Press Conference: Virginia Tech football coach Frank Beamer
FRANK BEAMER: You know, we’ve got quite a challenge. Duke is a football team that plays a lot of different things on defense, fronts, coverages, and plays them well. Offensively very efficient, extremely well-coached. Special teams, punter seems like he’s been there forever and kicks it out of sight. I really think David Cutcliffe has done well, had great coaching jobs over a period of time. I’ve seen Duke really change who they are and what they are and how they play over in my period of time here, and it’s a credit to everyone there at Duke and Dave that — this program is for real. They’ve got really good players that play well. We have total respect, that’s for sure, and we understand we’ve got to go
win it. They’re not going to do something to give you the game or help you win it. You’ve got to go do it yourself. We understand that perfectly. We know the task at hand. Questions?
Q. I was curious, so much of the credit that Coach Cutcliffe gets at Duke deals with his offensive background. They’ve been very good defensively this year. What do you see from that unit that’s different?
FRANK BEAMER: Well, again, I think the number of things they do and do them well. Generally speaking, if a team is doing a lot of things, you say, well, the good thing is they’re not going to be able to execute and somebody is going to be out of place and there’s going to be a hole in the defense, and you don’t find that here. I mean, they’ve got a lot of things going on, and they execute extremely well. So I think that’s kind of the amazing thing about their defense.
Q. You are in my eyes one of the best coaches in the history of college football; how impressed are you with how the Duke football program has evolved over the years under Coach Cutcliffe?
FRANK BEAMER: Yeah, I really am impressed. Like I said, I’ve seen him — the change from the time I got started here playing Duke to now playing Duke, and you know, how you see them is quite a bit different. You know, today they’re an established team, a team that goes to bowl games. A team that’s got good players that play very, very efficient. Like I said, I really think Coach Cutcliffe has done one of the great jobs ever at a university and changing that university and the way they play.
Q. I was hoping you could tell me how you feel Brandon Facyson has played so far this year now that he’s back and healthy.
FRANK BEAMER: I think he’s working his way back. There about a week ago, I said, I really think he’s not quite back to his former self, but you know, he’s made a couple big-time plays here lately. I think he’s getting closer all the time. And that really will help. We lost two guys out of our secondary that, as I said, will probably play in the NFL, and trying to bring those young guys along, and Brandon is a key guy there. He’s a mature guy that kind of can help those other guys along. But he needs to be playing at a high level himself. I think he’s getting there. I think he’s kind of where we thought Brandon Facyson should be.
Q. How has he been impacted with (Kendall) Fuller being out?
FRANK BEAMER: Well, I think the whole team, when you take the guy out that — when Fuller was there, you put him on the backside receiver and then play coverage with the other guys, and now he’s trying to be that backside guy. His role has totally changed, plus the help that he used to get, he’s out there on an island a little bit now. It’s changed things around pretty good. Really Fuller is a guy that probably affected our whole football team, what he meant to our team and leadership and just everything about him. Losing him kind of affected everything.
Q. I just wanted to ask you about the talk about Travon McMillian and the difference he seems to have made at tailback and how he’s coming along.
FRANK BEAMER: Yeah, we’re really fortunate. We’ve really got some good tailbacks in our program and a couple that’s not playing as much, you’d like to be able to play them. But it’s just a situation where Travon has come on and been an explosive guy. He can make people miss, but he can outrun you. He runs tough. A couple times last week, put his head down and went straight forward. So I think he’s really a quality back, an all-around back guy that’s only going to get better. Where he is right now, he’s got a big future in front of him.
Q. And I know you named Michael Brewer your starter, but last year when they were all healthy, you still used (Brenden) Motley at times as kind of a walk-out quarterback. Will we still see both quarterbacks?
FRANK BEAMER: Yeah, I think Motley certainly did well in Brewer’s absence, and he’s a talented guy. You know, he can throw the ball well, but he’s also a real threat as a runner, a big guy that’s a tough runner. Like I said earlier, he doesn’t seem to outrun people, but he has a way of getting around them. We need to figure out a role for him, too.