Quotes From Tuesday's Press Conference

Maryland Athletics
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Head Coach Randy Edsall

Opening Statement:

“I’m looking forward to heading down to Raleigh on Friday to play NC State on Saturday. We’re going up against a team that is very athletic. Defensively, they are tied for 19th in the country in TFL. They have guys who know how to run really well. The secondary has two great safeties, [Dontae] Johnson and [Hakim] Jones. They are really great players who you have to contend with. Robert Caldwell, their middle linebacker, makes a lot of plays for them. Offensively, it seems they have switched quarterbacks between Brandon Mitchell and Pete Thomas. Brandon Mitchell threw for 312 yards last week against ECU. He is a tremendous challenge who can give you a bunch of different looks. We are going to have a great week of preparation as we head down there.”

On NC State’s defense:

“They are a team that will show a three-down and four-down look. They will pressure you and give you different looks with their athleticism. This is something you have to watch out for. We have to watch the athletic guys that they have.”

On becoming more consistent on third down offensively:

“This is something that collectively we have to do a better job offensively. Sometimes it might be a different position on a different third down play. One time, it might be protection; another time, it might be a dropped ball. It might even just be the wrong read. It goes back to what I said on Sunday, which is that we have to be more consistent on what we’re doing. We’ve got to be able to keep possession off the ball and move the chains. The more consistent we are with all of this, will allow us to do that on third downs.”

On keeping the injured players involved with the team over the course of the season:

“Deon [Long] and Stefon [Diggs] have been around. They haven’t been traveling or on the practice field, because of being on crutches. They are here for dinner and for other team events. In terms of having Dexter [McDougle], JJ (Jeremiah Johnson) and [Yannik] Cudjoe-Virgil, when Cole [Farrand] has been out, it’s been great. That just gets another coach on the field and another set of eyes to help those guys. So as they are watching their position, they can be talking to those guys and making corrections. I think it’s been very beneficial and even a way of therapy for those guys.

“A guy like Dexter you feel so bad for, because of the kind of season he was having and how important this is to him. Knowing last week was the last week here got him pretty emotional in the meeting and before we came over here. It meant that much to him and he was so hurt, because he couldn’t go out there and help his teammates by playing. However, he did help his team in other ways. That has been the big thing from a therapy standpoint. The team has got to understand that they can still be a contributor to the team regardless if they are out there competing. That is something that they have done. They have done a good job at doing that and being great contributors, even though they haven’t been on the field playing.”

On linebackers Cole Farrand and Alex Twine battling through injuries:

“I’m proud of Cole and I’m proud of Alex Twine and some others guys because I tell you one thing, there out there giving everything that they got and they’re beat up. They’ve suffered, but it’s that important to them that they want to be out there contributing and again, if they’re cleared by our medical people, these guys will do anything they can to get out there. Cole is as hurt as anybody. When you take a look in terms of the two games when we needed him probably more than any other game, were the two teams that run the ball the most, was Syracuse and then Boston College and we don’t have him. I know it’s killing him that he couldn’t be out there. But believe me he did everything he possibly could to try to get himself ready to play last weekend and the effort that he gave against Virginia Tech when he got hurt and then continued to play I mean it just speaks volumes about his fortitude and his drive and his competitiveness and his willingness to be there for his team. 

“Like I said Alex Twine’s another one, he’s beat up, but he just tells me every week ‘Coach I’ll be ready to play,’ and hopefully Cole will be ok for Saturday. We got to see how he gets through the week, but there’s a lot of guys out there that are really laying it on the line and it’s most appreciative of them. They’re recognizing there is a difference between pain and injury. But still if they’re not capable of playing, our doctors and trainers wouldn’t have them out there, but those guys are playing through the things that people sometimes won’t play through.”

On if keeping the team focused through the course of the season is a challenge:

“Every week’s a challenge. It presents a different challenge because of who you’re playing and everything else. We were taking about this the other day in the defensive room. If you take a look, if you take away the seniors, there’s like 21 of 22 guys coming back who have started in games. So you got a lot of experienced young guys, but there are things that go on, they continually learn. The thing that’s probably frustrating is the fact is the consistency part. That’s probably the things that’s the most frustrating is you see us do a lot of great things throughout the game and then there’s this X number of plays where you kind of sit there and you scratch your head and say where did that come from. And then the other thing that’s been frustrating is just in terms of the number of turnovers that we’ve had. But, the thing is, we just got to get these guys to understand that they got to be more consistent. I’ve always been taught that repetition is the mother of learning and the more you do the things over and over and over again, but you do them correctly, the better opportunity you have to be successful. That’s kind of what we’ve been trying to do with our team and we have. We’ve made a lot of progress, it’s frustrating because we think we could make a lot more if there weren’t some situations. But again some of the situations, we can control, we just got to get better at it.”

On Friendship Collegiate Academy and the development of the players it produces:

“I think that Friendship Collegiate Academy is a school that really embodies how things should be because there, you don’t graduate from Friendship unless you have at least two acceptances to colleges. So it’s really a college prep charter school and I think Aazaar [Abdul-Rahim] has just done a tremendous job of bringing young people to his program and stressing academics, stressing hard work, discipline, work ethic, and having first-hand experience with young men from that program who’ve come here, they’ve made the transition pretty well because of the environment that a Aazaar has in his program. And those kids come here, they understand hard work, they understand hard coaching, and they understand that academics are important and so that’s a place where we’ll always continue to recruit and we’ve had success there and I just think he’s done a great job. I think the concept of that charter school is really, really special.”

Quarterback C.J. Brown

On Saturday being the final ACC football game for Maryland:

“I don’t think it’s hit me yet, I don’t think it’s hit anyone yet.  Our season is not over, we do have this game and hopefully we get number seven, that’s our goal, going into the postseason, going to a bowl game. I think that’s something we’ll reflect later when the time comes.”

On if he is aware of the bowl projections:

“Not really, not right now, it’s tough to say. If we go out there and get number seven it will definitely help our chances, that’s all we can focus on right now.”

On the confidence level of the team getting the road win at Virginia Tech heading to NC State:

“It was a huge confidence booster, anytime you go on the road especially at Lane Stadium. It helps a lot, we’ve played great in the past down at NC State. A lot of guys have been there before, it isn’t our first time and we look forward to the challenge.”

Offensive Lineman Sal Conaboy

On how hard the loss on Saturday was to the team:

“It’s real tough when you lose like that, a hard tough fought game on both sides of the ball.  To come out on the other side like that, it’s tough.  It’s tough to even fall asleep that night.  Sunday you have to shake it off and move onto the next one and that’s what we did.  We got right into the NC State film; we just have to take care of this one.”

On how the team moves on to NC State:

“Just try to get everyone to not mope around, trying to get everyone to do the things we always do, get in and watch the film, and move onto the next one.”

Linebacker Matt Robinson

On moving on following the loss to Boston College:

“It was definitely a disappointment, but we’re looking forward to starting practice today and getting back and looking forward to getting win number seven this week.”

On the importance of responding against NC State:

“It’s really big, we really want to finish with a winning record and if we lose this we won’t have a chance to do so. That’s what Coach [Edsall] has been preaching, just trying to get win number seven and finish the best we can.”

On stopping NC State’s offense:

“They run a lot of multiple schemes, formations. They’re going to try to run the ball and throw the ball a little bit so we just have to come out, really know the game plan and execute.”

Linebacker Marcus Whitfield

On the team’s morale following the loss to Boston College:

“It was a tough loss, every team goes through it. We just have to get back in the film room and get ready for this next week coming up.”

On NC State’s offense:

“They run the ball, they pass the ball, and they like to spread it out. They are more of a balanced team so we’ll see a little bit of everything. With the run, two-back isolations, powers, and then spread out trying to get the ball to their receivers.”

– Maryland –