Portis: We have to Open Offense Up
Nothing like a bad sushi dinner after a long day of work. Anyway, Ralph Friedgen said Josh Portis had called one play wrong against Delaware, but Portis told me, “No, I didn’t. The receivers lined up wrong, and I didn’t call a timeout.” Portis also talked about his desire for the coaches to open the offense up and take more shots down the field. Here is some more of the interview I had with Josh Portis, the man coaches call a “freak of nature”:
“I tried to pop it a couple times. I had the option to throw, based on the defensive coverage. But every defensive coverage I saw, the middle was open, so I checked plays. It seemed like every play I had was running, but I had a passing option, too.
“I got my feet wet for a little minute. As the season progresses, my confidence will build. The first game is out of the way for everybody. Everyone was eager to play Delaware, but eventually someone will have to emerge as a leader on offense and defense. I feel like that is the main concern. And I am looking to do that on offense.
“Someone will have to emerge and take this team on their back because you have a lot of leaders out there, but it is always that main person who is that guy. Many schools in the ACC and the SEC have people on the team, other than the main person on the team, look at Clemson, look at Florida. With me, it kind of comes down to getting comfortable and just playing. They are trying to work with me on that. It’s not about me, it is about the team.
“As a good quarterback, you make others around you better. At the same time, you need that supporting cast around you. There is so much that goes into it. From a fan standpoint, he says, ‘Oh, he missed the play.’ But did the receiver cut the route? Did he take too long to run the route? From an outside perspective, he is like, ‘Oh, he made a bad throw.’ But you have to make that throw.
“It is going to come a time when I will have to drop back and throw the ball. It is a different game when I drop back and everything is open. Then the defense has to account for two things, me running the ball and me throwing the ball. I was watching a lot of games over the weekend, and Juice Williams from Illinois did that, excuse my language, a hell of a job, giving playmakers a chance to move the ball. That’s what we have to do. We have to open that thing up. We have to take shots.
“For the first game, as a guy who has seen the best, 14-7, I’m kind of disappointed myself. We have to just blow people out of the water. It wasn’t like we couldn’t get the points. We had the points, every time we got into the red zone we struggled a little. Missed three field goal kicks. I told everyone on the sideline we can’t get down on him because we need him later in the game or the season.
“I expect a little more touches or plays this week. We’re going to look at it as the week goes on. It’s all about winning, and that is all I am about. In the ACC, you have to come prepared every week. Everyone thought I was in there just to run the ball, but that wasn’t the case. But I had to take what the defense gave me or coach would yell at me. So that is what happened.”
Posted by: ckstevenson | September 3, 2008 8:45 AM | Report abuse
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