Monday PC Quotes + Audio

Inside Carolina's Monday press conference coverage includes quotes and audio from head coach Butch Davis, Hakeem Nicks, Greg Little and Kentwan Balmer, who spoke to the media as the Tar Heels begin preparations for Saturday's regular-season finale against Duke.

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Butch Davis


Opening remarks:
"It's the last game of the season, and I think it's still [about] all of the things that we've said every single week with our players about getting ready to play. The importance is to finish as positively as you can – end on a good note [and] win the game. During this time of the year, there's lots of potential for outside distractions [like] Thanksgiving. The schedule's a little bit different for the players this week. Yesterday was normal, today's going to be a normal day, Tuesday will be normal and Wednesday will a little bit more like an NFL day, in the sense that they don't have class on Wednesday.

"We'll have more of an access and try to do more things on Wednesday than we would typically do on a normal Wednesday because we're going to give them the opportunity to have some time off with their families on Thursday afternoon. We're going to practice Thursday morning, try to turn them loose around 10:30 or 11:00 a.m., and give them the entire afternoon to be able to go home and be with their families. And then the ones that aren't going to go home, we're going to do something here with the coaches and our wives to kind of simulate as best as possible a Thanksgiving away from home for the guys that don't have some place to go."

On Duke:
"They've got some very good athletes defensively. Thaddeus Lewis, the quarterback, is a guy that not only does he have a good arm and the ability to make plays in the passing game, but he's got good athleticism. It's always a concern about a quarterback that can extend the plays and keeps plays alive because he's such a good athlete. You may think you' re starting to get a little bit of pressure on him, and he's got the ability to move around in the pocket, scramble and get outside the pocket. They've had some big plays."

On the Kenan Stadium environment and its eventual expansion:
"I think the five previous home games have been outstanding. It clearly starts with the fans, and probably as much with the fans as with the student body. The endorsement of Rick Steinbacher creating that Tar Pit idea in the end zone to get the students there to be a vocal part of the game day atmosphere. The fans have done their part.

"The Old Well Walk has been spectacular. There's clearly in excess of multiples of thousands of people [that attend]. Our players love it, the recruits that have been a part of it love watching it and being a part of it, so you want to continue to grow the game day atmosphere. That coming to North Carolina games on Saturday is something that is extraordinarily important. It's not just an every-now-and-then [thing], that you want to come…

"I see this expansion in two parts. Part of it is a desperate, true need for an enhanced academic support area. We've got so many athletes that are here – not only walk-ons, but scholarship players in 28 sports. They need a place that structurally and physically can meet their needs as far as tutoring, academic support, study halls, classrooms and all of those kinds of things, and that's something we truly, desperately need.

"The expansion part of it, I truly believe that we need another 8,000-10,000 seats. I think it will be a combination of general admission, club seating and sky boxes. Those things help the athletic program because they generate revenue. They are things that just don't go into the football coffers. They go in to pay for non-revenue sports and scholarships for other athletes, so I think it's an important thing."

On the rumored contract extension:
"I'm not going to talk about that today."

Hakeem Nicks


On how teams have played him differently this season:
"I am seeing a lot more double coverage towards the end of the season, which is pretty much what we expected. We just got to go out there and play our game. We still have Brandon [Tate] and Brooks [Foster], and Greg [Little] coming out of the backfield now."

On possibly breaking UNC's receiving record against Duke:
"It is not something that I think about. At the end of the season, whatever happens, happens. I just like to focus on contributing to the team during the season."

Greg Little


On playing against Duke and being from Durham:
"If I don't play well and we don't come out with this win, my buddies are going to get on me pretty hard about losing to Duke. Not that Duke is a bad team, because they can score some points. Not to degrade them or anything like that, we just want to win this game and it is big for us."

On his first performance as a running back in his early career:
"I am hard on myself. I know when I don't make a cut right or pick up the right blitz or things like that, I am very hard on myself. I want myself to do the best. It was just a possible jump cut here or cut back there, it would have made a difference. I feel with practice and game experience I can improve on that."

Kentwan Balmer


On playing his final UNC game on Saturday:
"Just to be as prepared as I can, give all I got to the University of North Carolina, my teammates and my coaching staff. They will be missed. I look forward to going out there Saturday and giving all I got."

On his career:
"This has been the fastest season I have had since I've been here. Where did the time go? That's how I look at it. It has been so fast and I can't believe I am almost done. At the end of every year, you say you got next year and need to do this and that to get better for next year. I can't say that anymore, it is out of my hands after this."

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