Riggs Loving New Defense

Sophomore cornerback Cody Riggs seems to have adjusted well to a new football staff and a new defensive scheme. Riggs will be on display Saturday with his Gators teammates in the Orange and Blue Debut and is having a good time adjusting to the new football staff at Florida and the way they do things defensively. Riggs is ready to build on a pretty strong freshman year.

The new Florida defense is still an attacking style, but with more plays to learn and different terminology, the guys have been busy soaking in everything as they try and play without hesitation on the field. Cody Riggs says it is all coming to him pretty quickly.

"I am loving it," Riggs said last week about the new defense. "It's a little bit different, but I adjusted pretty well to it so I am having fun.

"I am getting better every day. There is a lot of stuff to learn, a lot of new defenses, but football is football. It is the same concept in every defense. "

Travaris Robinson is earning a reputation as a tough coach on the field. According to Riggs, Robinson wants to make sure his guys know the value of hard work.

"He is a high energy guy," Riggs said of Robinson. "He likes to have fun with us. Yet at the same time he likes us try and work harder than everybody, so I like him a lot."

Head coach Will Muschamp is also very involved in the secondary, maybe more than any other unit on the team. Riggs says the head man is very fair and strong with his approach.

"He's a high energy guy," he said of Muschamp. "At the same time he will pull you to the side and tell you what you are doing wrong away from your teammates, instead of in front of a meeting, so you pick it up a lot faster."

Riggs had a pretty good freshman year and we saw many big hits from a guy that is now packing 180 pounds on his 5-9 frame. He's a little bigger, but has never worried about being a small guy in the secondary. Muschamp also has seen what the ‘little' man can do.

"I heard that my whole life, he said about being small. "If you watch film you will see I will come up and hit anyone. (Muschamp) saw what I can do and told me he likes how I stick my head in there."

He wants to improve his aggressive play from the outset of the play.

"Last year I didn't get my hands on people as much as I wanted to and I have to do better than that," he said. "I was a little nervous last year and this year I am a little more settled down."

Riggs also believes the defense can be better than I was a year ago, even though it was a top ten defense in 2010.

"Hopefully we do better than what we did," he said. "Obviously we messed up a little bit last year, so hopefully this year we do a lot better. I definitely look forward to making more plays this year."

There is also a lot of good competition at cornerback and a lot of guys are vying for the one spot opposite of all-American Janoris Jenkins. Jenkins is missing the spring recuperating from injury, but still helping the young guys out.

"It is very heated," Riggs said about the battle for the one spot. "Nobody knows who the starter is opposite of Janoris, but we are working hard for that spot.

"Janoris talks to me about different techniques and things and how to better myself as a corner. I learned different mind games (from him) to get at receivers…whether or not you are going to jam them or not, just to get in their head a little bit."

Elite size or not, Cody Riggs is one player that will be in the hunt to be on the field as much as possible.

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