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News and Notes from the ACC Coaches Teleconference 09/04

Coaches from around the ACC spoke today via teleconference, including Miami's Al Golden.

Ned Dishman

Audio files and full transcripts of the teleconference can be found later this afternoon on

Al Golden of Miami:

Coach Golden called the game against UF a "great opportunity for the program."

  • On the impact of this game on recruiting, "Everybody has their own plan, at the end of the day we are responsible for how we play and who we recruit."
  • Golden also said he had no idea how many recruits would be attending the game.
  • He said that the school added 2,000 seats to Sun Life Stadium and that the game was completely sold out.
  • On whether or not the team held back anything against FAU, he referenced the number of upsets in week 1 against FCS opponents and said winning was more important then holding back. "I don't think you can sit there and say we are going to hold anything back and worry about next week."
  • Golden also said that he felt Miami's special teams needed to improve over week 1.

    There seemed to be some technical difficulty during Golden's portion of the conference, so it was was much briefer then expected.

    News and Notes from around the rest of the ACC:

    Editor's Note:: It was announced just before the teleconference that Clemson QB Tahj Boyd was named National Player of the Week, and FSU QB Jameis Winston was named National Freshman of the Week. Virginia S Anthony Harris was named National DB of the week.

    • Dabo Swinney, of Clemson spoke about the team needing to improve despite the huge victory over Georgia. Swinney spoke about how RB Rod McDowell had persevered through having a brother serving in Kuwait and his mother moving to California, and how "proud" he was of McDowell. Swinney was especially pleased with his team's front 7 against UGA but also said the secondary needed to "improve communication." He said the victory over the Bulldogs was "more a victory for the program then the conference."
    • Jimbo Fisher, Florida State's Head Coach was pleased with his opening game win over Pittsburgh going into a bye week. He was especially pleased with his kicking game and getting so many young players playing time, thus helping the depth. On Jameis Winston's running, he said they encouraged him to take an approach "First Down, Touchdown, Get down." And that Winston needed to be "smart" when scrambling. Fisher was happy with Winston's "poise and presence" as well as his accuracy. Despite his DE's having a relatively quiet game, he said he was not "disappointed at all" in their play.
    • Randy Edsall, of Maryland was glad to beat FIU, but felt his team needed to clean up some things in order to defeat Old Dominion. On the program's financial issues he said "that is someone else's problem" but that he would try to help by putting a quality team on the field and helping promote the program. Edsall mentioned that speaking to students helped, and that 9700 students attended last week's game. On his defense, he expressed concern in containing dynamic ODU QB Taylor Heinicke, and the experience of the Monarchs offensive line and receivers.
    • Scott Shafer, of Syracuse began by saying he "liked how his team competed" despite the loss to Penn State. Shafer said that he was pleased with the play of QB Drew Allen, especially his poise. "We had a few dropped balls and missed routed by the supporting cast." On Allen making his first start a senior, he referred back to former Cuse QB Greg Paulus following a similar route, and said the situation made both "older freshman." He expressed concern in facing Northwestern this week and their versatility on offense. Shafer said that establishing the run was important but that "every game would present unique challenges" and that offensive variety was important. On facing back to back Big Ten opponents he felt "it would help us in the long run."
    • Jim Grobe, Wake Forest's Head Coach said that he was happy to defeat Presbyterian and that his team "made some typical 1st game mistakes." He was concerned about the team's first road game because of the youth of his squad. (10 true freshman played in week 1) On star WR Michael Campano's hamstring injury, Grobe said he would be "ready to go" on Friday night at Boston College. He called his team a "work in progress" offensively, and that they needed especially to improve the run game. On former Wake LB Aaron Curry who was cut this week, he said he has never coached quite the combination of a "great player and emotional leader" and that injuries hurt Curry's career in the NFL. Grobe added that while at Wake, Curry "flat out dominated tight ends."
    • Paul Johnson, of Georgia Tech expressed disappointment having a bye this weekend, wanting to continue his team's momentum. Looking ahead to Duke in 2 weeks he referred to how close the games between GT and Duke had been recently. On his team's huge victory over Elon and being able to play so many players, "it was good for moral." Johnson mentioned playing 7 or 8 A backs in Game 1 and that they were looking to get speedster Broderick Snoddy more involved in the offense.
    • Larry Fedora, North Carolina's Head Coach spoke about "regrouping" following the loss to South Carolina and looked forward to his team being able to play at home. He liked his offense's tempo in game 1 but felt that needed to execute better. He also felt his defense needed to improve tackling. On facing Middle Tennessee "they have beat some ACC teams" and they would not come into Chapel Hill "big eyed." He gave his offensive line an "above average" grade against SC, especially given starting 2 freshmen, but noted the need for continued improvement. On players faking injuries to slow down up tempo offense, he said "I would question the ethics of it" if a coach was instructing players to fake injuries, but it was "impossible" to determine if a player was actually hurt.
    • Paul Chryst of Pittsburgh, another team facing a bye week, spoke about his team getting better after losing to FSU to prepare for their next game against New Mexico. On his secondary, he spoke about the LBs getting more "depth" and the DBs "jumping the short guy" as part of the problems against the Seminoles but that he expected significant improvement going forward. He felt QB Tom Savage "did some really good things" but that he "needed to clean some things up" and also that he was quick to recognize some of the mistakes he made coming to the sidelines after drives.He also said he loved the QB's demeanor. Chryst said his team came out of the game "pretty healthy."
    • Frank Beamer, Virginia Tech's legendary skipper, said that making progress was important to his team following the loss to #1 Alabama. He felt his team had practiced well this week, and was not concerned with a let down against Western Carolina following facing the Tide. In response to the dropped passes by his WRs, he said they were "getting extra work" in practice, and that the guys who had dropped passes had made many tough catches in the past, and he expected improvement in the area. In the game he was most happy with the performance of his defense "we really flew to the football and tackled well against quality people." He reference how last spring ESPN offered the Hokies out of the game against Bama but they chose to play because "It was right for our fans and right for our program."
    • Mike London, of Virginia spoke about starting the season with the challenges of BYU and Oregon. He mentioned that catching the eye of 2014 and 2015 recruits was a major factor, and building the brand of the ACC as another big reason for the aggressive scheduling. On facing Oregon's potent offense, "it's a scheme and a system they have been running so long, they have it perfected." He also complimented the athletic ability of the Ducks and said "they are as good as advertised." London praised the poise of his own QB David Watford but mentioned that he had things he could improve, including ball placement.
    • Steve Addazio, of Boston College, talked about the physical nature of his team but that their execution needed to be better. Addazio then expressed respect toward Wake Forest and their coaching staff. He talked about their option in the running game and the ability of the Deacs defense to create turnovers as areas he was especially concerned with. On the similarities between Campanaro and his own star WR Alex Amidon, he mentioned both were great competitors, ran great routes, and hard workers. When asked about who would emerge as a compliment to Amidon he said the team had options but they were working on it. "We don't have a deep experienced receiver corp." On QB Chase Rettig "for us to have success Chase has to play well."
    • David Cutcliffe, Duke's Head Coach said his next opponent Memphis was much improved, and were an experienced group up front. He was also looking forward to seeing how his team handled the challenge of playing the Tigers on the road. He was happy with his kicking game, and said he defensive line was much improved over a year ago. He was also pleased that the Devils played "a clean game." On the state of the program, Cutcliffe said the key as long as he has been in college football was to compete in the league. He added, "To play well in the ACC we need to play well right now against non conference teams."

    • Dave Doeren, of NC State mentioned that he felt his team played well, against Louisana Tech and that they looked forward to the challenge of playing Richmond, adding that the Spiders led the nation in turnover margin last season. He did feel his team needed to "tackle better." Doeren also liked what QB Brandon Mitchell did before getting hurt and that Pete Thomas spelled him well, and Thomas needed to distribute the ball well and "not win the game but not lose it." He said that he also hoped running the ball and being physical would open up one on one match-ups down the field.

    Be sure to check in every Wednesday for weekly updates from the ACC Coaches' Teleconference.