Monday PC Interviews

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. -- Inside Carolina's Monday press conference coverage includes quotes and audio from head coach Everett Withers, Bryn Renner and Dwight Jones.

Listen to Audio (15:40)

Opening comments:
"Coming out of Thursday night, there were spots we felt like we played well. Again, you don't want to turn the ball over going in but there were some things we felt we did well. We felt like the first half we were able to hang in there. We didn't particularly play well the beginning of the third quarter, but I do like the fact we continued to battle and just came up there short at the end.

"Everybody is going to ask about Gio. Gio had a mild concussion during the game. We held him out the remainder of the game. He did do some limited work in practice yesterday. Some non-contact work in practice yesterday. He will be evaluated today and we hope to have him back on the practice field tomorrow.

"So we're excited about the game this week, obviously another in-state opponent. Eight miles away, a rivalry. And I really think Duke's got a good football team that doesn't have a very good record right now. Coach Cutcliffe and his staff have done a great job with the program and we're going to have to play good because we know what kind of ballgame this is. This isn't about records or anything this about being eight miles away and trying to be the better team on Saturday."

On Bernard's health during and after the VT game:
"He was fine. Gio wanted to go back into the ballgame Thursday. He wanted to go back and play. We just couldn't do that. He was really anxious to get back on the field and we got him back out yesterday and he was fine yesterday and hopefully we'll have him back full speed Tuesday."

On Matt Merletti's potential return:
"That's hard to say right now. That's still up to our sports medicine staff and his progress. We won't know that for a while. I know he'd like to play."

On how the holiday changes the week:
"Nothing really special. We actually got an extra day by practicing yesterday, with a Thursday night game. So we'll have an extra day of work. We'll do our same Tuesday, Wednesday routine, basically move up our Thursday routine and give our kids until Thanksgiving afternoon and the Friday morning time to be with family and then we'll continue on Friday. So there's a little break in there on Thursday that we'll give our kids."

On if he's thought about the Duke game being his final home game:
"Not one bit."

On if he has talked with Bubba Cunningham about his future:
"We've had several conversations. Several."

How have those gone?

On his thoughts coming out of those conversations:
"I believe I'm a candidate."

Listen to Audio (6:27)

How are you feeling?
"I feel great. My body feels good. Mentally, we're good, and just want to move on and play a good Duke team this weekend."

How's Gio doing?
"He's doing well. He came out to practice last night, so that's good. We're looking forward to having him back."

On the Virginia Tech loss:
"I think we always show spurts of being a really good football team. We just really need to put it together. But definitely, we fought hard and I'm really proud of how we came back and showed some resiliency."

Listen to Audio (9:58)

How does it feel to cross the 1,000-yard barrier?
"It's good. It's kind of bittersweet. We lost, and like I've said before, I'd take the victory over a 1,000 yards every day. But at the same time, to become just the second receiver in UNC history to accomplish a 1,000 yards in a season is special. But I'm a team player, so I would have loved to have gone out there and beat Virginia Tech."

Have you spoken to Hakeem Nicks since breaking 1,000 yards?
"No, I haven't spoken to Hakeem in a while. I told him earlier in the season that I was going to break all of his records and he told me to go for it. I'll probably break some of his records but not all of them, and when I see him, he'll probably give me a hard time for not breaking all of them."

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