Frankie Hammond Trying to Improve

Frankie Hammond Jr. was the star of the Orange and Blue Spring Football Game with four catches for 131 yards and two TDs. That productivity stamped Hammond as the man to watch among the three redshirt freshman receivers on the Gator team. Now with opening day within sight Hammond is still trying to make an impression --- on receivers coach Billy Gonzales.

Frankie Hammond said he has bulked up a bit – he now weighs 180 – in an effort to better get off bump coverage. He also feels the added size and strength will help him improve in one of "Coach G's" most import areas, downfield blocking. Hammond says blocking way downfield is not something he has been called upon to do in the past, but he knows that it's mandatory if he wants to get on the field this fall.

Hammond showed his big play ability before last spring. He averaged almost 20 yards a catch as a senior at Hallandale High School. Florida is hoping Hammond can have that kind of productivity in Gainesville after losing their top two receivers, Louis Murphy and Percy Harvin. Hammond talks about fall camp and the progress he's trying to make.

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On momentum from spring:

"Coming off the spring I had a lot of confidence and I'm still developing as a player. Coming into practice I'm still having some M.A.s (missed assignments) and things I have to learn and get experience in. I mean practice is going good but there are things I need to get better at."

On the toughest part:

"Reading the defense because things happen so quick with blitzes and reading the safeties. Just being out there I have to get used to it."

On the veterans not having that problem:

"There are a lot of senior receivers that know, have been there and have seen the things. All the freshmen and sophomores still have a little trouble but we'll wet there. We're getting it."

On help from the seniors:

"They're helping us. Sometimes when I'm jogging out to the line I'm second guessing myself and they're able to spit it (their assignment) back at us and get us going."

On David Nelson in particular:

"He's really good. He knows every position and he's like another coach. If you have any questions about any position you can go to him and he'll give you an answer."

On going against Joe Haden:

"He's pretty hard because he's been there and he's able to read things. He's seen things and he studies a lot so he knows about reading routes and everything. It's kind of hard, but I try to change it up every once in a while."

On which Gator defensive back holds the most:

"They all have their little snag techniques, but a DB is a DB so all of them pretty much do the same thing. There are certain things they can get away with, but it's nothing to complain about."

On benefit of facing the Gator secondary every day:

"It definitely helps, but you never know what the game is like on Saturday. Our playing against a very tough defense coming back helps us get prepared but you never know what Saturday is going to bring so I'm just going as hard as I can so I'll be prepared at that time."


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