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North Carolina

Davis praises ACC, addresses offensive line issues

Posted August 13, 2009
Updated August 14, 2009

— The ACC has been fighting for their right as a football conference the past few years.  Miami and Florida State have struggled in recent years, and Virginia Tech has been the league's only presence in a BCS bowl.  The ACC did take 10 teams to bowl games last year, which is something no other conference could say.

"I think it's extraordinarily competitive," UNC coach Butch Davis told 99.9 The Fan ESPN Radio. "We throw out there that 10 of the 12 teams went to bowl games ... you're always going to play teams that have enough confidence and pride to feel like they're knocking at the door."

Davis said that one of the biggest strengths of this conference isn't just the players, but the coaches. Mentioning Wake Forest's Jim Grobe, Maryland's Ralph Friedgen and Florida State's Bobby Bowden by name, Davis says that everyone in the conference respects each other as a coach.

"You have got to have your football team very well prepared on Saturday in this conference because the other coaches are doing the same thing."

On the field for the Tar Heels, the offensive line is clearly becoming an issue.  Tackle Carl Gaskins  suffered a torn ACL in Wednesday's practice and will miss the whole season.  Backup tackle Kevin Bryant decided to leave the program a day before.

Davis compared the offensive line to the wide receiver group in that it's a work in progress every day at practice.

"The depth of the offensive line, that's clearly an issue," Davis said.

He did say backup center Cam Holland is having a very good training camp.  He called him the strongest player on the football team.

One positive for the inexperienced players, according to Davis, is being able to have one-on-one battles in practice everyday with the likes of Robert Quinn, Marvin Austin and E.J. Wilson.  But he knows that experience only comes with time.

"It's gonna be a continuation throughout the entire camp and into the season to grow some depth and experience."

78 Comments

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  • TruthBKnown Banned Again02 Aug 14, 2009

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    You sure have some strange criteria for making your picks.

  • TruthBKnown Banned Again02 Aug 14, 2009

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    It's hardly begging when your team is bowl eligible. It's called "working out the details" because the ACC only has nine bowl tie-ins, and ten eligible teams. At 6-6, we're the 10th team, so we had to do some legwork to find a bowl.

    It's kinda stupid to call it begging, but have at it. You seem to enjoy it so.

  • shakennotstirred Aug 14, 2009

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    Great comeback. I'm glad you thought about it for 14 hours before sharing your deep thoughts with the rest of us...

  • thewolfman1978 Aug 14, 2009

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    Got to love how Blue Devil fans jump on the State UNC stuff come FB. Thanks for bashing the Heels but the Devils will get 2 maybe 3 wins in FB this year... you should move on to BB... 10- 11 that is lol.

  • unc1997 Aug 14, 2009

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    Considering that UNC is 12-8 in Carolina Friendly stadium, I'd give us a pretty good shot.

  • allaboutunc3 Aug 14, 2009

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    State fans are so stupid.

  • StunGunn Aug 13, 2009

    I agree that the ACC has some excellent coaches; how strong the conference is remains to be seen. State, Carolina and VT have already lost players to injuries, transfers and off-field "issues". I'm looking forward to a good season where the ACC gets bowl bids for 10 teams again. I'm sure Butch will have our offense ready. Go Heels!

  • shakennotstirred Aug 13, 2009

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    boohooohooo, State qualified just like UNC did, you have to win 1/2 of your games to qualify, end of story... The real story is State had to win their last 4 games to make the bowl game. UNC should be proud of theirselves losing 3 of their last 4 (and the 1 win was beating duke on a last second play). UNC could have had a special season but settled with a .500 record in the conference. What a powerhouse UNC has become when even their coach is making excuses before the season starts...

  • Tar Heels Fan Aug 13, 2009

    ...some earned it...others had their AD calling around begging for a game.

  • shakennotstirred Aug 13, 2009

    "RE: Davis praises ACC, addresses offensive line issues"

    Reads... Davis is really worried about the Wolfpack, but is thankful that enough of his players have left/been hurt/been arrested so he can already be preparing the fan base for a big letdown...

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