Kenny Phillips Q&A

Safety Kenny Phillips is ready for his junior season.

How did practice go Thursday?

I think it went extremely well. It was our first time together, everyone was kind of ready to hit somebody and the intensity was great. Nobody slacked off since Monday because sometimes after the first couple days people would get kind of sluggish. It wasn't anything like that today, everyone was running around, flying to the ball, and having fun.

How's your hand?

I don't think about it. Coach doesn't really want us to talk about injuries though, so I have to keep quiet.

Coach Shannon specifically mentioned your name when he spoke about players possibly moving around. Are you trying positions other than strong safety?

I've played both free and strong. Sometimes I'll go down to corner too, just to get some reps. You never know what might happen. Last year I had to play corner in the Duke game, so I got a lot of snaps there. You never know what's going to happen. We're just trying to be ready for whatever.

What do you think about the change of pace in practice?

Everybody likes it. The tempo is really fast. Practice isn't just dragging along. We have a big clock that times us and everybody is just on point.

Are the position drills different from last year since you have a new coach?

Aw man, it's very different. We have a new coach, and he's a great coach, I can tell. He's bringing in a lot of new drills. Cone drills, agility drills, things that usually we don't do in individual workouts. He's crazy but he's trying to get the best out of us. He's working us, but he will get the best.

What's Wes McGriff's personality like?

He's a military guy. He's from the military and you know how strict they are, so that's what he's bringing here. He doesn't want any attitude and he wants you to always finish. He's all about effort and never missing a rep. There could be 30 seconds left, but he'll try to get us to do some extra work. He doesn't waste any time.

How is it having your former position coach running the entire defense?

It's better. He still comes in the meeting room and meets with us, and we know his door is always open. We don't see him as much as we used to, but he's still around when we needed him to be.

Is the individual preseason hype and even possible NFL Draft hype you're getting distracting?

Honestly, I'm not even worried about. I still have another year after this one anyway. Right now I just want to win a national championship, because that's what I came here to do. I'm not saying I don't want to eventually make the pros, but right now I'm just not worried about that.

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