ORANGE & BLUE: Football Press Conference

ORANGE & BLUE: Football Press Conference

Yeah. After– I think we
made it through camp relatively injury free in
relation to past years and just over my career. And so I think we managed
camp appropriately in terms of volume,
amount of contact, the situational
work that we needed. We’re able to
establish enough depth and get a good idea of where we
stand prior to our first game. So I think all those things
we would view as successful. Our leadership was determined,
from a captain’s standpoint, in that Bryce Perkins,
Bryce Hall, and Jordan Mack were elected captains. And that was at the
completion of camp, so we have three
captains this year. And so a lot of knowns
going into our opener, meaning the returning
quarterback and a style of play that we established a year
ago, many defenders returning in a style of play that’s
been fairly established now going into our fourth
year and against an opponent that we haven’t yet been
able to gain a victory over. And so there’s a lot of focus. There’s a lot of urgency, and
I would say a lot of intensity as to preparation. With ACC play right
off the bat, there hasn’t been any need for
a drop-off or complacency, or they’re just– every
day has been a solid work day to this point. And so I’ve been
encouraged by that. The command of the
offense certainly appears to be at a higher level. Ultimately, though,
we all know it’s a results-oriented business. And great quarterbacks
win championships. And so getting to a
bowl game and winning, it’s not a
championship, but it’s a significant step in the right
direction for our program. The very best quarterbacks lead
their team to championships. And so outcome is really going
to determine where he’s grown. And so making the critical
play at the critical time in a critical game,
that’s what the best guys do at that position. And so hopefully Bryce
has advanced to that part and to that point. And we won’t know until we play. So Wayne Taulapapa is, at
this point, listed as one. And any or after that you could
basically take in sequence. Wayne is the most trustworthy to
this point, the most versatile to this point, and has had the
most production to this point. There are others
that are capable. There will be others that play. And the production might
shift, even in the game, to where we’re wondering,
how did that just happen? Because it’s very difficult to
replicate a game in fall camp. I’ll never forget
Coach Mendenhall, he said it’d be like the best
quarterbacks win championships. So can you win a championship? And that’s what separates
the great QBs from the not great ones, the ability
to somehow, no matter where the team’s in or
how they’re playing, they have the
ability to make them feel like they’re
out in the game and have the
ability to come back and always put in
a fighting effort. Well, anytime you open up
with a conference game, there’s a heightened
urgency because it’s like right off the bat, this
is going for the conference. And being in the position last
year, where we were so close, and Pitt was the team that stood
against us in that process, and so there’s a
heightened urgency to be ready for that game one. I think our wide
receiver corps has grown and developed immensely
for the past couple of years. And I think competition
makes the best of all of us. So I think as a whole,
we’ve gotten much better. Olamide was an amazing
leader here, off the field and on the field. I think he showed
me a lot the way he played, but also how he
carried himself in the locker room and around his teammates. So I think just being around
him was a big influence on me. And we’re just really
good friends too. So he definitely spent some time
to invest in me, which I think know is paying dividends now.

About the Author: Garret Beatty


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