Washington Adjusting Well On Defense

Cornerback Demond Washington talks about the adjustment to playing defense.

Auburn, Ala.--Playing both defensive back and running back at Mississippi Gulf Coast College, Tallassee native Demond Washington was thought to be getting his first shot on offense for the Auburn Tigers but an injury to Aairon Savage and depth at running back caused a position move before he ever took the field.

Working at cornerback his first practice, Washington has gotten a crash course at the position from Coaches Phillip Lolley and Tommy Thigpen as well as Head Coach Gene Chizik to try to get him as ready as possible to make an impact this season. The junior said so far so good.

"Everything is going pretty good," Washington said. "As a team they are treating me well. They are showing me the ropes so it's going pretty good."

During the recruiting process Washington was very diplomatic in stating he would play either offense or defense but that he preferred offense. Now on the other side of the ball, he noted in the end it's probably the best thing for him and for the team.

"It is a great move," Washington said. "I'm learning from the older guys. The coaches tell when we to go in and are teaching me things. It's going pretty good.

"As a team I think we can get better," he added. "I think I can help a little bit. I'm just worried about the team right now."

Saying that the speed of the game and the tempo at which things work has been his biggest adjustment, Washington said he did a lot of running over the summer while waiting to find out when he would be eligible. Because of that he said he's in good shape but admits he didn't lift nearly as much as he's found out he should have.

Still Washington is pretty physical as far as cornerbacks go and that should pay dividends this fall as he's expected to be one of the players in line for playing time in the secondary. Because of that he's needed a crash course in SEC football, something given to him by senior Walter McFadden.

"It's great," Washington said. "Walter is a great guy. He's not only a leader off the field but on the field he shows us the ropes, how to do things and how not to do things."

With his history as a running back and also a return man, Washington is also getting a look as both a punt returner and kick returner for the Tigers along with a host of other players as the coaches try to find a playmaker. Washington said for him it's something he enjoys and he hopes to add it to his list of roles this fall.

"I like punt return and kick return," Washington said. "I still have some work to do there but the coaches are helping me out."

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