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October 10, 2011After the Demon Deacons (4-1, 3-0 ACC) defeated then No. 23 Florida State (2-3, 0-2 ACC) 35-30 players coaches met with the media for interviews.
Wake Forest head coach Jim Grobe
The team is really growing up aren't they Jim? "Yeah, I think so. It's a team that realizes with the competition we play you have to make some plays if you're going to win. We've just grown up a lot. We've gotten a little better every week, and you know how I feel about this football team. I just like these guys. They like each other. We've just got a good group right now."
On Chris Givens: "I asked him what are you doing getting hurt, and coming back in the game? Seriously, to see him take that shot over there on the sideline, come out, and then as soon as the trainers gave him thumbs up he's right back out there helping us win. It's great. It's good to see a guy having fun playing, and he's matured to the point that the game is really, really important to him right now. He's had some bumps and bruises through the first part of the season, but he's showing up every game."
What did you learn about your team's defense with the change of pace that [E.J.] Manuel brought into the game? "Honestly we didn't get some of the things that we had planned for all week. That's one of the problems for planning for two quarterbacks. With E.J. you expect a lot of boot and play-action, and a lot of option and power off tackle and those type things. The difference was when they put E.J. in the game we wondered if they would try to do that with a bad shoulder, so we were kind of able to look at it, and say okay we're probably not going to get a lot of option a lot of quarterback runs stuff. He's probably going to do the same stuff that he's done that [Clint] Trickett does. From that standpoint it helped us a little bit, but he threw some really nice balls today and did some good stuff, especially on that drive that ended the first half."
On Wake's depth on defense: "We've got a solid number one group, but we've got a really solid number two group. Now there are some guys in there you know guys like Mike Olson, Justin Jackson, Duran Lowe, Daniel Mack, there's some guys in there that are pushing those starters for playing time. There's no question about that, but that was huge today. We had to get Kyle Wilber out, because when they kept throwing and would get first downs he was tired. We had to roll that front some. I don't think we took Nikita [Whitlock] out very much, but most of those guys we had to get out. That's the thing I think our coaches have gotten confident in, not that we're two deep as far as guys that we look at as starters, but I think we're to the point now when we put a backup in we don't put him out for his mom and dad to see his wrist bands and his high socks. We put him out there to get the job done. Those guys know that. They know we're not putting them out there to just throw them a bone. We're putting them out there to win."
I bet you have 30 happy Floridians in there right now. "We do, we do. That was a pretty happy locker room that we went into, but I'm going to tell you what I don't think any of the 30 guys from Florida are any happier than the rest of the team. This is a football team they love playing football, and they enjoy wins. I don't think we've had a team that took the Syracuse loss any harder, but I don't think we've had a football team that has bounced back like these guys have from a loss that was that tough to start the season. I can't just say enough good things about our kids; not the way we played, but just a good, good feeling with this football team."
Wake Forest wide receiver Chris Givens
I guess Boston College was your ninth straight loss last year. Could you imagine that you could be here this quickly? "Honestly man we made it up in our minds back in January that this team was going to be completely different from last year's, so we were optimistic going into camp and coming out of camp."
What's lit your fire this year? "Everybody, it's just being around my teammates. We're always just hungry trying to complete our mission. We look it at like we're on a mission, and every team on the schedule is in the way. We're all just coming together, and playing as a team. We're just getting each other's confidence in practice. Every Saturday is just going out there and playing for each other."
Wake Forest outside linebacker Kyle Wilber
You said Brandon [Pendergrass] and I weren't good enough. What do you have to say now? "To them [the Seminoles], but for Wake Forest we're good enough here."
On pressuring FSU's quarterbacks: "Just resilience, we were going a 100-percent every play. I think we were tiring them out a little bit. I was trying to hit him with a speed rush. Everybody was trying to hit them with the speed rush, and then come up and under."
Florida State head coach Jimbo Fisher
On the game: "Very disappointing, very disappointing performance. The same issues. Five turnovers, you can't win a football game. Thirteen penalties, you can win a football game. We had opportunities. We had the momentum at halftime. We came out and totally missed a protection on the first play. Then we ultimately had a run on the goal line that we tried to cut back and bounce, which is a golden rule inside the five, you stick it. We got a safety and changed the momentum of the game and played from behind the rest of the game. We had opportunities to get back in the game. Had a couple opportunities, made a couple of poor decisions, made a lot of good plays. When we made plays, I think we had four 20-yard gains that were negated by holding penalties. Very disappointing."
On your defense being able to get stops: "We're not able to get off the field at the right time. As I've said we've played well on offense at times, we've played well on defense at times, and we've played well at special teams at times. What we haven't done is play well together. One side is not feeding off the other side. When one side is playing well, the other side is not getting stops. When the other side is getting stops and the offense needs to convert, we're not doing it. We're not playing as a unit."
On the "hunger" of your football team: "I don't think we weren't hungry. I think we were hungry. I think sometimes that's what we do, we try to hard. I don't think it's hunger. It's not effort. We play hard. You look at the film at the effort and the hustle, that's not it. We don't play intelligently."