Sawyer, from Cordele, Ga., is also one of the team's more personable players, an easy-smiling athlete who is, well, one of the good guys -- not to mention a member of the Seminoles‘ Unity Council. Each Monday Bryan will update Territory subscribers on the week's events. Bryan talks about preseason drills in this first installment.
"The young guys have been impressive. (Antonio) Cromartie has been doing a good job. Ernie Sims. Every freshman I can think of has been in the mix. Pretty much thrown in the fire right away. It's kind of intimidating for most guys coming from high school to college. I know it was from me. But these guys are taking it. … they've been here three weeks and they are like one of the guys. It's great getting to know them. We didn't skip a beat with these guys."
It was great going to coach Bowden's home (senior night). It was great getting a home-cooked meal. I can't tell you how much that meant to me, coming from South Georgia and eating with my grandmother and my mother all the time. They put on a great show. It was a great opportunity for us, as a group of seniors, to get together and sit down outside of football. We didn't even talk football. We shot some pool and hung out with Coach Bowden . Not too many people can say I went over to coach Bowden's house and sat down and had dinner with him. It was great.
"Yes, coach has been more hands-on. He's definitely not in the tower all practice. He's going drill to drill, seeing how everyone is doing. He's a real big stickler on little things. If you catch the ball and don't tuck it away right away, or if you don't wrap-up on a tackle, that's what he's looking for. The little things. I guess that's his main belief when it comes to a national championship team. …it's the team that obviously going to have the best leaders and the team that does the little things best. He's really good about bringing that out of everybody. He's definitely more hands-on. Even with the younger guys, he's getting down there in the dirt with them kind of makes them feel at home. It has been good.
"We are having fun. It's not like teams of the past, where we have a lot of pressure on us. Obviously, we put pressure on ourselves because we want to prove everybody wrong in what they are saying and what they think about our team this year. They obviously don't think we are going to do that well, which is fine. We are right where we want to be, and we are going to have fun along the way.
"North Carolina will be a good test. They are a real, good sound team. They will show us where we are at and what we need to do. We have to go up there mentally and physically prepared. It's a good team to start the season with."