David Cutcliffe: "We've Got to Be Mentally Tougher Than That"


Duke will look to get wide receiver Jalon Calhoun more involved in the offense, after the sophomore was held to one catch for three yards by Boston College.

“They played lot more zone, which was a little different than we anticipated,” coach David Cutcliffe explained. “They really put two bullets into him a lot at times, even playing zone. That made his releases difficult. They did a good job.”

Even if Duke can’t get Calhoun involved, they can do a better job making Virginia pay for the extra attention on him.

“When they’re spending that much time somewhere, you’ve got to be productive otherwise,” Cutcliffe said. “Tough day, it happens.”

The surprise on defense was attributed to a lack of game film on Boston College, who didn’t play a week one game. Virginia, Duke’s opponent this week, also hasn’t played yet this season.

“You don’t have a game going into this game to study,” Cutcliffe said. “That’s hard on the players. They’re going to face same thing next week. We’ve got to be mentally tougher than that. We’ve got to go in with a great plan. We’ve got to be about Duke, not about Boston College, not about Virginia. We’ve got to trust who we are and what we do.”

Duke’s plan also needs to involve finishing off drives with touchdowns.

“To finish drives, we’ve got to put our playmakers in position,” Cutcliffe said. “When the field gets smaller, it’s almost like playing playground or backyard football. You’ve got to make sure you put playmakers in the best position to score touchdowns. If you can’t run it in, the field’s smaller. You’ve got to have quality opportunities in the passing game. We didn’t get those done. Of course, when you turn it over, it doesn’t matter what you called.”