Q&A with Trimane Goddard

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. --- As the North Carolina defense shut down Virginia, perhaps no Tar Heel's performance was more impressive than that of Trimane Goddard. In the sophomore strong safety's first start, he "played extremely well," according to head coach John Bunting. Read and listen to what Goddard had to say in this Q&A with the media ...

Listen: TRIMANE GODDARD (7:31)

On the defensive coaching showing on the field -

"It shows we're buying in more and more and taking every detail the coaches give us and applying it on the field. "

What are your thoughts on going to Miami?

"I'm excited - I've never been to Miami ... I'm just excited going down there ...

You were recruited by a major Florida school, right?

"It was real close. I got it down to here, Virginia and Florida State - it was pretty close. I just talked to Coach Browning and he was the most down to earth coach I talked to out of all my recruiters so I came here."

What was your mindset at the beginning of the season when you learned you weren't starting?

"I wanted to start, but I knew there was another good player in front of me. So I didn't panic, knew it just wasn't my time and when it was I'd be ready to step up. ... I knew I'd still push him and he'd push me to make each other better."

What went through your mind when you found out you'd get your first start last weekend?

"I was just excited and didn't know what to think because I'd never started in college before. So that was a first for me and I just got ready for the game."

With Jacoby Watkins out, what's the secondary going to miss the most?

"He's probably our fastest guy in the secondary so that may take away a little speed, so it's going to hurt us some, but we still have Quinton Person and he's been playing pretty good. He'll be starting now and I'll just be moving in nickel more and Mahlon will playing more safety."

How do you gameplan for Miami's receivers?

"You have to slow them down, too, but if you play your technique you should be fine."

Your last time on the road wasn't pretty - how will this game be different?

"We're coming in with more confidence and we've got the blowout from Louisville out of our minds and don't want that to happen again. If you don't want that to happen again, you're going to try as hard as you can."

What did this defense do to raise its level of play and keep Virginia out of the endzone?

"We minimized the mental errors and just played together as a unit. ... Everybody was clicking together at once. ... I'm sure there are things we didn't do right and can improve on, but that was a great performance."

Looking forward to covering kicks with Devin Hester back there?

"Kickoffs are my favorite ... I've been doing that since my freshman [year] - just going in there and getting to hit somebody. I'm excited and ready for it. ... "

On Miami looking for revenge for last season -

"It's going to be different because they're not going to be sleeping on us or not ready to play because we upset them last year and a lot of people said that messed up their season - so I know they're going to be ready to come in and try to blow us out. And it's going to be at their place. So they're going to be ready for this game."

What do you enjoy about playing defense most?

"Just getting to hit people."

Coaching Bunting said he addressed the team about the revenge factor - what did he tell you?

"He told us to be ready ... just come out and be ready to play and he said if there was anyone afraid to let him know so he wouldn't bring them on the trip."

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