Brown got Acclimated During Spring

The Florida secondary was a unit that came into spring practice under much scrutiny, but after a strong performance in the Orange and Blue game, some of the anxiety has subsided. The group still has plenty of room for development and maturity, but Chuck Heater and Vance Bedford have them moving in the right direction.

Part of what has helped with the improvement of the secondary is depth. Both the safety and cornerback positions are full with able bodies, which provide competition throughout. Last year, a freshman early enrollee Joe Haden came in and stole the show. Now that Haden is considered to be a veteran, a new pair of early enrollee corners – Jeremy Brown and Janoris Jenkins – are looking to make the same kinds of strides Haden made last season.

Brown came to Gainesville from Orlando Boone High School and summed up the spring workouts.

"My first practice out here, things were moving a little fast and I just wasn't adjusted," he said. "But with every practice, I felt like things slowed down and started coming to me. Things became more natural and I started playing off of instincts and I got real comfortable."

Brown rooms with Jenkins and the two have developed strong relationships with the returning corners which has proven to be beneficial.

"Janoris, we get a long real well," Brown said. "All the defensive backs, Joe Haden, Wondy Pierre-Louis, Markihe Anderson, those guys have some experience and have helped me learn the coverage and helped me become more acclimated to things."

One thing Brown didn't have to get acclimated to was the speed in Gainesville. Playing cornerback, speed matters most, but having visited UF practice so often and also competing against the nation's top team Miami Northwestern in the Florida 6A state championship game, Brown is used to dealing with speed.

"The speed is what I expected," he said. "This is the SEC and the University of Florida with some of the fastest people in college football going every day. As I'm out here more going against these guys one-on-one, things are slowing down and I began to play with the speed, too."

During the recruiting process, Brown developed a strong relationship with Heater who coached the corners for the last three seasons. But Heater's move to the safeties left Brown under the tutelage of new assistant Vance Bedford, and Brown looks forward to his future with Bedford.

"Coach Bedford has been great," Brown said. "He's taken my whole game and fine-tuned it. He's taught me a lot of stuff in just a few practices and to think that I have my whole career with him, I look forward to being with him and being taught by him. I can't wait to keep learning. Everyday I have an open mind and am willing to learn."

Brown plans to add more weight during the offseason after adding weight during the winter workouts. It was one of the many benefits that resulted from his decision to early enroll.

"I got a chance to come in here and put on about 12-15 pounds," Brown said. "I'm going up against these receivers and I'm excited about the fall and moving forward with things."

Questions or comments? Contact FightinGators.com's Chris Chmielenski


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