"For everybody, you have to appreciate what we've tried to accomplish in the 13 practices we've had thus far. It's a total, brand new installation. New offense, new defense, new special teams. Every single day is a crash course in something that will show up next season. Today we had an unbelievably exciting goal line scrimmage. We knocked each other around – put the ball at the three yard line, drew a line in the sand and challenged guys to be tough and physical. Yesterday it was about two minutes, the day before it was red zone. Every day is a meaningful installation. The scrimmage Saturday will be more in-depth and full field.
"This football team has made its biggest progress in understanding the expectations of what the coaching staff is looking for – great effort, playing with passion, flying around, making plays … We've tried to create an atmosphere on the practice field where there is no fear of failure. None whatsoever. When you step on the field, you're pushing the limits to be the very best you can be and know the coaches won't jump down your throat when you make mistakes. You'll never find out unless you get outside the box and challenge yourself to be the best you can. That's how you become a champion."
On Joe Dailey's move to WR -
"That's one of the clear bright spots … He's a great kid and he's got unbelievable athletic ability and speed. We felt he had the biggest chance to impact this team by going to wide receiver where he could touch the ball on reverses, deep passes, jailbreak screens. … It's unlimited the kinds of things you can do with Joe. It's been a huge positive for our football team."
On how the incoming recruiting class impact this team -
"It is a very talented incoming freshman class, but you have to keep in mind that they are freshman and it is still a transition period going to your first year of college no matter how physically gifted you are. Having said that, I do believe maybe half of this class will have an opportunity to help this football team. They'll curve out a niche, maybe on special teams, a backup role or unique situations. …"
On continuing the Old Well Walk -
"Rest assured, we are definitely keeping the Old Well Walk. I love the tradition of it, the players love it, it sets a great tempo and to feel the enthusiasm of the fans. … I know it means a lot to the players and it's something we will keep."
On the defensive schemes and depth -
"If you've followed my career, you know the majority of our defensive scheme will be based out of a 4-3 defense. It's been my background, but I think where we've changed and evolved is a lot more variety. We'll incorporate some 3-4 schemes, a lot of pressure packages and I really believe as a defense you have to make the offense have bad plays – pressure the quarterback, aggressively challenge protections."
On Connor Barth -
"You want to talk about a huge weapon for Tar Heel football next year … One of the best kickers I've ever been around was Phil Dawson with the Cleveland Browns and I think Connor is in that same mold. This kid can make every kick and he's got a strong leg. I am thankful he's on this football team – wish he was a sophomore!"
On the offensive outlook -
"Right now the strength of the offense is at two different positions. The offensive line has the opportunity to become a very good group and it's not just limited to five guys. I think there's the potential for at least seven to eight, and maybe even nine, who can become good solid linemen. The other group that has established itself is the wide receiver group. Hakeem Nicks has outstanding hands, Brandon Tate has the ability to make big plays, having Joe Dailey that gives you three guys … and then there are other guys … Clearly the most inexperienced part of the football team is right up the middle at the quarterback and running back. That's where the biggest competition is going on and is the biggest challenge for John Shoop to get the quarterback to be efficient, make good, smart decisions and I trust John and think he'll do a great job with it."
"Butch Davis Live" will be on Tar Heel Sports Network affiliates this fall.