"It's always good when you talk about guys like Brooks Foster that is going to be back, and Brandon Tate that suffered a little bit of a concussion is certainly going to be back and ready to go. But getting Scott Lenahan back on the offensive line, I think that's certainly going to be a big part of helping our offensive line and their efficiency and the protection and stuff. For the first time – knock on wood – in several weeks, I think we're as healthy as we've been since maybe the beginning of the season."
On the offensive line's production in the running game:
"I think there are several factors there. One, as a collective unit, it takes a little bit of time for an offensive line to learn to play together. We started off with Kyle Jolly that's a sophomore, we've got Garrett Reynolds that's a junior at right tackle, [and] we've got Scott Lenahan that's a senior, so we've got two juniors, two sophomores and one senior, so as a unit, it took them a little bit of time for them to get together and work some things out.
"One of the things, and I personally believe that this has made a major difference, we've put a bigger emphasis on the running game after about Week 2 or 3. We were trying to go with our [running] game stuff against scout team players, which were either one of two things – walk-on players, or sometimes a few of the freshmen that are not playing that are red-shirting.
"And sometimes it was too easy... So, I think it was the week before the Virginia Tech game, we just scrapped that whole idea and said, "You know what? The best way for our football team to get better at stopping the run and running the football, let's go out and put our best players against our best players.' So every Tuesday and Wednesday, we have about 8 or 10 that it is full speed live. We line up and we come off and we try to knock the snot out of each other.
"We don't always tackle the ball carrier to the ground, but it is full speed, live contact, and its our best players against our best players, and I think that the improvement that we've had week after week after week, I think it started to show some evidence at Virginia Tech in the second half, and certainly against Miami a little against South Carolina and hopefully through the remainder of the season.
"I heard somebody say the other day, and I'll attribute it to Durell [Mapp], he's majoring in communications and minoring in knocking the taste out of somebody's mouth."
On Wake Forest's tendency to run on the edges:
"A lot of their success comes on the perimeter, whether it's the quarterback breaking containment, or it's the running back on misdirections, [or] a play that they run that we call the speed sweep, where they bring a wide receiver in motion and it looks like he's going to cross the formation to change the formation strength and as he goes flying across the quarterback gives it to him in the gun, or if the quarterback is underneath. That will be a big part of our game plan strategy. We've got to be able to find a way to keep those guys from getting on the perimeter."
On this week's practice:
"I think that people are going to be pleasantly surprised with the way these kids have practiced. I told our team today that Wednesday's practice, in my personal opinion, was probably one of the top three-four-five practices that we've had this entire season. I've watched exclusively what we've done at cornerback, trying to fill in for some of the guys that are no longer there, and I think the kids that are going to play there this Saturday – I think that we are going to be very pleased with."
On what he hopes his players learn outside of football:
"There are so many opportunities when you play collegiate athletics about things that you can learn. I think perseverance and learning how to deal with adversity – if you look at that, I think that's one thing that I think is a great lesson in life, because there will always be some type of adversity, hopefully never in you marriage, but potentially in your businesses or raising your children, and I think that as a young man, when you learn to persevere and learn how to handle adversity and to overcome it, I think that is a great life lesson."
On the biggest area of concern through seven games:
"The area that we're the most concerned about and the area where we spent the lion's share of our practice time last week and this week is trying to eliminate some of the bad plays. We looked at all of our cut-ups, and offensively, we were having negative yard plays where we lost yards in the running game [and] we lost yards because of sacks and those negative plays really put us in situations that made it very difficult for us to convert first downs."
'Butch Davis Live' airs Thursday evenings on Tar Heel Sports Network affiliates.