Auburn's Kris Frost Ready For His Opportunity

Auburn redshirt freshman linebacker Kris Frost says he's ready if called upon this weekend against Mississippi State.

Auburn, Ala.—While the Auburn defense struggled in week one to contain the explosive Clemson offense, redshirt freshman linebacker Kris Frost could only sit and watch as coach Brian VanGorder's defense was forced to use five defensive backs and just two linebackers for much of the contest. Because of that Frost didn't play a single snap on defense and was instead relegated to special teams duty.

One week later Frost is hoping that his number gets called as the Tigers travel to Starkville to face Mississippi State in the Southeastern Conference opener for both teams.

"It's all up to the coaches, it's all Coach VanGorder's decision on how ready I am," Frost said. "I definitely feel like I'm ready to move in and start working. It all starts in practice. How you perform in practice is going to tell how you perform in the game. I'm ready to get out in practice and learn a whole lot about Mississippi State and what different things we're going to do with them defensively."

There is little doubt that Frost is ready to show what can do on the field after sitting out the entire 2011 season with an injury. Now bigger and stronger, Frost is one of several young linebackers such as Justin Garrett and Anthony Swain that coach Gene Chizik said could get more playing time as they continue to progress in the defense.

"We need to get them into the mix, and again, last year was a game where it was 90-some-odd plays, which is what we had last week," Chizik said of facing Mississippi State. "If we can get off the field on third down, hopefully it won't get to that, but it may, and if it does that's when you really have to have that rotation and have guys that can go in there and play 30 snaps if they're not a starter. That's what we'd like to get to. Having the ability to do that is big."

Taking strides forward on defense isn't just the goal of Frost and the young linebackers, but for the entire group after giving up over 300 rushing yards and 500 total yards in the loss to Clemson. Watching the film as a group Frost said the defense saw exactly the problems and is determined to get things corrected.

"What we always showed was aggressiveness and getting to the ball and trying our best on every play," Frost said. "The effort was there. Just like coach Chizik told us, whenever the effort is there you can do anything. That's something you can't teach is the effort and will to win. We definitely have that and now we just have to touch up some stuff and get our whole defense together as well as our offense. I feel like we're going to have a very successful season."

After moving to the weak side behind Daren Bates early in preseason camp, Frost is back working on the strong side at the moment and Chizik said that's where they would like to keep the athletic linebacker so he can concentrate on just one position. Making strides and learning more and more every day, Chizik said he's seeing the former wide receiver making a move in recent practices.

"I think he's had a really good last week and a half of practice," Chizik said. "He's having fun out there, he's flying around. He's improving, again the mental part of the game, the focus of executing the defense is his challenge right now. It has nothing to do physically there. He has to improve."

Getting ready for his first true road game as a player, Frost said that if and when his number is called this weekend he'll be ready.

"I'm ready and I know I'll be ready when it comes time to play Mississippi State," Frost said. "Playing Clemson and watching them and watching their speed and being able to just get that first game out of the way and see how a college game operates and being involved on special teams, now I'm ready to step up and show a bigger role whenever they give me that role. I'm ready to do my job."

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