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Steve Addazio’s Weekly Press Conference

Steve Addazio talks preparing for Louisville, freshman centers, and John Lamot in this week’s press conference.

NCAA Football: Virginia Tech at Boston College Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

COACH ADDAZIO: Good morning. All right. Well, we got a new week and a new challenge here. Going down on playing on the road against Louisville, Louisville Cardinals. Start with their quarterback. Doesn't need a lot of introduction, Heisman Trophy winner, Lamar Jackson, phenomenal athlete. Makes things happen with his arm, with his legs. He's electric. He's probably one of the fastest guys in all of college football and certainly a great player. Their running backs, Reggie Bonnafon and Malik Williams, really good players. They got some really good wide receivers, good skill players. And they're obviously very explosive and have the capability of doing a lot of things. Anytime you have a quarterback like that, you're different.

On defense, they have a new coordinator, Pete Sirmon. Can do a great job on defense. Their defensive front is very athletic. James Hearns is a guy that is a very productive player. And then, of course, their linebackers, Trevon Young, outside linebacker, excellent player. So they're physical. They're athletic. I think they play really, really good defense. And their explosive on offense. So enough said. Very, very tough opponent, very tough game on the road. And we gotta have a great week of practice simulating their styles on both sides of the ball, but we've been in a lot of tough games, played a lot of really good football teams. So we're just going to be playing another one of those, another really good football team. So gotta have a great week.

Q. (Indiscernible).

COACH ADDAZIO: Yeah. I mean, you know, obviously we've gotta do the best we can to contain him, and those two guys are certainly really fine players. Takes more than just the defense ends to contain this guy. But that'll be a challenge, trying to keep him in the pocket on third down and also in the read zone game where he reads the ends. And that's always a challenge. It's been a challenge for everybody all season. He makes a lot of plays and he's going to make plays in this game. And need to try and limit those plays and try to create some confusion and penetration and things like that.

Q. Just talk about John Lamot. He's now making his, what, second start?

COACH ADDAZIO: Yeah. Yeah. I guess this will be his second start.

Q. How is he growing into the position?

COACH ADDAZIO: He's doing a good be job. He's learning on the run here, how to play linebacker at this level, and he's done some good things. He's still a work in progress, and he's gotta keep growing. We gotta keep him healthy. I'm not sure, you know, where you go from there.

Q. (No microphone).

COACH ADDAZIO: Well, I mean we brought Davon Jones over to defense and we're working on getting Davon ready as fast as we can, but there's not anybody behind him that has a lot of experience, no.

Q. How do you get a kid to shift gears like that?COACH ADDAZIO: It's hard. It's a change. Takes a little bit of time. That's why he's been in training with this right now. It's not going to happen overnight. But Davon has a real uncanny football sense to him, and he's kind of a natural ball guy. So I think, you know, he'd be able to go in there and be able to make some plays.

Q. Is Anthony able to stretch the field a little better?

COACH ADDAZIO: A little bit. Yeah. He's a little healthier.

Q. Deep ball in the offensive package?

COACH ADDAZIO: Yeah. The week before he didn't practice during the week and that was a little bit harder deal. I think this past week I think he practiced all week long and we were able to get the ball, push the ball down the field a little bit. He threw some really nice balls, and that'll continue to improve.

Q. Just talk about Ben in the middle, shotgun snaps. He's starting to take on role.

COACH ADDAZIO: Yeah. I mean you can see he has great ability. He's learning how to become comfortable at that position. He's still a freshman, true freshman, and so there's going to be a bunch of things along the way that are a little bit unexplicable, but they happen. At the apex of the offense right now you're talking about the quarterback. You're talking about the center. You're talking about one of the tailbacks that's playing a lot of snaps. Those are young guys. And when you play with those guys, anybody -- doesn't matter who you are. If you have one of them or you have three of them or four of them, I mean what happens is -- like we have Kobay out in the ^ receiver position. So what happens is there's going to be a learning curve. And so those things will show up from you, and what happens is they can add to your level of inconsistency.

Q. Talk about Jackson, obviously what makes him who he is, but is there anything else that stands out about him?

COACH ADDAZIO: Well, he is -- his acceleration. I mean I've been around a lot of spread quarterbacks in my career and I've coached some of the very best. But his acceleration is extremely unique. I mean that guy's -- he can pull away from anybody. He's got flat I would call it in football world, world-class speed and acceleration. He's got a rifle arm. I mean he can flick that ball. I mean he's got great arm strength. So that combination is unbelievable. He just has this uncanny ability to make people miss and run by him. I mean he's faster than you possibly can imagine that he really is, I think. When I saw him live last year, I was like, wow, this guy, he can flat move now. I mean and it's just different. And it's like that against everybody. I mean, you know, he's a unique guy now. That's why he won the Heisman Trophy. The Heisman Trophy stands for the best player in college football. Well, everybody can have whatever opinion they want, but he's certainly if not the best one of the very, very best there is in college football. And that's why. His athleticism is off the charts.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports