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Duke 9, Boston College 7: Blue Devils Postgame Quotables

Head coach David Cutcliffe and others touch on the victory over the Eagles.

Mark Dolejs-USA TODAY Sports

David Cutcliffe on the emotion that goes into coaching and this team...

We are a team. That's the beauty of this. I realize people are going to say, well your offense this, and you know this...It's okay. You keep trying to get better. You keep working in a direction where your team gets better. Our guys believe in each other, which is such a great thing. At times we'll have to have kicking pick both groups up. At times the defense has certainly carried more than their weight and picked up the kicking game and the offense. And at times the offense is picking up things for the defense and the kicking. So the theme is we're a good team, let's just keep trying to become a better team.

Cutcliffe on having no turnovers...

There was no way, and we knew that going in, that we could turn the ball over. It's a game of inches, literally. They turn it over. We take it down to the one-foot yard line and then you don't score. Then you're going to hold them and then they hit a pass. It's so definitive there that it is a game of inches and we're going to find more and more and more of those inches and keep playing unselfish the way we are. And part of it is going to be truly taking care of that football. We made a big, big emphasis on that this week.

Cutcliffe on Ross Martin...

I had to make a decision against the wind there to kick that field goal. He didn't try to overkick it. He's confident in himself. I had another opportunity there that on hindsight might have wished... I thought we would pin them inside the ten. I probably should trust Ross [Martin] to get that 12. The difference when you're up by two is the five points don't help you, the field position helps you more if people were wondering why I did that. People will say the field goal beats you. I get that, but not with that field position.

Cutcliffe on the maturation of Thomas Sirk...

He had 18 tough completions for 195 yards and we had a few drops. We knew going in part of our run was going to be some of the throws. They played man-to-man. We have got to separate from man-to-man better. We have got to throw it more consistently, but Thomas is playing under tough circumstances time and time again. We're going to figure out the personality of this offense and that's part of it. We're not the same people we were a year ago. We made a decision against Boston College to spread the field because we didn't want to pack it in. And when we packed it in you saw why we didn't want to pack it in. The offensive line told me after the ball game...Matt Skura's played a lot of football and he said it was the best defensive line he's played against. That tells you something.

Cutcliffe on Jeremy Cash...

Jeremy Cash just loves to compete, loves to prepare, loves to play the game. The tougher, the better, watch him. The tougher, the better. You're just very thankful that you have a leader on your team that does it in every way. He's vocal and when he says something our players know he means it and he backs up everything he says. We couldn't have a better leader in the locker room than Jeremy Cash.

Thomas Sirk on the physical style of play...

It was physical out there. We knew it was going to be a physical game coming in, so I prepared for it. I knew I was going to have to stand in the pocket and make some throws today. Ultimately, we got some of those third downs completed, got the ball down the field while taking some hits. It feels good when you stand up off the ground and see the pass is complete.

Sirk on mid-game adjustments...

They were bringing a lot of pressure. You just had to identify their fronts. That was the biggest thing. They were doing a lot of things with their four-down front, three-down front and their Mike linebacker, walking all kind of guys around. Identifying the right people for the offensive line and the [running] backs to pick up protection.

Sirk on protecting the football...

You need to maintian possession against a team like [Boston College]. They run the clock down with their offense. The clock's running and you have to be very conscious of where you are on the field, when you can get good field position instead of forcing balls. When it's 3rd-and-16, do you really need the first down, because we have a great punter in Will Monday who can help us win the field position battle.

Dwayne Norman on the importance of each play...

Our coach really harps on winning the game on every play. You never know which play is going to win he game, so we have to go out there on every play and try to make a difference in the game.

Norman on the evolution of the game...

The offenses of college football are getting faster. Receivers are getting better. It's something of a new breed of players. Defenses need to adapt and get faster, while getting away from the big old linebackers who are not too mobile.

Norman on receivers coming across the middle...

That goes back to fundamental football and not getting locked in to just one thing on every play. You need to know your keys on every play.

Ross Martin on the importance of field goal kicking...

Whenever I step on the field for a kick, regardless of whether it's for one point after a touchdown or three points for a field goal, those points are vital. You never know what play in the game is going to end up winning the game. Coach Cutcliffe talks about that a lot, for any position. What play is going to win the game? Obviously it turned out that a second-quarter field goal was enough points to win the game this time.

Martin on the windy conditions...

There was a pretty stiff breeze from the hurricane coming through. It was one direction, so there wasn't too much cross wind. It was either helping you or hurting you.

Martin on every phase of the kicking game...

Coach Roper does a great job of hammering in how important field goals are. In terms of Thomas [Hennessy] and Will [Monday], even though we had a couple mishaps last week [against Georgia Tech], I had full confidence in them. I knew that was an anomaly. We don't have those types of plays very often. We had a great week of practice and obviously we had a great day today.