President Says Leadership Important Up Front

Auburn defensive lineman talks about his football team's spring training as the Tigers prepare for Saturday's spring game.

For Gimel President and Auburn’s other defensive linemen there has been plenty to learn since the start of spring football drills.

The redshirt junior has been learning assignments for both the 4-3 and 3-4 fronts with a new coordinator, Will Muschamp, calling the shots for the 2015 Auburn football team’s defense.

President, a starter last year, and his teammates will show Auburn fans some of what they have been learning on Saturday at Jordan-Hare Stadium when the Tigers play their annual A-Day intrasquad game. Kickoff is set for 1 p.m. CDT.

“It is a lot more physical this year,” President said of his team’s practices. “We have to hit a lot more than we did last year.”

Saturday’s practice, the 11th of the spring, included a scrimmage of around 60 plays at the stadium. President said the defense and the offense both had good moments.

“I think the scrimmage went pretty good,”?said the junior, who is getting some work at the “buck” position in the 3-4 front, a spot that is a combination of an end and outside linebacker.

President noted that he believes the defensive players “held their own” in Saturday’s scrimmage, the second of the spring, but noted the offense “did a lot better” in scrimmage two than in scrimmage one a week earlier.

Last season as a sophomore President made 18 solo tackles with 12 assists, five tackles for loss, one sack and six quarterback hurries.

He notes that he is bigger and stronger than he was last fall, checking in at six-foot-three, 264 pounds. “That is right in the range where I want to be in the fall,” he said.

President makes a tackle during his sophomore season.

Asked how the defensive front is doing as a group this spring, President said, “We have some down days, we have some good days, but that is college football.

“We are looking to find our leaders who can lead the pack,”?he added. “We have got a couple of them. Dontavius Russell is a pretty good leader. As a whole group, we need more than one.

“Also, Davonte Lambert (knee injury) is a leader, but he is hurt right now and he won’t be back until the fall. Other than that we need to find more leaders.”

The Tigers will return to practice on Tuesday and have another workout on Thursday prior to the A-Day game.


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