CuseNation TV: Lester on 1st ACC Road Test

Syracuse offensive coordinator Tim Lester discusses the Wake Forest defense, his second week calling plays, A.J. Long, his quarterback rotation and more inside.


On offense against FSU: "We were hot and cold. I thought we got in a rhythm. I thought we were getting in and out of the huddle well. The guys did a good job. We moved A.J. and Austin around. Tried not to get them sitting in the pocket too much just to get them comfortable. We've still got to better in the red zone. I was happy with the tempo we played at. We were getting in and out and putting pressure with our pace a little bit. We still have to get better at it."

On A.J. Long: "It's a difficult first draw for a freshman quarterback but he's got a great demeanor to him. He loves playing football. He loves playing any kind of game. He's a competitive guy. I don't think there are too many situations that are too big for him. His demeanor really helps him in situations like that."

On Long taking 1st team reps: "It'll be great for him. He hasn't gotten a ton of reps like this. Today he got a ton of reps and he did a good job. It'll just continue to help him with the learning curve part of it. Young kids like that they can't get enough reps. So this will be a huge week for him to get the learning curve hopefully going at a sharper angle."

On Long on the road: "He's traveled every game. We pretty much travel all of our quarterbacks every game we can. Last year, the two guys that redshirted (Austin Wilson and Mitch Kimble) traveled every week just to have them there and go through the process of meetings and going to different stadiums. Seeing things in different environments that you'll be in. So I don't think it'll be a huge deal. For him, it's just about getting out there and he just can't wait for the kickoff. That's just the type of kid he is."

On Wilson if he's healthy: "If he's healthy, it depends on how much practice he gets. He did a really good job and it comes down to if and when and when we find out we'll get him as many reps as we can. We'll play him depending on how many reps he's gotten. If he doesn't get many, then we're not going to play him much."

On Mitch Kimble: "Mitch will be ready. Mitch hasn't gotten enough reps to put him out there yet. It all depends on how the game plays out. But Mitch is very similar to A.J. as far as skill set. The game plan, for me, will be a heck of a lot easier if it's those two. Because it's the same game plan. They both do very similar things. They both use their feet. They both throw the ball well. So that makes it a little bit easier for me than last week."

On Wake Forest: "They're really good on defense. They have multiple coverages, they're really, really sound. They've got some secondary players that are as good as we've seen. They've been really stingy on defense. It's going to be a heck of a challenge."

On his 2nd week calling plays: "Oh yeah. I was nervous. I was nervous calling plays. Before the game, I was doing the math like how many have I called. I think it was 103. I've called 90 offensive games and 13 defensive games when I was d-coordinator. I was trying to talk myself into not being nervous. Once I called the first play or two, you kind of just forget about it. You get back into a rhythm. I think I just did a number on myself because as soon as we started calling plays it was no big deal. So it was fun. I just have to make sure I have good timing and put our guys in good situations."

Tags: Tim Lester, Syracuse

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