Interview with Defensive Coordinator John Thompson

Ack had a chance to talk with defensive coordinator John Thompson. In this interview, Coach Thompson discusses his system, the defense's performance at spring practice, the importance of good cover corners in his system, his staff and much more.

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Below is an interview with Coach John Thompson, the defensive coordinator for the Florida Gators.  Coach Thompson brings a very exciting style of defense to the Gators this season.  He is sure to put pressure on opposing quarterback's in a number of different ways and his ultimate goal is to create absolute havoc on the field for the offense.  Read on and find out his opinions on this upcoming season.

Ack: Are you ready to crank it up?
John Thompson: Yes, you know football coaches have cycles, season, recruiting summer and so forth. It can go pretty quick, but we are excited.

Ack: How much of your system is in place?
J.T.: Well we as a defensive staff always continue to refine what we do. We went back and evaluated spring practice and looked at what things give our players the best chance to maximize their abilities.

Coach Thompson coaching his defense at Arkansas.
(AP Photo/April L. Brown)

Ack: With so many questions going into the spring it seemed to go quite well?
J.T.: Our guys worked hard and showed the ability to want to learn and worked at it. Our guys showed a great attitude.

Ack: What about middle linebacker and particularly the play of Farrior?
J.T.: Matt had a great spring and has tremendous ability. He is so quick and smart he could play outside if we asked him to. Reid Fleming did a great job and will play a lot. Travis Harris did a nice job as well but will start camp outside.

Ack: What about the secondary and the ability to have cover corners?
JT: Keiwan had a great spring and seems to be ready for a big year. Cromartie is going to do well, on film two years ago he covered very well. He has lost some weight this summer and is  a super kid. If you have corners that can cover you can do so much in your defensive package. Marquis and Vernell did well and who knows, we may play 4,5,6 db's or maybe none at times.

Ack: Talk about your staff.
J.T.: They're great Coach Red, Odom Woodford all do a great job. All of us along with Coach Zook work hard to continue to make our defense better.

Ack: What will it be like having a good offense with Rex and so forth on the opposite side this year?
J.T.: Well we had some youth and injuries (at Arkansas) but it is going to be a good offense here at Florida that's for sure. We have to continue to try to get turnovers and negative plays and get the ball back for our offense.

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