A very frustrated Coach David Cutcliffe met with the media after Duke’s 20-17 loss to UNC.
“You hate to see a game end like that for players that fought their heart out,” he said.
Of the jump pass that was intercepted in the end zone, he said, “We’ve used it sparingly before. It’s been really good. We had it all up and ready the last three weeks. It didn’t work. No mystery. It just didn’t work. Nobody’s more disappointed than all of us are. It’s a tough way to end a game. It looked like someone got to Deon’s feet. It just didn’t work.”
Cutcliffe said it’s worked before, most recently in 2017 against Georgia Tech.
Cutcliffe seemed to take issue with UNC’s defense mimicking Duke’s cadence, leading to three false start penalties.
“That was them and their little shift and them shouting, ‘Go! Ahh! Go!’ We’ve got to handle that,” he said. “I guess maybe we need to start doing that defensively.”
Of a postgame confrontation with a UNC player, Cutcliffe said, “We were trying to get people back where they belong. There were too many staff that aren’t our staff. I don’t care for those circumstances.”
Cutcliffe took issue with questions about Duke’s ball security.
“Don’t get hit in the back on a missed block on a sack,” he said. “We work ball security every freaking day, every day. So we’re not gonna work it any different, if that’s your question.”
On passing up a 48-yard field goal to go for it on fourth down earlier on the drive, he said, “I didn’t think it was a good opportunity percentage-wise to kick a 48 yard field goal into the wind. As it turned out it was a good decision.”
Cutcliffe then ended the press conference and walked off.