“Plenty to learn from after looking at the film in all three phases of the game. We were fortunate to make the plays that we needed to to win the game. Give credit to our kids for continuing to believe in what we’re doing, continuing to believe in each other, and kept fighting hard, and kept playing hard, and finished it up at the end.”
On playing with confidence:
“I think it helps just the morale of your team, confidence if you want to use that word. I don’t think they’re lacking for confidence but I think it just is a boost that you didn’t play as well as you needed to play, and went on the road in the conference in the league, and you still found a way to win a football game. Again, it reemphasizes of you just keep believing in each other and you keep playing hard something good will happen.”
After looking at film did anybody grade out higher than maybe you would have thought?
“We had some guys on special teams that did some good things, that took care of their jobs. Offensively and defensively, we didn’t really single anybody out that played their best game. Des Lawrence, it was the most productive game he’s played, but there were some missed tackles and some other things that happened in the game. So, it’s hard to say a guy played really well if he didn’t play really well. Even though we had some guys that were very productive and did some good things, there was nobody individually who stood out and played well throughout the entire game.”
Did you see some progress in the punt return game?
“We had a little life. That was good. We were where we were supposed to be on everybody and we actually got a few opportunities. That guy punted the ball pretty well and a couple of them he hung out there really good. We showed a little bit of life; hopefully we’re waking up there.”
On Miami’s Duke Johnson:
“It could be a problem. It’s been a problem for everybody that’s played him. He’s really good. Lord willing, if he stays healthy, he’ll play for a while at the next level. The guy has all the tools, and he has in this league for a while. He’s had big games for a while now. We have a lot of respect for him. He has a big offensive line in front of him that will mash you. They do a great job.”
What difference did you see in your defense in the second half against Virginia?
“Just more energy. We fit our gaps better, especially in the running game. We were able to stop the run and make them have to throw a little more. And we did a better job overall with our energy level.”
Can you talk about Mack Hollins’ story?
“Mack can tell you that story better than I can. It’s a great story. Just for a kid who basically comes in unknown and proves to everyone that he’s not only worthy of a scholarship, but he’s a great teammate. He wants to contribute on everything, he wants to be on the field all the time. It’s not like you look at Mack and say well, he’s playing a bunch of reps at receiver now, so he’s not going to do as well on the kickoff team, he’s not going to give everything he has on the punt return team, but that’s not the case. When he’s out there playing, he’s going hard on every snap, and he’s going to give you everything he has. It’s a great story and it makes you always wonder, who is the next kid out there? Who is the next kid who maybe has fallen through the cracks and people don’t know about, and he’s going to come into your program and prove that he’s worthy?”
Two of your biggest producers are walk-ons. What does that say about your program?
“First of all, they have to prove their worth to their teammates, they earn the respect of their teammates, that’s always the very first thing. Then they have to earn the respect of the coaching staff and when they do that and prove they are ready to play, and can help this football team then they play. We have a pretty good record of guys coming in here and contributing to football teams. I think it says a lot, I really do. Those guys that have to come in and prove it from the start, there is a little bit more pride involved in a guy that came in here and showed everybody before he received anything.”
What have you seen from the Kaaya kid at quarterback?
“You just watch his film as he goes. He’s more poised every week; he’s very calm. I actually watched the TV copy of the Virginia Tech game and he handled every aspect of it just like a junior or senior. He wasn’t rattled by the noise or the hype. He did a nice job of handling the game, and managing the game, and managing the team. I think the kid has grown quite a bit over a short period of time.”
Is the Coastal Division as wide open as you thought it might be?
“It’s as wide open as it was the day we started the league actually. We said it was going to be wide open at the beginning and it has been. I think it’s probably been what everybody has expected.”
Can you put your finger on why there isn’t any clear separation?
“I’ll be honest with you, I haven’t spent anytime looking at it. I got enough problems, and looking at our day-to-day stuff every day here, I don’t have to time to spend a lot of time on other things.”
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