Part I (12:16)
Part II (11:49)
Part III (10:54)
Opening Remarks -
"The players last night got back to start the second semester and that was an awesome opportunity to not only get to talk to them a little bit more but to also introduce the five coaches that we've hired.
"It's a little bit frustrating from Dec. 18 until this coming Sunday as a new head coach because you want to hit the ground running. You want to get out on the road and get in the homes and build relationships with the players you're trying to recruit, but we're still in a dead period. ...
"I think we're getting great responses from both in the state as well as outside the state. ... The responses that we're getting verbally over the phone about guys that are excited about the next four weekends as far as recruiting is concerned should make for a very good recruiting class."
On defensive coordinator Chuck Pagano -
"... There are several dynamic, great things about Chuck. One, he's got an unbelievable, diverse background in a variety of defensive schemes, he's been around me a lot so we think a lot alike about style, schemes, types of athletes. But having said that, I like the fact that he's been around a lot of people other than myself. He's going to bring some fresh ideas. ... What they were able to accomplish [at Oakland], to finish first in the NFL in pass defense, I think that shows an awful lot of character and great traits with Chuck."
On offensive line coach Sam Pittman -
"He's someone that I didn't have a working relationship with, but as I polled guys in the NFL that I had a tremendous amount of respect for and I started researching, I called a couple guys I know and said give me the names of 3-4 guys that you have a lot of respect for ... and of the four guys I called, three said Sam's name the first or second name out of their mouths. They said this guy is phenomenal teacher, a great recruiter. And when you look at what they accomplished at Northern Illinois, they ran the football against just about everybody they played ... he's an excellent coach, he's got a lot of passion and energy and I'm thrilled to have him here."
On tight end/h-back coach Steve Hagen -
"I've got a great working relationship with him, I know what he brings to the table and one of the things that's a real strength of Steve's is that he's coached just about every conceivable position offensively. He's been a WR coach, RB coach, QB coach, offensive coordinator, TE coach, he's done it all. And when you're building a staff, you want guys that will bring ideas - that they're not just a master of one thing and don't have a clue about what else is going on."
On wide receivers coach Charlie Williams -
"He's another guy that I have familiarity with because we worked together at the University of Miami ... He got the opportunity to coach for Tony Dungy with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for several years which was an awesome opportunity that allowed him to grow and get to the next level. I have such huge regard for Tony Dungy not only as a football coach, but as a man. ... Charlie's been a very good football coach, he's an excellent recruiter."
On recruiting coordinator, associate head coach and defensive line coach John Blake -
"I've known John longer than anyone else on this staff. ... I coached him in high school, watched him play at Oklahoma, then when I went to the Dallas Cowboys and I approached him to be a part of the intern program, and then went back and coached at Oklahoma. When I was promoted to the coordinator position with the Cowboys, I knew who I wanted and we hired John. ... He went on to become the head coach at Oklahoma. He has a reputation as being one of the nation's best recruiters and that's a huge part of his resume and strength. But you'd be remiss if you labeled him as just a recruiter, because he's an outstanding football coach. ... He brings an awful lot to the table."
On plans to complete the staff -
"We haven't finished the coaching staff yet, but we are moving in that direction. I think it's more important to get it right than to get it done. There is no timetable for getting it right. ... We're interviewing guys. It's important for me to watch the chemistry of the staff. We spend so much time together -- the hours are legendary, we work from 70-100 hours per week and you're on the road traveling and you go through good and bad times. You want to see how the chemistry of your staff is going to mesh together. We are going to add some really good coaches. When we get done, it'll be right. As I've told parents in the home, one of the things that is so vitally important in recruiting is 'Who are the men that are going to be the leaders and who is going to impact my son's life? Do they genuinely care or is it lip service?' ... When we do finalize the staff, we'll release all that and let everyone know."
Has a decision been made yet regarding retaining Thigpen, Browning or Sanders?
"It has not"
On recruiting the state of North Carolina -
"North Carolina has the same types of dynamic athletes, they not because of sheer population not have the same numbers, but they have the same types of athletes here. As long as I'm the head football coach, North Carolina will be our No. 1 objective. Every single year - to recruit this area. I want to get into every single high school, meet every coach, get the kids into our clinics and camps. How much recruiting you do out of state is all related to what's in state. There are going to be years where there are five offensive linemen for five schools. Next year there are 15 different linemen. It was that way in Florida. You assess the strengths of your state for that recruiting class and then you go around the country.
"One of the things that's been very evident over the last 4-5 weeks has been the recognition that this institution has. When you place a call from the University of North Carolina, you get a lot of calls back. They know the name ... they know the academic integrity. For me as a recruiter, that's exciting."
On the recruiting game plan -
"We've got some recruits coming in this weekend, and that'll be our first big, major weekend as far as recruiting. We hope to have somewhere between 8-10-12. I don't want large numbers, I don't want 15-18. I don't think you can give the players and their parents the individual attention they need to make sure this is the right place to come. As soon as this weekend is over, seven of the 10 coaches (including myself) can be out on the road and we will burn up the highways and airways to get in all the homes we can. ... "
On the forthcoming spring practice -
"This spring practice, there's going to need to be an awful lot of familiarization of our coaching staff and the athletes we've inherited. What are there strengths? Are they actually at the right position? Are they playing at the position that gives us the best chance to win? Do we need to make any changes with the current personnel? Are there guys on offense that need to be on defense and visa versa?
"Some of that you'd like could potentially transpire prior to the start of spring practice as we watch them go through the offseason conditioning program and assess their athletic ability - there may be a few guys we ask as an experimentation, 'We want to try you here. That doesn't mean that's where you're going to stay, but it's where we think we'd like to get an opportunity to take a look at you as an athlete.'
"And as I told the players last night, I'm more concerned with guys knowing that if they're a great football player, we'll find a way for them to help us win. We'll create packages, scenarios, special plays. If they have one unique talent - I don't care if they're a walk on, freshman or senior - if there is something they do that can help us win, we're going to find a way to get them into the game."
On what he's looking for in an offensive coordinator -
"I want someone as the offensive coordinator who's going to bring something to the staff organizationally, idea-wise; somebody that recognizes that they're going to be the guy that'll mold and groom the quarterback, that they can work chemistry-wise with the other guys on the offense. We'll definitely hire somebody who will be good in all of those areas."