Holliman a huge hit for U of L defense

University of Louisville sophomore safety Gerod Holliman has been a big boost to the Cardinals' with his improved play this season. Holliman has helped make the position folk were worried about heading into the season a strength after three weeks.

The position the new coaching staff at the University of Louisville was worried about the most heading into fall camp was safety.

But after three games that spot has been a major strength of the season.

Two big reasons are the play of strong safety Terrel Floyd and free safety James Sample, who joined the team just before fall camp and is a former player at Washington.

But perhaps the biggest reason - Gerod Holliman.

The 6-foot-2, 215-pound sophomore from Miami is tied for the lead nationally in interceptions with three and has made a few more huge plays.

"He has such a good idea of what we want him to do," U of L coach Bobby Petrino said. "He has great instincts and has really been playing well for us."

U of L defensive coordinator Todd Grantham said has "really come up big for us," and has shown major improvement since early in the spring.

"He works hard at it," safety coach Greg Brown said. "He's an instinctive guy. He sees things, he processes them and he reacts and he goes and that's what it takes.

"He's a guy whose always had talent. But he's worked so hard to put himself in position to make plays and it's really paid off big for our team."

Holliman had two picks and jarred loose a fumble last week against Virginia. He is fourth on the team with 11 tackles and has a sack and three pass deflections.

"I just try to do what I can for us to win," Holliman said. "I feel comfortable out there, just trying to make plays. (The staff) puts me in position to make plays."

Holliman will play in front of the home folks on Saturday at Florida International. He's from Miami Southridge High School.

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