Christian Ponder Q & A

In two years of Florida State football, Christian Ponder has played in only one game. Due to a stellar work ethic and intelligence , Ponder will challenge incumbent Drew Weatherford for the starting quarterback role come this spring. On Tuesday, Ponder sat down with NoleDigest to share his thoughts on mat drills, recruiting, spring practice and much more.

NoleDigest: Can you talk a little bit about mat drills so far?

Christian Ponder: It's been longer than usual, with it being 12 days this year. It's always tough, it's never easy. Everyone's working hard and getting better. Over the past few days we've been getting graded and there hasn't been a lot of zeroes. Everyone's definitely getting better, getting quicker and faster.


ND: On getting a perfect score during mats on his birthday.

CP: If I had to celebrate my birthday doing mat drills I might as well have celebrated with that. I was just feeling it that day. It was a good day.


ND: What are your expectations for spring practice?


CP: Do everything I can to earn the starting spot, it will be tough being that it is Drew's senior year and Drew's been here for so long. Drew's always getting better, always in the weight room, always looking stuff over to get smarter. It was a tough year last year in the first year of the offense; it was a tough year for everyone trying to get to know everything. It'll be tough to pass a guy like drew, but I'm going to try my hardest to earn the starting role.


ND: What have you learned from Drew?

CP: He is definitely one of the hardest workers I have ever met. He has such a great work ethic and everyone feeds into and off of him. He has definitely passed some of his skills down on to me, especially his social skills. Drew's a great player and a great guy.


ND: Take us through a timeline per say at the Virginia Tech game last year, before you went in, during and after.


CP: At first I had no idea I would even be going in when the game started, you know no one knew Drew was going to get hurt. I didn't even realize I was going in until our quarterback grad assistant started yelling at me to warm up and get ready. Then, the butterflies hit me and were flying around in my stomach hardcore. Looking back now, we should have won that game. I was a bit nervous to start but after my first few plays I got my feet under me and I got my bearings straight. I made a few inexperienced mistakes that I shouldn't have, but it was a learning experience and I took a lot from it.


ND: What part did you have in the 2008 recruiting class? Did you host anyone?

CP: I hosted Josh Gehres, I showed him around campus and I showed him around town. Hey, I'm one for one in recruiting so that's good. I would like to say that I was pretty good at it, being I've been here longer than other guys have my age, what with me being an early enrollee with Myron and all. I can bring a lot to recruiting and hosting guys I think.


ND: What do you think about the fast start that the 2009 recruiting class has gotten off to?

CP: I'm a little shocked myself you know, what do we have 6 already? It's a little surprising especially at Florida State, normally the coaches pull out all the stops during the last month and that's when we land all of our guys. I'm happy though, we got a great bunch of guys that will be here this summer, and how it's shaping up a great bunch of guys for next summer. We're definitely on the right track here.


ND: How have the early enrollee's (Nigel Bradham, Vincent Williams, Terrance Parks) faired in your eyes so far, with you being an early enrollee two years ago?

CP: They've come along a lot, you can see the first couple of days, during mats especially, that they were having a tough time. Nigel has gotten significantly better though. They've all gotten a lot better, a lot bigger and a lot quicker.


ND: Plans for this spring break?

CP: I'm going home, I plan on waking up at about 2 o'clock every day, finally get to sleep in.

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