“Hard fought game. Got to give a lot of credit to Jim Grobe and his football team for the way they played tonight. It was a typical game for them as far as playing hard, playing with minimal mistakes and capitalizing on the mistakes of the opposing team.
“We had too many mistakes on our part. Too many penalties. You get down in the score-zone and you have to kick field goals instead of touchdowns and you turn the ball over on your own end and it’s hard to win. There’s nothing special about it, we just didn’t do what it took to win tonight.”
Why were they so effective throwing the ball?
“That’s a good question. I didn’t see much pressure on the quarterback the whole night and I didn’t see anybody very close to receivers either, so that’s going to be interesting to see on the film. It’s a good question.”
When did you decide not to play Gio Bernard?
“He went out before the pregame and we wanted to work him out and see how he felt and it just didn’t feel right for him and at that point we decided that we weren’t going to take a chance there. He felt like he was close. He thought he was going to able to go going into it and when he got out there it just didn’t feel right that’s when I made the decision.”
On A.J. Blue and Romar Morris:
“I thought they did a really nice job. Both of them ran the ball very well. They did a nice job in protection. I didn’t see many mistakes from them. I thought they ran extremely hard and they took care of the football.”
How disappointing was it to settle for field goals instead of touchdowns?
“That’s the difference in the game really. It’s about as disappointing as it gets, because you score a touchdown and we’re all sitting here and I’ve got a smile on my face, but that’s the way the game is played. That’s why you got to go do it. Just because you get the ball down there doesn’t mean it’s going to go in. You got to make it go in. When you get in the score-zone there’s got to be something that comes on in your mind and you can’t be turned down. You got to get the ball in the end zone.”
How close of a call was it putting Bryn Renner back in the game and did the hit at the goal line affect him, specifically on the next series?
“Yeah, we put the ball on the ground on that series, so that’s one that I’ve got to go back and look at myself, because I made the call at the end to put him back out there and he felt like he was ready to go. The medical staff felt like he was ready to go and to all indications he was, but the ball came out on that series, so that’s something that I’m going to question myself on that deal.”
Was Renner’s condition a factor in why you ran the ball more in the second half?
“No, we felt like when we went in at halftime we felt like they hadn’t stopped us running the football. We needed to go ahead and establish the run and continue running the game, because there was no reason to get out of a game plan at that point. We felt like we were very effective running the football and we were the entire game.”
Despite your success running the ball in the second half you occasionally got away from it when maybe could’ve grinded the game out.
“Maybe so. I don’t know the answer to that.”
Can you talk about Renner’s performance in general tonight? He seemed a little wild at times with his throws.
“I think there was some pressure sometimes. I think took a pretty good lick down there. I’m sure he got rattled a little bit. That’s what you want to do to a quarterback. You want to hit him hard and it rattled him so I’m not so sure he wasn’t a little rattled, but Bryn played well enough for us to win a football game. We didn’t play well enough in all three phases to win a game tonight and it’s just Wake Forest was better than we were today. That’s all there is to it. You got to give them credit.”
What happened on Wake Forest’s game winning drive?
“The 92-yard drive? We had a facemask that started off on the beginning of the drive. I think it was on third down, which was tough. Then from that point on they hit everything they threw. We weren’t anywhere close to anybody, so I don’t know what the answer is there.”
Did you emphasize defending Michael Campanaro coming into the game?
“No doubt. We knew he was a good football player and tonight we made him look like an All-American, so maybe he will be.”
How concerned are you about Bernard moving forward?
“I’m not concerned. I really thought he was going to be able to go today and I don’t think he’s that far away in all indication from just talking to him, because, as a running back, if you don’t have your wheels and things don’t feel right, especially when you’re his style of runner, you can’t do much. I’m not concerned. I’m hoping he’ll be ready to go this week.”
How much did missing Bernard hurt your team tonight?
“I don’t know. I would say the two running backs ran the ball very well tonight and did a heck of a job so I don’t take anything from them. They certainly played well enough for us to win.”
Did you have some miscommunications on some plays on offense?
“It’s all about preparation. That’s what it’s all about. It’s always about preparation. It’s how you prepare on Tuesday and Wednesday and Thursday [that] determine how you play on Saturday. Obviously we didn’t prepare well enough on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday and you learn a lesson from it. Hopefully we’ll be a better football team because of it.”
After the excitement following last week does this reinforce the fact that this is still a work in progress?
“Yeah I don’t think there’s any doubt. There was never that doubt in my mind the whole time. I think there were a lot of people out there ready to crown us as champs after beating Elon 62-0. I said it then, we got a long way to go. A long way to go and we’ll be a better football team because of it. This is the first form of adversity that we’ve had as a football team now in 2012 and so we get to find out a little bit about who the Tar Heels are going to be.”