"We knew before the season started that it was going to be a challenging schedule. I think our football team has made great progress. We've put ourselves in position to win an awful lot of games. So far, we've had some great victories, especially in Kenan Stadium. This will be a real challenge. Boston College is a good football program. If you go back and look at the last 10 years of their program, they've got a streak of like eight out of the last ten years they've been in bowl games. They're a talented team.
"It was an impressive victory last week against Virginia Tech at home. If nothing else catches your attention, that certainly will… Our kids have had a good week so far of practice, and they're excited about getting ready to play this game on Saturday."
How have the players responded after Saturday's loss?
"One of the things that is healthy about our football team is that they're never afraid to look at themselves, and that includes the coaches and our role in any unfortunate loss that we have. How can we help our players be in better positions to make better plays? Our players always take a great, healthy approach because we don't lie to them. The truth is the truth.
"The film tells the truth every single time you look at it. And one of the things that I like about our approach is that we've got a 24-hour rule… But there's a little bit of a chip of discontent, which I think football teams have to have. I think you've got to have it all of the time. A little bit of that discontent is that we felt like we let one get away. We didn't play as well as we would have like to, because we're the only team that we can control."
On things the team is working on from the Virginia game:
"There are things that this football team has got to continue to improve on, if we're going to have the season that we would like to. We'd like to continue to improve on pass rush. With Brandon Tate being out, we're always still trying to look at how we can create and generate some offense on punt returns and kick returns. That's some work in progress…
"One of the things that we've been doing for the last three weeks is that we've actually been having extra two-minute drills. Historically, we had always done two-minute drills on Thursdays, and a couple of weeks ago we started not only doing them on Thursday, but we also started adding one on Wednesday afternoon at the conclusion of that practice, just to try to get more work in situations where time is a factor and new players are playing in the game. So there's any number of things that we're continuing to work on."
"We've played seven games now, so obviously, we've got a lot of guys that are battling through the typical bumps and bruises. But unfortunately for probably the first time since T.J. [Yates] got injured, we've lost some players. Anthony Elzy fractured his scapula – which is the flat bone on the back of your shoulder – and he's going to be out for six weeks. So that's certainly an impactful thing because of the role that he plays offensively and on special teams.
"The ultimate decision is if that kid plays, is it going to make difference in us winning or losing games. As the season progresses, obviously, with us having a 5-2 record and having five games left to go, every game left is extraordinarily important. You hope that the depth doesn't get to the point – we've got about eight or nine guys that can't play in games. T.J. Yates, Zack Pianalto, Anthony Elzy, Devon Ramsay. And every week, as you start to lose some guys, somebody's got to step up and play. Until the depth of the program [catches up], sometimes it's true freshmen.
"But there will come a point in time when you have to balance whether or not it's worth a kid to play two games, three games or whatever. I think every single one of our freshmen would tell you that if it meant winning the ACC or it meant going to a bowl game or it meant having a winning season and beating certain teams, if they only played two games, they'd be willing to do it. We'll just have to play it by ear as the season progresses."
'Butch Davis Live' airs Wednesday evenings on Tar Heel Sports Network affiliates.