Johnson: 'I'm Really Enjoying It'

Freshman safety Dontae Johnson met with media members following Wednesday's practice and talked about facing Georgia Tech's attacking style of offense.

Talk about the number of snaps you've gotten early in the season. Was that a surprise to you?
Actually, it's been mind boggling with all the snaps I've been taking as a true freshman but I'm just taking advantage of the opportunity that I have and trying to make the best out of it. I'm really enjoying it.

What have the coaches talked you about as far as improving and making sure you can keep taking snaps throughout the year?
They've just been telling me to play assignment football and play aggressive. If I do those two things I'll see more snaps and be able to be on the field much more.

Speaking of assignment football, how important will that be this week against Georgia Tech?
It's very important, playing against the option and Georgia Tech. They run it so well so you really have to be prepared and play assignment football because one person making a mistake can result in six points.

Is there a chance you guys will play some three man fronts to get extra athletes like yourself on the field?
I don't know, I haven't heard them talk about it. If we do that I would love to have the opportunity to go on the field and make plays. I want to help my team any way I can.

The last couple of weeks you guys have used more blitzes to attack both Central Florida and Cincinnati. How much of a change is it to have to face Georgia Tech's style of offense? Is it tough to switch?
It's just something you have to do depending on the type of offense. In certain ways this offense will dictate what we do defensively because of the option. We have to play sound football.

Talk about Joshua Nesbitt and how hard he is to replicate in practice.
Tobais Palmer has been running scout team quarterback. I think he's faster than Nesbitt so that helps us get to the ball a lot faster but once we get there we have to put a hat on him because he's a big fella. We have to make sure he goes down on the first contact.

Have you guys done anything different in practice regarding tackling drills?
We've been working on a lot of pursuit angle tackling drills for the open field and a lot of open field one on ones. There will be a lot of open field tackling one on one so we have to be a great tackling team this week in order to stop this offense.

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