Brandon Heath: Making Contact

Redshirt freshman safety Brandon Heath, who was sidelined by a broken foot last fall, spoke with about his return to full-contact practice on Monday.

Brandon Heath's college career didn't start the way that the former Florida Top 100 prospect had planned. After signing with the University of Louisville in February of last year, the 6-foot-1, 215-pound safety arrived in The 'Ville two months prior to the start of fall camp with hopes of earning playing time as a true freshman.

Just a few weeks until the start of preseason drills, Heath broke a bone in his left foot, sidelining him for the entire 2006 season. Instead of joining close friend and fellow freshman free safety Latarrius Thomas in the Cardinals secondary, Heath spent the year rehabbing the nagging injury.

"That was tough," Heath said following Monday's practice. "I just kept working out knowing that I'd get back out there eventually."

That time came on Monday. After limiting Heath to individual drills and workouts with the U of L trainers during the first week of spring ball, head coach Steve Kragthorpe gave the okay for him to resume normal practice activities.

Heath spent the first few
days of spring practice
working with trainers
"We kind of eased him into last week with a few individual drills, but held him out of the scrimmage because we didn't feel like it was fair to him to throw him in there after he had just come back out," said Kragthorpe. "Hopefully, he'll have a good week of practice and we can get him some good valuable reps on Saturday."

He had a pretty good start to the week. Working with both the second and third teams on Monday, Heath made a play for the ball while working in goal line situations and came up with his first interception of the spring.

"It felt good to be back out there," Heath told "I'm about 85% right now. I'm going full speed and I didn't feel any pain at all today. The coaches told me to come out if I felt any pain, but I didn't have any problems."

Hopeful that he'll be able to participate in Saturday's scrimmage, Heath is focusing on improving in a few key areas throughout the remainder of the spring practice period.

"I want to play with confidence and stay healthy," said Heath. "I want to play hard so I'm ready to contribute in any way that I can this year."

He's also looking forward to the moment that he logs game time alongside Thomas.

"We're actually roommates," said Heath. "He's helped me out with a lot of things. We've helped each watching film, but he's helped me understand what it's like mentally out there. How crazy the atmosphere is on the field and how it can get so loud you can't hear the calls. He‘s given me the heads up on a lot of things."

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