Q&A with Center Dallas Hendrikson

PISCATAWAY, N.J. -- Junior center Dallas Hendrikson is back in action after a gash on his snapping hand brought him out of Saturday's scrimmage. Hendrikson sat down with ScarletReport.com leading up to his first live action instead of Rutgers fans. Healthy after knee surgery, Hendrikson discussed his excitement for the spring game.

ScarletReport.com: First off, how is your hand feeling after that cut in the scrimmage?

Dallas Hendrikson: It's alright. I would have played with it in a game, but I went in and got it stitched up during the scrimmage. I've got it taped up pretty good and I'm wearing a glove. I did a little extra work to make sure I can snap and it worked out.

SR.com: Is part of that knowing how much the team is relying on you with other injuries?

DH: Definitely. It's just a cut and it's hard to get in a good practice without me in there. I can tough it out.

SR.com: How would you describe your progress this spring with a new position coach?

DH: I'm learning a lot. I'm settled in. Everything is very similar to last year, so it's just a matter of taking everything in and slowing everything down.

SR.com: The big thing for you has been building up your strength. Have you felt that improve under [strength and conditioning coach] Jeremy Cole?

DH: Yeah definitely. I've made gains even in the past six weeks with Coach Cole in the weight room. He's doing a good job of getting us all stronger and motivated. I'm about 280 right now, but of course I'd like to be heavier, hopefully 285, 290.

SR.com: How beneficial has Coach Cole been for you?

DH: He's changed a lot of things. I've learned a lot by his actions. He's keeping stuff to eat in the weight room. He's making lifts a lot better, faster. We're getting a lot of stuff done.

SR.com: What do you think of the way the rest of the offensive line is progressing this spring?

DH: We're doing good. Guys have been struggling as far as getting banged up, but we have people stepping in. We just keep on plugging along and getting better every day.

SR.com: Before they got hurt, we saw Matt McBride and Betim Bujari practice some at center. What have you showed them about playing the position?

DH: We all kind of teach each other. There are a lot of calls and you have to stay focused up there. Little things like hand placement can make all the difference.

SR.com: How much are you looking forward to when this offensive line is finally healthy?

DH: It's going to be fun. We're going to have battles at every position, which is what we need.

SR.com: What's your excitement level to actually play in a live situation in front of Rutgers fans?

DH: It's going to be a lot of fun. My family is going to be out here, so it will be nice to see them. It's going to be a fun day with all the fanfare and stuff.

SR.com: Have they ever come to see you at Rutgers before?

DH: Yeah. They came for the first game last year and to West Virginia, which was cold even for them. They had a good time.

SR.com: What will it mean to actually play in front of your family this time?

DH: It will be fun. They're excited. I'm excited. It's going to be a good day for everybody.

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