Losing a first round linebacker (Lawrence Timmons) to the NFL the Noles are looking for someone to step up and take the leadership position. Meet Geno Hayes. Geno was phenomenal until a knee injury hindered his 2006 campaign. Hayes looks to get back to his former self this season since he is 100% healthy. Hayes has been working hard under Coach Stroud's new condition program but, he has also been improving another important aspect of his game. "I've been just watching film. I've been studying the game a lot this off season". Now that Geno is looking at as a leader and a star on the defense this hasn't changed him one bit. "I'm still the same old guy. I have a lot of added responsibilities. If anyone has questions I gladly help them out and if they do something wrong I'll point it out and show them the correct way" says Hayes. So far in off season practices both Hayes and best friend Marcus Ball have been vocal and lead by example for the younger guys like Kendall Smith and Maurice Harris.
Along with studying film this off season Geno had to endure a change in position coaches. Even though Florida State lost Coach Kevin Steele to Alabama in the off season they received an upgrade when a familiar face returned. Coach Chuck Amato has brought a new attitude to linebacker core. Hayes explains the difference between Coach Amato and Coach Steel "Coach Amato taught us to be more physical and use our hands more. We need to be more enthusiastic on the field more too." Along with becoming more physical on defense Coach Amato is also an advocate of intensity. Coach Amato's main goal for this off season is to bring the intensity up and bring back the feel of the old Florida State defenses. Hayes is also adapting to the new offense installed over the off season "I see they are game planning around us more. I see more zone blocking. There are more under routes and cut routes. They are trying to stretch out the defense to open up the big play." Hayes said. In the off season Geno set his goals high "My goals are to win a national championship, ACC Championship, and whatever accolades come after that whether it's All-American or All-ACC. My main goal is to win" explains Hayes .So what can we expect out of #10 this year? "The best and nothing less."