He came in as a cornerback, but quickly found himself buried on the depth chart behind six other players pushing for playing time.
Etheridge has been busy in preseason drills learning the assignments at safety.
He was moved to strong safety during the first week of practice as has been getting better since.
"It's been going great," Etheridge notes. "By me changing positions it's been hard, but I'm picking it up slowly. You've got to know more back there at safety. That's the biggest difference."
The 6-0, 191-pound freshman has been running with the second-team because sophomore Lorenzo Ferguson has been sidelined with a shoulder problem so he notes that there is a possibility of a redshirt season.
"Not too many freshmen DBs come in and battle for a position," he notes. "I've just been working hard every day. I came in with a mindset to show the coaches what I can do. I'm looking forward to cracking the lineup, but if I redshirt then that's the coaches' decision. It wouldn't bother me. I wouldn't mind if I redshirted or played."