“First of all, we’re really privileged to be able to honor our armed forces. Very special day and glad that we can do that again this year. I know our guys are looking forward to it. We were able to go back and evaluate all the film from the previous week and were able to find where are mistakes were made and the opportunities that we had that we didn’t capitalize on. Hopefully we’ll get those corrected this week and will play a better game here in Kenan Stadium.
"We’re looking forward to the Pirates coming to town. We know that it will be a very hard fought game. Ruffin McNeill always puts a very good product on the field and those guys will play hard for him. We look forward to it.”
What has been the difference this season that has led to the lack of offensive production in terms of yards gained for you offense?
“We’re not playing as well offensively. We’re just not playing as well. It’s as simple as that. It would be easy if it was just one thing. If it was one thing we’d get that one thing corrected but there’s a lot of things involved and we’re still just not gelling as an offense yet.”
What do you think are the main things that are missing offensively?
“Some of it is the continuity up front and the young guys up front. I think there are a lot of different pieces. We’re not getting into a flow. You’ve got to keep moving the chains to get into a flow offensively and for everyone involved. From a penalty here to a missed block here to a misread here it’s always one guy. That’s the thing on offense you’ve got to have all eleven doing it at the same time.”
Comments on Bryn Renner’s play thus far especially in the second half against Georgia Tech:
“Our entire offense was struggling in the second half. I don’t necessarily feel like it was just Bryn. I don’t think anybody made anything happen on offense. I really don’t in the second half. Whatever we could do to shoot ourselves in the foot to hurt ourselves we did. That’s kind of been our Achilles heel this year.”
Did you feel like your team would be further along at this point in the season?
“I really did. That’s disappointing. We’ve still got a lot of work to do. We’ve got a long season and we’ll get there.”
How do you feeling about your running game right now?
“It’s not up to our standards. I’ll put it like that. We’ve still got a ways to go. We’ve got a ways to go in our passing game, our screen game, our running game and I don’t know if there’s an aspect of what we’re doing offensively that we feel good about yet.”
Thoughts on East Carolina quarterback Shane Carden:
“He moves the ball around all over the field. I think he does a great job of distributing it where it needs to go. He’s got some weapons out there at wide receiver and I think he’s very comfortable in what they’re doing. Lincoln’s got him coached up well and they’re spreading it around really well. They’re not afraid to put it in multiple receiver’s hands. I think they’re executing pretty well. I think you look at the three games they’ve played and they’ve moved the ball and done a nice job.”
Where does ECU rank among a rivalry with North Carolina in your opinion?
“I don’t know where they rank. When you play as many instate opponents as you do they’re all very important and they’re all important to the state of North Carolina. Just the regional rivalries that we talk about and how important that is to the state, our fans, their fans and everybody involved. It’s always important and always means a little bit more. As far as ranking, I don’t know if we have a ranking.”
Impressions of the defense and how they’ve performed so far this season:
“I was pleased with they way they played really for about 54 minutes actually. You say yeah you need to get off the field on third down but you get into some when they get into their flow and get into third and shorts it’s going to be tough to do. Then if they don’t they go for it on fourth down and short. We knew that now nine for sixteen isn’t something we’d call a success by any means especially the third and longs we gave up. If you go back and you really look, the culprit in all of our game plan is we had guys where they were supposed to be.
"They were there to make the play but we had 21 missed tackles in the game. There were probably about five of them that would have shut down third down and got us off the field. Unfortunately, we didn’t make those tackles. The tough thing about it was that those were the tackles that were missed without a blocker on them. We had some guys with some incredible effort with some blockers on them making tackles. Then we had some situations where we were in the open field unblocked right where we’re supposed to be, the way it’s drawn up and we don’t make a play.”
How do you think your defense handled cut blocking after preparing so much for it?
“You go back and look at it on film. We were on our feet the majority of the game. I thought our guys did a really good job against it. Not only staying up but also just defeating the block and still making the tackle. There were time and time again where the effort on our defense was phenomenal really for those 54 minutes. They really ran around. They made plays, they were excited and there was a lot of energy.”
Thoughts on East Carolina’s defense:
“Ruffin, I mean he’s got them playing hard now. They’re flying around. They really are. I know he’s a defensive guy and I think he’s got those guys juiced up pretty good. You look at the three games which is what we’re doing watching the film and then going back and looking at some of last year’s game. Those guys are going to come in here and they are going to play extremely hard on defense. They’re flying around. You’ve got a lot of guys getting multiple hats to the ball. They’ve created some takeaways. I think they’re playing really well.”