Tuesday: John Bunting Quotes + Audio

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – North Carolina coach John Bunting met with the media on Tuesday at the Kenan Football Center. Here is the full audio from his weekly press conference along with some excerpts of the transcript…

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LISTEN (27:21)

Opening remarks:
"We all know what week it is, and it's fun. Maybe it comes at the right time for us. We had a couple of tough losses. One of my number one jobs this year is to get the team re-focused each and every week on the upcoming opponent, regardless of the outcome of the previous week. We've done a good job as staff of putting the last game behind us. We had a great practice last evening and I'm looking forward to today with our players. We got a lot of positive things out of the (Wisconsin) game, and we've got to accentuate those. We've got to keep working on correcting the errors so we can get back on track offensively where we want to be, which is running the football and throwing efficiently because we have a better down and distance to work with. We've got to get better on first down on offense, we need to continue to try to get better on defense and we know this week we'll be facing a different style of offensive in NC State. Special teams-wise we're going to have an unbelievable challenge. We all know the type of talent they have over in Raleigh, and they've got more speed on the field than we faced in the first two weeks, so we've got to do a terrific job accounting for that and preparing for that."

On the wide receivers:
"I know those kids as well as anybody does, and they certainly don't want to (drop balls). They're great kids, they work hard every day in practice, they've just got to get better. We've got to get that rhythm, we've got to snatch those balls. I think we've been doing too much body catching. We've also made a few plays. Derrele Mitchell has made some plays, Wallace Wright has made some plays. I'd like to see Jesse Holley have a breakout game here soon and catch the ball in those hands. I'd like to see Mike Mason do the same. Those are good players. I said earlier in the season they we could have an elite group there, but they haven't proved it yet. So I'm hoping that we can get that done this week."

On OL Garrett Reynolds playing as a true freshman:
"I think that's the hardest position to play right out of the box, that or quarterback. Those are special people that can do that. To Garrett Reynolds' credit, I think he played extremely well (against Wisconsin). I think he's got a bright future. He's extremely intense. When he popped in there for the one day that Skip Seagraves missed practice entirely, he went through the whole day without making a mental error or missed assignment. That shows you that he's a bright guy and is attentive to the details and he has a great future."

On the early struggles of the running game:
"We've got two new running backs in our system. Last year we ran the ball the best we have and we didn't have Ronnie (McGill) half the year. Jacque (Lewis) had a great season until he broke his foot, Chad Scott then jumped in, and Madison (Hedgecock) was ready to run the ball too. He was an effective runner for us. What we haven't gotten is the consistency from the running backs that I'd like to have in terms of knowing where to take the ball - the path of the ball, the design of the play. It got better last week, believe it or not, so I'm hopeful this week we'll be even better."

On the early struggles of the offense on first down:
"You want to be able to throw some on first down and you want to run on first down. I think being able to run on first down gives you a tremendous advantage. We've struggled both ways. What you don't want to have is penalties on first down - first and 15, first and 20 are hard to overcome."

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