Post-Practice: Bunting on the first full practice

UNC head football coach, John Bunting, oversaw his first 105-man practice Saturday morning, with the upperclassmen in attendance.

Afterwards, he addressed the media, sharing his thoughts and answering questions:

Q: Well, what did you think?

A: "I think some guys are ready to go. I think there are some other guys that need to get more ready to go.

"It was exciting to be back out on this field. I got goose bumps all morning long watching these guys work. Some guys are anxious to get started here. Other guys are, but the younger guys just don't understand what it's all about.

Q: What have you seen from Ronald?

A: "Excellent. Excellent practice. Leadership-taking charge. Anxious. Sharp."

Q: Any position changes of note?

A: "Not that I know of, besides Brandon Russell. We're going to work him some at wide receiver to start."

Q: Why is that?

A: "I've got two excellent tailbacks that performed tremendously through the spring. They are our number one and number two tailbacks right now. They are alternating right now. There's not one, in my opinion, that is better than the other. I think we need to see if Brandon can help us at wide receiver."

Q: Did the fact that Brandon wasn't in spring practice facilitate this?

A: "Well, I never got to see him play running back. I saw two guys playing running back, and two bigger, bruising type runners-one with a little more perimeter speed to take it to the house and one more of a pounder. Brandon is someone who I think can help us a great deal, so I want the best 11 on the field. I think he belongs out there."

Q: Have you had players come to you through the summer or the last few weeks and say, "Coach, things really are different around here."? Have you gotten that from them?

Ready for action: Peppers, Bunting and Curry
A: "Well, I've had players say that throughout winter, spring, and summer. I think those that were involved in the summer program will tell you to a man that things are very, very different around here. There are still some discipline things-little details that will get you beat. Guys not bringing a play book to a meeting-how stupid is that? A guy was late for a meeting yesterday. How stupid was that? A guy was told he couldn't drive his car-to lock it up inside the stadium. He went out and drove his car. That's very dumb, and he's going to catch it."

Q: What are the ramifications of things like this?

A: "Severe consequences."

Q: Such as?

A: "First-time offfender, second-time offender, third-time offender-a third-time offender won't play."

Q: Do all those things you listed qualify as an offense-late, not bringing a play book…?

A: "That's one, yes absolutely."

Q: What about the search for a back-up quarterback?

A: "That's going to be an on-going experience throughout the whole training camp. I have no idea will notch up."

Q: Is that a little scary, given that Luke Huard is not in practice right now, and you have no one who has taken a college snap that is eligible to play this season?

A: "Same thing with the snapper for our punts, same thing with the tight end position, really. No one has taken any serious snaps. Same thing with most of these offensive linemen."

Q: What do you think of the younger offensive linemen [who will be playing this year]?

A: "I think they have made tremendous strides in the weight room and the conditioning with Coach Connors. Now they've got to get in the notebook and get with Coach Caldwell and Browning, and learn how to execute."

Q: Is it good for Woofter to get to go against Peppers every day?

A: "Oh my God, I would love to be Woofter. Wouldn't you? It makes him better every day, there is no doubt about it. Greg Woofter has really worked hard. He's a different person than when I first met him. He's done a great job in the weight room."

Q: With the freshmen practicing with the upperclassmen for the first time, did any of them show that they can compete at this level-that they are going to play?

A: "I saw some offensive linemen that I like in there-the Steven Bell's, the Arthur Smith's, the Drew Hunter's, and Jocques Dumas here on the defensive line.

Q: Would it be your preference to red-shirt the bulk of that class?

A: "Yes, if I was in that position. We'll see how that plays out. If I can, I will, but if I can't, I won't. We've got to find the best 11, put them on there, and have as much depth as we can, going into each game-guys we think can compete and play smart football."

Q: You mentioned in the spring some issues at tight end. How do you see that shaking out?

A: A: "Well, right now, Doug Brown has earned that position, and it's Zach Hilton's to take. Zach has worked really hard in the weight room, also. He perhaps has better ball skills, but Doug had a tremendous spring blocking. I think those two are going to work real hard to see who is the absolute starter, but I think they're both going to play."

Q: How much have you talked to Ronald about leadership?

A: "Twice-once when I first met him and right before we started training camp."

Q: What are you trying to get out of him?

A: "Within his personality, we're trying to get him to provide the best leadership he can. I want him to take charge. I want him to electrify that offense, and I want him to be in total control with confidence and show the confidence-be demanding within his personality."

Q: "Within his personality " would indicate that he's not that vocal of a guy.

A: "I saw vocal. I think Ronald's going to have a great year. If that means being more vocal, I think he's ready to handle that.

Q: Sims took a little break in the middle, sitting under the cooling cape. Is he OK?

A: "That's scary to me. We've barely cracked a sweat out here, and he's already underneath the ice bucket. I was a little disappointed. Maybe it was just a one-time thing. I'm glad we weren't playing Oklahoma today with full gear on and 1,000 degrees with 1,000 percent humidity. I was a little disappointed."

Q: Do you have any true freshmen at tailback who have impressed you enough that you think you can use Russell somewhere else? Do you need a third tailback?

A: "I like my third tailback-Michael Harris. I like him a lot. He came to work in the spring, and he came to work today."

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