Q&A with Reggie Merriweather

"I'm more like a Terrell Davis or Emmitt Smith type of running back. When I get into the open field, if I don't shake with you my first move, then I'm coming after you- that's my philosophy," running back Reggie Merriweather told CUTigers.com Tuesday.

How do you feel about backing up Duane Coleman at this point?
Merriweather: I'm not worried about anything like that right now, I just want to get on the field. He might get a couple of more plays more than me, but I'm not worried about that, I'm just trying to help out the team in any way I can and make big plays.

Coach Bowden has talked about the I-formation this year, is that your preferred formation to run the football?
Merriweather: Back in high school, we ran a one-back set or the I-formation all the time with two tight ends. Our coach really didn't believe in the shotgun. But I love it. It's great running out of the "I" in those power formations. Duane comes from the shotgun, so I think between the two of us that's a great combination.

This offense had some success against Georgia last year, do you guys take away some confidence as a result of that?
Merriweather: We put up 28 points, but last year's team doesn't even compare to us this year. We've got a strong running game and we have the capability to put up more points. We've got a nice running game, and Charlie is ready so we should be good to go.

From a team perspective, the goal is to win the game on Saturday, but from an individual perspective, what would be a successful afternoon for you?
Merriweather: My standards are kind of high. (laughing) Back in high school I used to put these little notes in my shoes and everywhere else that I'd want 200 yards rushing and 2 touchdowns minimum. That's just how I feel. In college, I haven't really played yet so it may a little different. To me, I've just got to make big plays. Make big plays- that's the key.

A lot of people have talked about how the offensive line has worked to get tougher and stronger. Can you talk about how those guys are looking so far this fall?
Merriweather: Nathan Bennett, Dukes- those guys have the chance to do some great things. It's amazing that they are all so young and able to come in and get the job done. Greg Walker, Tommy Sharpe, and William Henry are doing a great job as well, and we've got some other younger guys in the mix. I'm just ready to see those guys block and get after somebody.

Talk about your running style to the fans that haven't seen you play a lot.
Merriweather: I'm more of like a Terrell Davis or Emmitt Smith type of back. When I get into the open field, if I don't shake with you my first move, then I'm coming after you- that's my philosophy. Between the tackles my vision has gotten a lot better, and when I get into the open field if I don't get you with the first move, then I'm definitely coming after you.

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