, when we have our walk-through and when we go over tests and tip sheets with them. So you try to keep a normal routine so that the players feel comfortable in that routine."
On playing Bryn Renner:
"The one regret that we have and what we would like to do before this season is over with is to get Bryn Renner into the game. I think it would be important not only for his growth and development as a quarterback, but the situation needs to be right and hopefully we'll get some of those."
On strength and conditioning coach Jeff Connors:
"I can say this with all honesty – we would not trade Jeff Connors for any strength and conditioning coach in the United States. Here's the best testimony about Jeff – for the most part, every single football player on our football team hates his guts until, as we have for three straight years, when we have the senior banquet and those seniors step up there and they talk about their experiences as Carolina football players.
"Emphatically, every single one of them seeks Jeff out and says, ‘I never would have become the football player that I am without Jeff Connors and what he's pushed me to do.' His job is one of the harder jobs in all of football coaching because he has to push kids to a limit that they would never push themselves. They would never go where he takes them, as far as the conditioning and the strength."
"I think, for the most part, we're going to be okay. Obviously, everybody is interested in Quan Sturdivant… He'll be a gametime decision but he's moving around and he's making some progress. It will be close."
'Butch Davis Live' airs Wednesday evenings on Tar Heel Sports Network affiliates.