AAC Week 4 Teleconference: East Carolina HC Scottie Montgomery

OPENING STATEMENT:

“Excited the way we started the game. Unfortunately we couldn’t maintain it in the second half against a really, really good football team. I thought their interior defense was probably the best I’ve gone against in college ball. We did have superlatives on offense, Trevon Brown and Brent Smith played well, both played at a high level. Defensively, we need to play at a higher level. Early in the game we got some stops which the offense turned into points which is good. Defensively we got great play from Faulk and Keyon Anderson, but we need to give a lot of credit to Virginia Tech. We need to play a lot more people in our secondary so that we can play at a higher level for a longer time. Our defensive front has come a long way. We’re really excited to kick off conference play. We have a tough opponent, really a good football team coming off a tough defeat against UVA, so they’ll be chomping at the bit to get going, but we’re looking forward to the challenge and starting conference play.”

POSTIVES TO TAKE AWAY FROM VIRGINIA TECH, WHAT CAN YOU SAY ABOUT GARDNER MINSHEW AT QUARTERBACK?:

“He’s played hard. The first game he came out slow, probably from anxiety as he didn’t play as well as we thought he was going to play. We had to start him last week due to Thomas Sirk’s injury. He came out much more poised this week and I could tell he had a much better grip on his emotions. He went out and competed at a much higher level early in the game. The second part of the game, some of the things they did to us defensively and some of our protection issues bothered him, but just a battler and competitor.”

WHEN YOU LOOK AT THE AAC, TRYING TO FIND OPPORTUNITIES TO PLAY, WHAT WENT INTO PLAYING THIS GAME ON SUNDAY?:

“The extra day is important for us coming off of a physical game, but not as physical as a year ago given how many guys we lost in that game. All in all, we get another day of rest and preparation. We were so willing to do what we could do to help in any situation to get everybody’s games in, especially when so many of kids were dealing with family members, whether in Houston or Florida, wherever places were hit. The least we could do was try to accommodate people who were going through some tough times. That’s what conferences are for in my opinion. We are a conference of teams and those teams are made up of individuals who have lives and family other places, so if there was any way we could help and do what we could do, this was one thing we could do to help them make up their games. You only get a certain amount of games to play in as a college athlete, so it was critically important what we did and I’m really pleased with all the coach who were able to get this adjusted.”

WHAT CAN YOU SAY ABOUT BEING EACH OTHER’S RIVALS IN CONFERENCE PLAY, BUT STILL BEING THERE FOR EACH OTHER?:

“It’s very important. Last year we went through heavy flooding here where we needed to move a game. Luckily it was an open date for both teams and we were able to move it, but all everyone reached out to us as they knew what our kids were going through here in eastern North Carolina. It was one of the first times I really felt the power of a conference and the power of coaches reaching out to us and trying to see if there was anything they could do to help us. Now, just watching everyone work together is important, but at the end of the day, they are still our rivals and we are trying to go out and win every game. That’s our biggest goal, to win every game we step on the field, but there is a certain level of civility that goes into being a part of a conference and knowing that the kids and the fans need us. It’s great the way we’ve all been able to help.”

WHAT CHALLENEGES DOES THE NEW UCONN OFFENSIVE SYSTEM BRING?:

“Muliplicity. They are using their motion, with inside zone. They are running the quarterback much better. There’s been a change-up at back, a speed back and a power back. I like the way they are using the RPO, whether that’s to the boundary or to the field. Just a lot more than we had to get ready for last year. They do a good job, made some great decisions at the quarterback position. Bryant Shirreffs is running the offense at a high level. A lot of chances that they almost made last week that they’ll fine-tune just like we are this week. Offensively they present a challenge that we have to be ready for because they’ve gotten a lot better in a short period of time.”

New coaching staff up at UConn this year, including a new offensive scheme, what have you seen from that unit on film that will present some challenges for your defense.

ON EXTRA DAY TO PREPARE:

“The 3-3-5 is very, very tough. Luckily we went against a great opponent in West Virginia who runs a very similar defense, so we’ve had a little bit of work on it. There’s also some things that defensive coordinator Billy Crocker has tweaked to make it a little different, especially when you have such a good defensive line like he has. Last year he was the best defensive coordinator in the country with what they gave up and were able to stop people from doing what they wanted to do with the ball. There are several challenges that it presents, one of which is there are so many different contours that you need to prepare for. How are they going to bring four or five, how are they going to play on the back end? I really like how aggressive they play the back end, they create some turnovers back there. A lot of talent and they are starting a lot of new people on defense which is giving them a lot of energy and they are playing with a lot more enthusiasm. We are looking forward to the challenge on Sunday.”

MATT SCHONVISKY / SITE CREATOR

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3 years ago
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