A few tid-bits from a couple of player interviews today. On a defense that returns a lot of talent, redshirt freshman cornerback Charles Sawyer and junior college transfer end Wayne Dorsey will get their licks in. …
(What’s been your most notable improvement in the conditioning program?)
<p>Strength in the hands. When you put your hands on a receiver, when you have to bang on them. It helps the safety. Before, I would get a bang on them, but the receiver was still running. Now I can get a bang on them, and they hesitate for two or three seconds. That helps the whole defense, doesn’t just benefit me.
(What was it like for you to sit out last year as a redshirt?)
It was tough at first. Then I sat down and coach Vaughn explained everything. You want to play, but at the end of the day you really have to learn. It’s a big step going from high school to college, and we had a great defense. I don’t know too many people as a freshman that could play a skill position on the defense.
(With the loss of talent at defensive end from last year’s team, do you feel a pressure to acclimate and contribute quickly?)
I wouldn’t say pressure. Pressure is not a word I would use. It would be the smartest thing to acclimate myself to what’s going on and get on the same page with everybody else that’s been here. I wouldn’t say pressure. This is what I’ve been doing for a long time. I don’t think it’s pressure.
Everyday is a learning experience. You take everyday’s lessons and build upon them. So I think more, as I got more mental reps, I got better every day. The things I wasn’t seeing in the beginning I see now. Just like going through summer camp, everyday will be a learning experience, and hopefully at the end I’ll be a better player than I was at the beginning.
(What were the most important things you learned in the spring?)
The system, No. 1. The whole defense. We didn’t run a four-man front at Gulf Coast. No. 2 was the physical nature of the SEC, and also just the effort you have to bring everyday.