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October 3, 2013

Q&A: Dave Doeren breaks down Wake Forest



NC State head coach Dave Doeren met with the media for the final time this week to preview his Wolfpack's upcoming game with Wake Forest. Everything he had to say after practice is below:

You've already mentioned Wake's nose tackle Nikita Whitlock a few times this week, but can you expand on what he does well?

He uses his hands, he's quick twitch, he plays hard, he's a good athlete and he's been playing a long time. His game experience and game recognition is at a high level.

You mention that he's played a long time, they've got a lot of guys who are up there in seniority, a lot of seniors. When you play an experienced team do you think, 'well they're going to eventually come together?'

In your head you would assume that the more experienced team that you play, probably the more continuity and success, but they're also missing some parts. Everybody is at this time of the year, just due to injuries and whatknot.

I'm sure anybody that is not getting the results they want would be frustrated, but I know their players are going to play hard. They've got a lot of pride in that program, Coach Grobe has built it the right way with redshirt seniors, but they're young at some other spots. I think that may be the difference maybe, just across the board, there are more freshman playing for them than people are used to seeing. And we have the same issue on our team, we've got a lot of young guys, so at times, you have young mistakes. That's part of the deal when you play your freshmen.

How would you say the week of preparation has gone with you getting ready for your first road game?

We're excited about the road trip. It's the first time you go together on a bus and go to somebody else's stadium. I think you see a lot about your team when you get in those surroundings, so I'm looking forward to the challenge.

It's the first of your four games against in-state opponents and your first exposure to this atmosphere.

Yeah, it's really rare — not only to have that many division I teams in one state, but to get to play them all in one calendar year. We're excited about it, it's one of our team goals and this is the first one that we get to play, so we'd like to start that four game series off with a win.

The team goal you mentioned being a state championship?

Correct.

The Wake defense seems like they force a lot of turnovers, is there any one or two things you can attribute that to?

Well they play hard. They're sound. Usually when you have a decent pass rush and sound defensive coverages, you're going to get balls thrown into zones where people are breaking on it. They do a nice job, they've been playing the same defense for a long time over there, so their kids understand what to do and why and how. You've got to be sound in how you run your plays offensively and obviously, you've got to be sound with your ball security.

How important is stopping the run against them?

It's paramount. Their pass game hasn't been great for them this year, so we've got to make them one-dimensional as a defense.


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