Steve Addazio ACC Football Media Conference Transcript: Post NOT Spring Game

via Boston College Athletics on Facebook

The Eagles first year head coach talks the NOT Spring Game, Andre Williams, coaching his son and the status of Kaleb Ramsey.

COACH ADDAZIO: Thank you for having me on the conference call. Obviously, we're really excited for the start of football season at Boston College. We just completed our first spring practice and really had a great time getting the chance to know our football team and our football program and saw some young men with great attitudes, great work ethic, and a desire to really have success.

So it was an awful lot of fun. Good winter, good spring, and just thrilled to death and honored to have a chance to be the head football coach of Boston College. It's obviously a fantastic institution with a great football tradition. So now we have the task at hand of getting ready for a great season.

Q. I know you guys obviously had the unfortunate events in Boston, and I wondered if you could just first talk about how that impacted you guys and the school having to deal with that horrible situation last week?

COACH ADDAZIO: Well, obviously the school was closed on Friday, the day before the spring game. We were all kind of bunkered down and just following all of the events, trying to figure out what was best. We really felt that at which time probably around late afternoon that they hadn't caught suspect number two yet. And really, all of the law enforcement police officers have been working around the clock, and people were fatigued. It was like, okay, there have to be security sweeps. The school's not even open yet. We don't know if it's going to open.

But the overriding thing was we just didn't feel like it was fair to all of law enforcement and everyone to say, okay, amongst everything that's happened and everything that's continuing to happen right now, we're going to worry now about a spring football game? It just didn't seem appropriate.

There was just so much going on, so we decided to cancel that game, and absolutely knew then and continue to feel now there is no question it was the right decision.

In terms of football and in terms of our spring practice, we got a lot done this spring. I mean, really liked where our team‑‑ where we started and where we ended. I loved the growth that we had.

Quite honestly for the alumni and the fans and the energy to see the culmination would have been great. But really would 20 more snaps for the first team make that much difference? No. I thought we got done what we needed to get done. We also had a chance to walk off the field and walk out of the stadium, because we ended up having a day with the parents and the cookout, and we had a spring‑wrap up session. We walked out of there healthy and excited with a lot off energy and a lot of enthusiasm about Boston College.

Q. As you left spring, was there a certain area that you felt better about and felt you had kind of turned a corner in the spring? And then also was there an area you still have some questions about as you go into the fall?

COACH ADDAZIO: Well, what I felt great about is when I watched the development of our team from when we got there through the culmination of spring practice, this is a group of guys that really took really well to tough coaching, to accountability, to the concept that we need to be a real team and we need to be accountable to each other and build some physical and mental toughness.

I really felt like they really absorbed all of that and took to it. That was really a neat thing. In the installation of spring practice, the mental part, the new schemes on offense and defense and special teams, we've got really bright guys here, and I thought they did a great job of processing all the of that. So I thought fundamentally, schematically and team chemistry has grown quite a bit. I really enjoyed watching that development.

Now the things that concern me, our depth. I think we really developed our lineup front. I think we found a running back that really is a big, strong, powerful guy. I really, our quarterback, Chase Rettig had a phenomenal spring. He's a very accurate guy. You can just see it in him as a senior. You can feel that determination in him. I thought Alex Amidon had an outstanding spring. So those pieces on offense came. I enjoyed watching development.

Now on defense, I just think Don Brown came in with a new scheme and very aggressive scheme as Don is noted for. His enthusiasm, his passion, the staff's passion for the game you could see within our defense. Guys like Kaleb Ramsey up front, and Netty, and Steele Divitto and Sean Sylvia, and just some guys really stepped up. Kevin Pierre‑Louis, one of our linebackers.

You could really see the development on our defense. We have two passionate coordinators, Ryan Day and Down Brown and a staff full of guys that have a lot of energy and a lot of passion for the game. I really saw this team respond there.

Now depth, depth is a problem right now. At a lot of positions. So you're in that quandary of you've got to develop a tough, physical, hard‑nosed football team, and the only way to do that is to practice really hard. When do you that, you become susceptible to some injuries, and injuries won't be our friend because we don't have a ton of depth.

But if we can manage to stay healthy with the development of our guys and the influx of some young players that can help us, I think good things can happen.

Q. Do you think this team will look a lot different in the fall because you're the head coach now?

COACH ADDAZIO: Well, what I want to see this team look is I want‑‑ when you come to the game or you watch on TV, I want you to see a team that's physical, that's passionate, that plays like a team that's high energy. I want you to watch an attack‑style defense, and I want you to see a diverse offense, because we've got some play makers. I want you to see a balanced football team on offense.

You'll be the judge of what kind of football team that's going to look like, but that's what we hope to have ready for you in the fall.

Q. I assume before when you were talking about a running back, you were talking about Andre Williams?

COACH ADDAZIO: Yeah, if I did not mention that, that's exactly right. I'm talking about Andre Williams. I tell you what, I thought Andre had one of the best springs than anybody. The kid is a wonderful guy. I mean, he's bright, and he's a terrific person. But I tell you what, he's powerful, he's fast, he's a physical back, and I think the complement of that style of back with the development of our offensive line and the ability to throw the ball with Chase Rettig is a nice little combination.

Q. Are there the expectations any higher for him because Finch left? And I'm not sure, you mentioned depth as an issue for that position as well?

COACH ADDAZIO: It is. There's no question. But you know what happens is opportunities usually with guys that are competitive, someone will surface up. Dave Dudeck had a nice spring for us. He's probably one of the hardest working guys on our football team. We have a couple other backs rolling in here, freshmen coming in. So it is what it is. But Andre, I just really am impressed by him.

Q. What's it been like coaching Louie, and have you yelled at him more than you thought you would or less?

COACH ADDAZIO: Yeah, I mean, you know, yeah, I yell at him. I yell at everybody. It's been really a neat thing. Having‑‑ he's been around football all these years and programs that I've been at, but I've never had a chance to really coach him. So I'm enjoying him.

He's a guy that loves football. He's a guy that has a lot of passion for the game. He's still in the rehab phase of his shoulder injury that he had. But I've really enjoyed watching him. He's a very low‑maintenance guy. He's got thick skin. He can take tough coaching. His position coach Frank Leonard is very demanding, up‑tempo, high‑energy guy, and he just loves it.

So he's doing quite well, and I feel really fortunate to have a chance to spend this time with him. Because too far and away, when you're a football coach, you don't get a chance to see your own kids or your own son play and be around them. So I'm really going to enjoy that.

Q. What was your involvement with him previously? Were you able to watch huddle film with him? Did you have any kind of involvement with his career?

COACH ADDAZIO: At some point there towards the end of his high school career, right in that part there, I would have him come over when I was at Florida, and I would work with him a little bit on blocking mechanics and things like that. I never wanted to be a guy that was overbearing with any of my kids in sports. So I really wasn't at all.

But at that point he seemed to really want to be a Division I player so I certainly did get involved a little bit. I felt like I could help develop him fundamentally certainly in the blocking end. Then on the strength and conditioning end, you know, Mickey Marotti at the time and Frank Piraino who is with me now, we're such close friends, they're like godfathers to him. So that gave him a nice jump start into college football.

Then of course he had a couple of injuries, and it's nice to see him getting healthy again and having a chance to develop physically.

Q. I thought I heard you mention a while ago Kaleb Ramsey had a nice spring. I had thought he had used up his eligibility on some of the draft boards.

COACH ADDAZIO: He was granted a sixth year, and Kaleb had a fantastic spring. He's an elite defensive lineman. I mean, he's the kind of guy I was used to seeing in the SEC. He's a guy that's very physical, very powerful. He's athletic, and really just was very disruptive in the spring. So we have high expectations for him.

Q. Did he have an injury?

COACH ADDAZIO: Yeah, he was dinged up last year. I don't think it was anything major, but it was enough to keep him out.

Q. So he got a sixth year because of injury?

COACH ADDAZIO: Well, I can't remember which. He had been injured throughout his career, and I'm not sure which exact year he got that exemption on.

Q. But you're glad he's back though, right?

COACH ADDAZIO: Oh, yeah. Really glad he's back. I know he's a Pittsburgh kid, and he's just a really quiet guy, but a really good guy. Really excited to watch him have a good, healthy year.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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