Monday PC Quotes + Audio

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. -- Inside Carolina's Monday press conference coverage includes quotes and audio from head coach Butch Davis, T.J. Yates and Zack Pianalto, who spoke to the media as the Tar Heels prepare for their season opener against LSU in the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game on Saturday in Atlanta.

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Opening remarks:
"Before we get started talking about LSU, there's one thing that I would like to say. I'd like for this to be perfectly clear – there is no one single game that is more important winning than the character and integrity of this university and this football program. I think that's the overwhelming conviction that I have and I think it's the same with this entire football program and the administration."

How is your team handling the distractions?
"I think our kids have done a very good job of being focused. They realize that we're playing a very talented football team. They know that it's a big challenge and I think that we've had very good practices and preparation."

Have you made any personnel decisions based on the investigation or is that still something you've got to go up to game time with?
"It's possible. We always have to be prepared for any unforeseen things. Throughout the course of every season, there are always unforeseen things that can pop up. It could be injuries, we've had kids that miss games because of funerals. There's any number of things. I think the overriding message that I've also tried to deliver to our players is to be prepared. You never know when your opportunity will present itself."

So no specific player decisions have been made?
"They have not."

How many players would you say there is a possibility that you could be without this weekend?
"That's something that's part of the review and I can't make any statement about that."

Is the depth chart a fluid thing right now?
"Today is the players' day off. So for tomorrow's practice, we have a tentative one, but I would say that it's been fluid."

How excited is the team about the Chick-fil-A Game?
"I think they're very much looking forward to the start of the 2010 season. As far back as seven months ago, they wanted to play the season. They love football. They're excited about football and they're looking forward to it."

How have the second-line guys done during this process?
"It was important for us to develop some depth with this football team on both sides of the ball. Growing your football program is about getting your kids ready to play. They've gotten lots of practice opportunities. The twos and the threes have been somewhat of the featured players when we've had scrimmages, so I think they are getting sufficient work."

In retrospect, do you think you may have said, implied or admitted any words to a tutor whom you hired for your son… Would she may have misconstrued that as encouragement to work outside the lines?

Regarding the players that may not play, is it that you don't want to make that information public yet or is that a decision hasn't been made yet?
"That's part of the review and there's been no decision made at this time."

On determining who can travel to Atlanta and how the staff will find out who can play:
"Someone asked the question about who can travel and who can't travel. The ACC obviously has the road game number [72] where you can only take so many kids. Well, this is not an ACC game. We could conceivably take everybody in the entire football program. So it's more an issue of not who can travel and who can be on the plane and who can be in Atlanta, as much as who can play in the game. That's the bigger issue."

Will you take kids that can't play against LSU down to Atlanta?
"That cannot play? If they are deemed that they cannot play, they will not travel."


Are you excited to get this season underway on Saturday?
"Absolutely. I remember looking back – we have the countdown on our message boards in the football center. We've had them since like Day 80. And I remember looking back at it being 80 days away, 50 days away and now it's down to the single digits, so it's extremely exciting."

How much does the academic review add to the distractions that you already had?
"It's obviously distracting in some sense, but I think the guys on this team do a great job of once we get on the football field and start practicing, we're completely focused on football and nothing else. We don't let the outside stuff that could potentially hurt us get to us during practice and during our film study."

Was there ever any doubt in your mind that you would be the starting quarterback against LSU?
"There wasn't much doubt in my mind. I'm very confident in my abilities and how well I know this offense. I knew I had to do some certain things to gain some trust back within the coaching staff and players as far as taking care of the ball and I think I did a good job of that during camp."


How surprising was last week's news about the possible academic misconduct?
"It was real surprising. We didn't know anything about it. It was similar with the news in July. It's just one of those things – more adversity. Every team in the country will go through adversity this year and we've had our fair share. It won't be the last piece of adversity we get this fall, so you just have to take it in stride and keep focused, because we're going to be playing the game regardless. I don't think we're going to cancel the games."

How much do the players know about what's going on?
"Not much, honestly. We hear about as much as you hear. We don't know what's going to happen or what's going to go on. We're just going in with whoever is going to be there and play."

Have you seen a more talented scout team before?
"Well, they're helping us get ready for LSU."

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