UNC-NCSU: John Bunting Quotes (w/audio)

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – North Carolina coach John Bunting spoke to reporters following the Tar Heels' 23-9 win over N.C. State on Saturday at Kenan Stadium. Read and listen to what he had to say.

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Opening remarks -

Well, I'm really excited about the way we played today for our fans, for our players and for our coaching staff, who has suffered a lot. I told them it would still be a lot of fun and as you can guess and as you have seen, it was. I'm really happy for them.

On the Gatorade bath –

Cold...very, very cold and shocking at first. And it's always a little too early for me. I'm a guy who wants to go down to 0:00. It means a lot to beat State, to win the last home game, to beat State three years in a row. I showed our team earlier in the week that despite the fact the season might be going bad, it's still great to beat our big rival.

I showed them this morning how it's been the last couple of years before we came over on the busses. Chris Allen did a terrific job of putting together about six or seven minutes of clips of how happy it was (to beat State). It closed with last year, how excited they were about beating them. I knew it would be the same. I wanted our kids to have that taste of success again. They earned it today and this resilient group was deserving of feeling good about themselves for a few hours tonight, staff included.

On not participating in the Old Well Walk today with his team –

I wanted the focus to be on the players. I decided not to participate in that. I wanted it to be just on the players and the seniors in particular.

On the post-game handshake –

I wished him luck and he wished me luck. And he said he really meant it. I said that I appreciated that. Chuck was one of the guys that gave me a call after the announcement. Of course I wrote him back a note thanking him for that.

On the defense not giving up a touchdown –

That's great to go through a game without giving up a touchdown. Give Marvin [Sanders] and the rest of the staff a lot of credit and the players kept playing. (N.C. State) ran for a lot of yards last week. [Toney] Baker in particular was hammering Clemson and we get after him pretty good today. I was really pleased with the way we got after the running back, particularly in the first half...Overall, what you love the most as a coach is the effort they continue to give, never got down, kept playing and made some plays.

That was really helpful to us to get off to that great start. It gave our kids a lot of confidence and it was able to carry on to the entire game.

I give everybody credit. I give Joe Dailey credit for managing that team. Some seniors played their last game at home. I won't forget some of the locker room experiences that I just went through with guys like Jesse Holley, Melik Brown, Brian Rackley, Larry Edwards, those guys. It was an emotional locker room in there.

On Barth's kick –

That was great to see him smack that one through. He's had a tremendous year all year. That thing came off his foot hard and high.

On the emotion of his last game coaching at Kenan Stadium –

I've got a great staff. There are some great coaches in that locker room of mine. Our players rallied. They wanted to keep playing. They like playing this great game of football. So I am going to give them all the credit. They deserve it. The circumstances are unfortunate, I hate it. But to the credit of the players and the coaches, they kept working.

On getting carried off the field –

I wasn't very comfortable with doing that. They tried to do it again, and I went into a fetal position on the field. It was like protestors (laughs). They are great, great kids and I am just so happy for them.

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