Q. What are your impressions of what you saw out here today?
A. Well the great things are that we got some heat. So we had to go through some mental conditioning and scrimmage at the end. We are creating habits right now and it’s all about habits. Its practice 5 and we still need to clean things up. We are in no shape for game situations yet. Again it’s a cumulative affect and I like our leadership, like our mentality, but we still need to get tougher, and fight through some adversity things. The big thing is mental conditioning, mental toughness, and overall execution. We are still searching to find a receiving core that’s consistent day in and day out.
Q. Did you like seeing your guys live hitting today?
A. We did and we talked about playing with physicality. It’s the first time with pads and it’s a little bit different, then you turn the heat up. It was a great teach day, and being able to think under pressure, and try to practice at game speed. So I thought today was extremely productive.
Q. You mentioned a young wide receiving core and trying to find the right mix. How much is that put on D.J. (Woods) then to kind of be that guy because this year he is the guy, and how much do you think he can handle being the guy?
A. The big thing is that D.J. just has to work on getting better. He has done a great job of leading the younger wide receivers. He cannot put any pressure on it. You have to go out and enjoy, and do what you do. The great thing right now is that he is leading by example. He finishes everything, he is extremely competitive, and that will come. There is so much that goes into playing the spread offense, and no huddle offense when you are a receiver. The volume of running, and the work volume associated with the position. So it comes with time.
Q. We all know how good Isaiah Pead is. How do you feel about your other running backs progressing along at this point?
A. Well, they are progressing. Everything is being thrown at them. George Winn was a good special teams performer for us last year but now he will have more of a role offensively. So it is just the amount of reps and again the durability. Taking care of you’re bodies, it’s a physical position. George continues to progress. Then Akise Teague has been slowed by some hamstring injuries. Then Jameel Poteat, everyday it’s on the job training for him.
Q. Anthony McClung plays the same position as DJ Woods will McClung be able to get on the field the same time as D.J.?
A. Well we are going to put the best players on the field. Right now D.J. is actually moving around to the outside receiver. D.J. gives us the luxury of playing a multitude of positions within our scheme. So you will see D.J. more on the outside right now, and Anthony in the slot.
Q. What part of the football team do you feel is progressing the furthest so far the offense or defense?
A. Well it’s really hard to tell right now because it’s the first day of pads. Usually the defense is ahead of the offense, and the defense should be ahead. We have a number of returning starters there. I think the big thing is just continuing to teach the Bearcat way. Not being a soft football team, being a physical football team, nobody loafing, all the things that goes into the mentality of a football team and a football program. Again all we are doing right now is establishing habits.
Q. How much more focused do you feel your football team is compared to back to school right now?
A. Well I think this is a great setting because you come out here and all we have is each other. So you are forced to learn a little more about each other. You are here all time; learn to tolerate each other, and no clutter and distractions. So this is a great environment and atmosphere and the people here do a great job