Terrell Suggs – The Leader Of The "Coalition"

It's hard to say what the ASU defensive end is more blessed with – his knack for sacking QB's or his extraordinary communication skills. Suggs, who excelled in last Saturday's scrimmage, is on a mission for him and the "Coalition" – his new nickname for the ASU front four. In this candid interview, the junior talks about his performance this spring, as well as the expectations for his unit's play.

DevilsDigest: Terrell, with two weeks of practice gone by, how are you feeling?

Terrell Suggs: I'm feeling good. I had a little stinger last practice, but I'm 100% now. I'm ready to scrimmage today and have some fun!

DD: Compared to last year's spring practice, do you feel that the coaches are less teaching and the players are learning less and just playing the scheme?

TS: Most definitely. The guys trust the package more. Last year, the guys weren't too sure about the 4-2-5 in the Pac-10. This year we got a lot of new faces in the package, so we'll see how we play. The coaches are letting us play. Last year it was tighter with the coaches, and we were thinking a lot. This year we're just playing and having fun.

DD: You mentioned the scheme, and I wonder how different is it for the defensive line playing in this scheme compared to the 4-3-3?

TS: It didn't change much for us. As a defensive lineman, you just need to find the ball and get to it. We maybe do a little more alignments now. But it's a fun package, and I enjoy it.

DD: Last year you predicted 20 sacks for yourself. You ended up with ten sacks, which wasn't bad, but below expectations. What are your goals for this year?

TS: That's what screwed me up last year, predicting it. Last year I was too much focused on myself. This year, it's about the team. I just want to go back and play with the fire I had as a freshman. Just go out and have fun.

DD: Last year, did you feel that your play tapered down as the season went by?

TS: Kind of. I didn't really expect the double teams. I didn't really know that I would get all this respect. It was kinda of a shock, and I didn't react to it well. That's why I'm doing all spring, preparing for that double team. Now, I'm doing better with it.

DD: This year a lot of folks have serious doubts about the defensive line, especially the defensive tackle spot. How do you feel about the unit as a whole?

TS: We're coming together. We call ourselves "The Coalition". We got some young guys, but we have veterans like Brian Montesanto, who I think would now start at the other end. People think we're inexperienced, but we're pretty old.

DD: So I understand that this year you won't have any personal goals?

TS: No. I want the defensive line to play as a union. I want the whole defense have eleven guys playing with reckless abandon. That's how I want us to be playing at the end of spring.

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