Buck Ortega Q&A

Buck Ortega is a sophomore tight end from Gulliver Prep in Miami. Ortega came to Miami as a quarterback but was switched to linebacker before switching to tight end in spring practices of this year. His versatility has been an asset to the Hurricanes and Ortega is enjoying a solid season as a contributor on special teams.

How is the season going for you?

I am having fun at tight end. I just have to continue to work on my strength so I can contribute there. I am having fun on special teams. I love being on the field. I was hurt last year and that really bothered me a lot.

How has it been for you switching from so many positions since being at Miami?

It's been rough at times and a bit frustrating learning a new position. But, I'm happy. I'm happy to just being on the field. I love the game, being out there and able to run around. I love game days. There's nothing better than being on the field helping teammates. Some people ask ‘do you care that you are out on special teams and you don't get much attention?' I could care less. When I see Roscoe (Parrish) and Antrel (Rolle) run back a punt. That just gets me happy for them seeing them go crazy.

What does it mean to you to be a Hurricane?

Just look at our record. Look at what we've done. Look at how much work we put into the summertime. It's a whole different story and a whole different world.

How is your relationship with your dad?

He doesn't get to come to too many practices now because he is still coaching my brother in high school. He came during two-a-days. My grandmother films all of our games and he's always asking me about certain things and he gives me tips. He's 100 percent football. That's what he breathes and thinks. He loves it and tries to help me when he can.

What has been your most memorable moment so far here at Miami?

Probably the Boston College game because of our punt return. We had a lot of big plays and it was a lot of fun out there. It was fast and just seeing Roscoe out there. Blocking for him is real fun on that punt return team. He sets up a lot of blocks.

What did you see in Sean Taylor during high school?

We came to Gulliver our sophomore year after our football season. Our first football season together was our junior year at Gulliver Prep. He was hurt and had minor injuries so he didn't get to play in very many games. I knew and my dad knew since he was the coach at Gulliver. My dad and I would talk that this kid is incredible, he has so much God-given ability. But a lot of recruiting things and newspapers didn't see him because he didn't play in that many games. So he wasn't that highly recruited or hyped in his junior year. I knew it was a matter of time before he would blow up. He had a few things with his hitting ability like his head was on a track and would zero in on someone's chest. His closing speed was amazing.

Christopher Stock is a Staff Columnist for CanesTime and can be contacted by emailing him at stock@grassy.com.

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