Everette Brown had an outstanding redshirt-sophomore season in 2007. He was the best defensive end for the Seminoles and was a constant force all season long. Coming into the spring, Brown really wants to focus on rounding out his game in hopes of have an even better redshirt-junior campaign.
"I need to work on my overall game. I need to sharpen up my pass rushing moves, getting off the ball and using my hands to get off my guy. Also I want to work stopping the run game. Coach Andrews always talks about that you have to be a complete end to be great. If I sharpen up I think I can get there."
On Saturday the Seminoles held their first scrimmage. For Brown it was great getting out there for the first time in pads since the bowl game. While spring has just started, he feels that he had a good day.
"I feel like I did pretty well, you know being the first day in pads since we just started. I came out and gave great effort. I had a couple decent pass rushes and put in the effort chasing the ball. But we gotta sharpen things up and get ready for the off-season. That's the big thing we're working on this spring. We have to come out here and continue to get better everyday."
One question fans have about this spring is how the offense will look in Year 2 of the new coaching staff. Brown says that so far, things have looked much different than they did last year. He feels the offense has the ability to make plays in the fall.
"Its different in the offense knows what the coaches want out of them. They know the effort expected and the plays. Last spring there was a lot of fussing, yelling and confusion because the guys didn't know what to do or expect. The guys have confidence and believe in what Coach Fisher's offense is doing. Running full speed you can see what Fisher has been doing."
Everette feels that being an upperclassman and a leader means setting the example. He thinks that the unit as a whole at defensive end is prime for a good season and that they are ready to go.
"We have Neefy Moffett and Kevin McNeil, and we are a good unit. I look at it like I am a leader, though. I want to motivate, give advice and lead by example. As a group I think we are a good unit as a whole and a good group overall. With hard work we will be ready to go in the fall."
While fans know what to expect from Everette Brown, an intriguing player coming into the spring is Taiwan Easterling. As a redshirt freshman and scout team player, Easterling showed the coaches that he may be a guy who they can depend on when the season comes. On Saturday, he gave a glimpse of what fans can expect as he looked good making several plays. For Taiwan, it's about continuing to get better. "We have to come out and play our best everyday. We didn't come out and do our best today as a group. Like Coach Fisher says we have to work on the little things like dropped balls and route running. We just have to watch the film and get better as a team. I think individually I did okay, but as a team we need to work harder."
Coming into the spring Easterling was expected to be a guy who'd step up to become a playmaker. With the loss of DeCody Fagg and Joslin Shaw, the Noles need the younger guys to make an impact this spring. Taiwan talks about that and about his relationship with Bert Reed.
"Coach Fisher and Dawsey talked about how I gotta work hard and know the system. I always work with Bert Reed and learn about what we're doing. With Bert, he tells me what I do wrong and I tell him what he' doing wrong. It's a big thing cause he tells me the most what to do. He ran the plays last year with them but didn't get in, so he knows them better than me. He tells me things that help me out and I thank him for that."
Easterling's good performance so far has given him the confidence in his abilities. One characteristic of his game is that he likes to talk on the field. He knows that he can only do that if he is playing well.
"We go after them (the defensive backs), telling them to stop holding. We just have fun with it. I know when to talk and not to. Bert and I were talking a lot. That's how I play. When I start making plays is when I can start talking."
Now that he is getting his chance to play and contribute to the team, Taiwan looks back at his redshirt season with appreciation for the opportunity to learn and become more prepared.
"Sitting last year helped because I got to go against the first team. That really pushed me. I knew everything would work out. I usually play but watching I learned a lot. Cody (Fagg) taught me a lot. I watch Rich (Goodman) because he gets off the line the best. I watched him in one on ones a lot. It helped me a lot because I have cut ups of the one on ones, and it really helps out. I just want to help the team and be a contributor. I want to get better and get ready to play in the fall."