Q&A with Safety Lorenzo Waters

PISCATAWAY, N.J. -- Injuries are a part of football, and senior captain Lorenzo Waters is used to working in new faces on the Rutgers defense. Rutgers has the majority of its defensive secondary on the injury report heading into kickoff against Michigan and quarterback Devin Gardner. Waters talked about the new names at defensive back and preparing for a blackout.

ScarletReport.com -- Are people making too much of the changes in the secondary with all of these injuries?

Senior safety Lorenzo Waters -- “I would say so. I’m not really too worried about it. I’ve played with all of these guys. I’ve lined up with each and every one of those guys in the summer and in training camp. There is so much inside that people don’t see. They just see the starters out there on game day. They’re not accustomed to seeing a different pair of safeties out there, but I’m equally comfortable with all of them.”

SR.com -- Is this where the summer 7-on-7 work really comes in handy?

LW -- “Definitely. You learn how these guys move and you learn their strengths and weaknesses. I know how to play with them because of that stuff.”

SR.com -- Is it cool for you to watch a guy like Andre Hunt emerge?

LW -- “I’m definitely proud of him. I’ve seen where he’s come from just from being a receiver and a running back. He helped fill the void we had at safety last year, and now he’s going to get a lot of reps. I’m just really proud of how diligent he’s been in his preparation. He’s taking advantage of the opportunities he gets.”

SR.com -- Can you guys learn anything from Johnathan Aiken’s targeting penalty?

LW -- “We kind of all knew what to look for. The issue is that you kind of get a better understanding of really what the refs are looking to see. Whether you consider the hit serious or not, you kind of understand the magnitude of how you want to protect the quarterback. You have to remember that and keep that in the back of your mind during the game.”

SR.com -- What do you think about Michigan after watching a week’s worth of film?

LW -- “They have a great team. Nobody here is really getting caught up on what’s going on over there off the field. They’re a great team. They’ve always had great teams. I know it’s going to be a tough matchup when we go out there and play them.”

SR.com -- You guys, traditionally, are very good against mobile quarterbacks. Why do you think that is?

LW -- “Because we’re mobile too. We’re a fast defense. Whether they’re mobile or not, we’re going to keep up.”

SR.com -- Will you go watch film against some other dual-threat quarterbacks, or does that not help because it’s a different scheme?

LW -- “Not necessarily. Each team has its own separate deal. All you can do is watch as much film as you can to be ready. They’re all their own separate athletes. I want to watch as much as I can of the team we’re going to play against.”

SR.com -- Is this a week where that swarm mentality really comes into play?

LW -- “Yes, just like every other game. Our goal is to fly around on every play. We’re going to have nine, 10, 11 guys on every tackle. That would be ideal for us.”

SR.com -- You did a lot more work against the first-team offense in practice this week. Is that a big help for you?

LW -- “Those guys have a definite connection working as the first unit. We get great looks from our scouts, but it’s hard to simulate the actual game-speed that you’re going to face.”

SR.com -- Do you get into the blackout idea at all?

LW -- “It’s nice. You don’t want to get too distracted by it. You still have to go out there and play against a great team. It’s OK to look good though.”


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