'It's Hammer Time'

Linebacker Robert 'Hammer' McCune is the Cardinals starting linebacker and he recently spoke with ITV regarding his role at middle linebacker, his pass coverage abilities and the reserve linebackers.

Robert McCune (6-1, 240), better known as the ‘Hammer,' has become a fan favorite over his four years at Louisville. A junior this season McCune is now the starting middle linebacker for the Cardinals.

ITV: You have had to play as the backup middle linebacker to this point in your career, are you ready to step up as the starter?

Hammer: I feel great and looking forward to taking advantage of this opportunity. I am working hard and I am still learning the game. The coaches have been real good and I am just happy to be out there playing.

ITV: Is there a big difference from last year's defense scheme to this year's defensive scheme?

Hammer: The biggest difference is we are a more aggressive and attacking defense.

ITV: As the middle linebacker are you responsible for calling the defense that coaches signal in?

Hammer: Yeah, pretty much, but we all work as a team on defense. We are communicating out there and talking to each other as a team. I am doing whatever it takes to help the team and trying be a leader. With the guys around me that help me sometimes and we all just help each other.

ITV: You will be asked to cover the tight end or even a receiver on occasion, how do you feel about your pass coverage ability.

Hammer: I feel pretty good about it. I can run with the guys.

ITV: What have you been clocked in the 40?

Hammer: I ran a 4.42.

ITV: Recently ITV was there when you incline bench pressed 490 pounds. Is that still your all time best?

Hammer: Yeah, that is still my best.

ITV: How about the flat bench press? What's your best there?

Hammer: I did 535 pounds.

ITV: Has the defense been given the entire defensive play book or is there still more to come?

Hammer: I think we have put in everything in. It's more of a per game situation.

ITV: It's been well noted that you, Rod Day and Brandon Johnson are a very good starting linebacker core, how have the backup come along this fall and who are the second string guys?

Hammer: Brandon Johnson is being backed up by Jonathon Jackerson. He is a great athlete and a great guy. I feel like if anything would happen to Brandon, Jonathan would come in and step up. I am being backed up by James Greene. He is a senior linebacker and a great guy and he can also run. I feel if I went down he could come in and step up. Rod Day has a freshman, Deriontae Taylor backing him up. He is a dedicated guy and he reminded me of myself when I first came to Louisville. He is very interested in learning the game and the coaches really like how he hustles to the ball. He may make a mistake or two like all of us, but he is always hustling and that can make up for some mistakes.

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