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Quotes: Duke 35, Navy 7
Courtesy: Duke Sports Information
Release: 10/12/2013
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Duke Head Coach David Cutcliffe
On having no turnovers and minimal penalties in the game:
“No question it was clean football. Those things and also what I talk deeply to our squad about was winning the battle on third downs. I believe we were 10-of-16 and they were 5-of-12. We converted a fourth down on a field goal fake and missed one early that could have been costly. It was our cleanest game and the best game we’ve played since I’ve been here in my opinion.”

On the defensive effort:
“Don’t think Navy’s not a good football team. They’re a good football team. They’ll beat a lot of people. But we were where we needed to be and we didn’t give up many big ones. We contested plays. We made them pitch the ball early if they were going to pitch it. We hit the quarterback multiple times. We tackled with a little more fierceness. We used our open date well defensively I thought and I’m really proud of what they’ve accomplished.”

On Anthony Boone:
“The beauty of Anthony is that he had no idea that he was going to start nor did we until Brandon Connette, who had been hurt at the end of the week in a bizarre accident, just said he can’t go. We thought after Brandon practiced yesterday he would be able to play and then it was worse today, and he just said, ‘I can’t go’. I’m proud of Brandon Connette for being honest with us. And then Anthony just slipped in like he hadn’t missed a beat … I mean 31-of-38, that’s just ridiculous.”

Is this the team that you’ve talked about seeing in practice:
“Absolutely. And we’ve done it periodically all year. You don’t come back like we did against Pitt constantly without that kind of skill level. You hit the things, you don’t turn it over. We don’t turn it over four times against Pitt, we win by three touchdowns. You can’t be that hard-headed. You’ve got to play clean football and we’re capable of doing that. If we don’t do it next week, we’ll struggle again. So the key is consistency, and I’ve said that all along. And that’s what we’re hunting and the only way I know to get that is to continue to practice every week at an extremely higher level. I didn’t say a high level. Nothing stays the same. You’re either getting better or you’re getting worse and we’ve got to understand that as a program. And that’s hard when you have a little bit of success. Everybody wants to get excited and happy. I’m happy too, but I’m also realistic enough to know we better go back to work.”

On facing Virginia next week:
“Yeah it’s huge and we’re going up there, and now we’re on the road in the ACC, and we need to respond like a good football team. It’s going to be a very hostile environment regardless of what happens with Virginia today. It’s going to be a very hostile environment. We all remember the last time we were there and we got to go up there and play exceptionally well to win.”

Duke WR Jamison Crowder
On playing mistake-free, penalty free football:
“I want to give a shout out to Matt Skura. I did fumble one but he managed to wrestle the ball and get it. So thanks to him. But I think today, offensively, we did what we wanted to do. We limited our penalties and turnovers and were able to execute and get a win.”

On his role in Issac Blakeney’s touchdown:
“That play I had the corner over the top and the safety kind of goes with me and Issac goes under. Everything worked out and he was able to put it in the endzone.”

On players like Blakeney stepping up:
“With Issac, that’s potential we knew he already had. Today he was able to display that. We’re happy he was able to go out there and make those plays.”

On the momentum the team can gain from this win:
“We’re just trying to win ball games so we can get more on track going into ACC ball. Today’s win was a good win going against a good Navy team. We’re just happy that we were able to get the victory and hopefully next week we can continue the same.”

Duke OG Dave Harding
On the benefit of QB Anthony Boone’s experience:
“Anthony has mastered the offense really and has a great command of everything that’s going on back there. He has a feel for what Coach Cutcliffe wants in terms of speed of the game and getting plays snapped pretty quickly. He did a great job today coming in off the injury and just picked up really where he left off.”

On the quick pace of the game:
“Anytime you can increase the number of times you have a chance to score, it improves your likelihood of winning. So the more snaps we can get off the better. And then as far as big guys up front, we know that our conditioning will start to take over as the number of snaps increases. So to be able to get rolling like we were today was definitely something fun.”

On the team’s overall performance with a limited number of mistakes:
“I was really proud of how we played in all three phases of the game. Executing a fake field goal was something that was fun to see. The defense was really playing really lights out, especially in the second half. Offensively, I don’t think we had any penalties and that’s always something that we’re focused on. So I was really happy with the way we played. Obviously there’s always something to work on and we know that our competition keeps getting better and better as we continue through the end of the season. We’ve got to keep improving, but I’m definitely happy with the performance today and what we have to work with going forward.”

Duke LB Kelby Brown
On handling Navy’s offense:
“We kind of had an advantage because we played Georgia Tech first which ran a really similar offense. So coming out here, it was a lot like that game. It’s fun. We like playing these teams. Luckily not everyone runs it. But I had fun out there.”

On how offensive rhythm can carry over to the defense:
“It’s just momentum across the board. When we can trust our offense to go out there, have a nice long series and go all the way down the field and score, we know that our job is to stop them and they can’t win. So essentially that’s what happened today and it gave us a lot of momentum throughout the game.”

Navy Head Coach Ken Niumatalolo
On his team’s performance:
“We got our butts whooped, all the way around. We got outcoached, we got outplayed. It’s been a long time since we’ve been beat that bad in every phase. Offensively, we sputtered. We had some drives in the first half that we didn’t capitalize on that hurt us. They got ahead and they stayed in their groove. We couldn’t get them off the field on third downs. Special teams we’ve been solid to this game. We didn’t play a very good game.”

On special teams play:
“We had some penalties on special teams. It’s just a tough loss for our program, because we were thoroughly beat. They took us to the woodshed and got after us. We’re a tough team. We have some resilient kids in that locker room. Our only choice is to come back and to keep playing.”

On following up last week’s game against Army:
“We try our best to move on and press forward. We played pretty well last week. We knew we were going to play a good Duke team. That wasn’t our best effort. A lot of the credit I have to give to them, too. It wasn’t that we didn’t play well, Duke played well.”

On areas of improvement:
“Early on, neither team had much momentum. That penalty on the field goal hurt us. [The penalty] took points off the board early in the half. There are things we can work on. Our big emphasis this week was third down, both converting on offense and getting off the field on defense.”

On the decision to kick a field goal on fourth and one in the second quarter:
“We probably should have gone for it. It was still early in the game. My only thought was that we had driven so far, I wanted to come out with some points. The game was kind of teetering back and forth at that point, and I wanted to make sure that we came away with some points. It still felt good. We were down 14-7, as bad as we played in the first half, not in my wildest dreams did I think we could play worse in the second half.”

On quarterback Keenan Reynolds:
“The standard for him is high. He’s done some great things. Nobody is a worse critic then himself. He recognizes this. There’s a lot of responsibility on the quarterback. That’s the nature of the beast.”

On Navy’s kicking game:
“Normally you can walk away from a game with some bright spots. The kickoff team did well. The kickoff return team did well. And we have a guy that’s been solid punting, I mean he punts the heck out of the ball, but the problem is we’re still punting. It was one of the worst days for Navy football in a long, long time.”

On quarterback Anthony Boone starting for Duke:
“Both guys have been playing well. Boone has been hurt, but he had been playing well. You have to give the kid credit, he got injured and he came back.”

On Duke’s pass protection:
“They did a nice job of protecting and competing. Even with all of this stuff, we still have a chance to come out in the second half. We got the ball to start the second half and we sputtered. We need to take a look at the tape and keep pressing forward.”

On backup quarterback Kody Akers:
“We’ll look at our backup quarterback situation. It’s one of the many things we need to work on after today’s game.”