north carolina press conference norkeithus otis
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North Carolina Press Conference: Norkeithus Otis

norkeithus ortis uncQ. Some disappointing moments last year from the defensive side of the football. Since spring practice, what have you thought about? What has the team worked on to get ready for opening day?

NORKEITHUS OTIS: I’ve seen a major difference. I’ve seen the guys working harder, watching film, teaching the younger guys, trying to get better each and every day.

Q. Talk about the way this defense has evolved, replacing the guys that meant a lot but building on what you’ve got returning.

NORKEITHUS OTIS: Those guys meant a lot to us, but as a defense we’ve got to move on. We have a lot of guys that’s ready to step up, for example, you have Drennon who played D-ends, you also have Jesse Rogers who also plays end to try to put pressure on the quarterback. We lost Tim in the middle. We have some guys Nazair Jones, Greg Webb. We have a lot of guys that’s getting bigger, getting better.

Q. Who’s really challenged you up to this point when you talk about spring ball? Who do you feel has really pushed you offensively to get better defensively?

NORKEITHUS OTIS: I would say Jon Heck. He’s one of our tacklers. He’s been getting better each and every day he’s been working his craft, trying to be successful. I’d also say the offensive line as a whole because in our defense we kind of try to do different stunts, and they’ve been getting better and working hard.

Q. What did the bowl win do for you guys in the off-season as far as morale?

NORKEITHUS OTIS: It gave us a whole lot more confidence going into spring ball, going into training camp. You know, training camp is coming up, so we’re ready.

Q. When you think about your freshman year and heading into your senior year, what was the personality of the teams then, and what do you think the personality of your team is today?

NORKEITHUS OTIS: I think the personality of our team now is everybody depends on each other. We play together as a unit. It’s not about me or him, it’s about us as a football team.

Q. Vic is an interesting guy. What’s it like playing for him?

NORKEITHUS OTIS: He’s a great guy. He teaches us the defense well. He wants everything to be fast. He wants us to play fast, play smart and play physical.

Q. Every coach will tell you you’ve got to take one game at a time, but if you look midway through the season scheduled, you see the Fighting Irish there at South Bend. Is that date circled in red for you?

NORKEITHUS OTIS: No, it’s not circled in red for us. Liberty is circled in red for us right now. We’re taking it one game at a time.

Q. Personal goal for yourself this year?

NORKEITHUS OTIS: Personal goal is to keep doing what I’m doing, try to be a better leader. We lost the voice of the defense. I’ll try to step in and I’ll try to be the leader this year. I’ll try to be the voice. I’ll try to continue to do what I’m doing, work hard.

Q. And have fun all at the same time, right?

NORKEITHUS OTIS: Yes, sir.

Staff/Wire

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