Carr not content with performance

Sidelined last season by a shoulder injury, cornerback Deveron Carr has come into fall camp ready to earn and maintain a starting job. Thus far the redshirt sophomore has been able to accomplish this, but still finds there is progress to be made.

"I feel like I'm getting better but I mean I'm still not satisfied," Carr commented following Wednesday's morning practice. "I made a couple of mistakes today that I've made recently in the past that I feel like I should have overcame but as today as we speak on practice, I mean, I haven't so I just have to get better every day, that's how I feel."

As far as progressing as a cornerback, going into this season Carr hopes to focus mainly on being a more aggressive. Arizona State's defensive unit and their success rely heavily on making open field tackles and with the number of practices left before game day slowly diminishing, this aspect of his game is Carr's primary focus.

"Actually being more physical and being better on the tackle and making better tackles," Carr said of his desired area of improvement. "Especially open field tackles, those are huge on our defense, especially on the back end, as a DB."

With the depth at cornerback better than it has been in previous seasons, the competition is fierce throughout the unit as each player jockeys for their position on the depth chart. Having experience as a backup player last season, Carr has an understanding for how quickly things can change.

"Starting with no depth or starting with depth," the cornerback stated. "I always have a sense of urgency to keep my starting position because I feel like I could always be better in everything that I do. I always can get better; I'm one of those guys as Coach Burns said, "never be riding stay green."

Starting three games for the Sun Devils in 2009 left Carr in a positive place last season before a torn labrum was discovered in his shoulder. Although the pain is not complete alleviated, knowing the difference between a sore shoulder and a more serious injury is key.

"I still do my rehab about two, three times a week," Carr remarked. "But as far as being on the field I'm kind of overcoming the injury deal because I've realized that its going to be sore, its going to hurt a little bit but it doesn't hurt to where I have to come off the field and I cant play through it, I mean its just a little soreness and pain. As far as it being torn, I know what it feels like if it's really hurt and I know if it feels like its sore and I can keep going."

Despite having a strong defensive unit last year, the Sun Devil squad underachieved with the offense taking the brunt of the criticism. As the offensive unit continues to progress in fall camp, the increase in depth in the wide receivers group has been a helpful challenge for the cornerbacks to stay on their game.

"I mean we always have athletes out there but it's just a little more diversity and a lot more depth," Carr commented regarding this year's Sun Devil offense. "Coming in as a corner and you're going against 1's, 2's and 3's, I mean it's always something to worry about on the 1's, 2's and 3's…through the whole depth (chart) because I everybody is an athlete, everybody is fast and I don't underestimate anybody. I just play and react."

During such a demanding fall camp schedule, it would be natural for the athletes to become discouraged or drained but when that happens, Carr looks to veteran Omar Bolden for the encouragement to keep pushing through the dog days of summer.

"He taught me to come out here with a better attitude," Carr said of his teammate, "I mean that's about it really, a better attitude. If I come out here and say, ‘I am not feeling it today,' sometimes he just says ‘you got to feel it today, you've got to' And that kind of gives me a little sense of urgency; it's like every other day, just get better today. That's how I feel."

The maroon and gold were ranked the best defense in the Pac-10 last season and are working each day to uphold that title. With the depth and athleticism throughout the unit, it is likely that the 2010 defense can only elevate their collective play.

"I'm not going to put any edges on it," Carr noted. "We are all athletes, we're fast, we play hard, we swarm to the ball and we hit hard, just like last year. I'm either expecting the same or better."


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