On not being a freshman anymore - on what is expected of him this season.
"Um, it's kind of hard. I know they expect a lot of me this year and I want to do good. Right now I am just going out there and competing because there is nothing saying I am the starter. Cory and Daccus are good too. With the defense and offense going at it like we are right now, I just have to keep competing and not take anything for granted. It's a lot of fun right now."
On having a fullback like Brandon Schweitzer and others like him in front of him to block this year.
"I like that. It's pretty good. They get up in there and open holes for us and give us good space to run in. I like it a lot better because now I know if I follow them there will be one less tackler I have to think about when I hit the hole. Brandon is doing a good job and I think this is going to be good for us having him up there leading the way for us."
On what he learned last year as a true freshman in the league.
"The big thing is to just not worry about taking a hit because those are going to come whether you want them to. The big thing is to just hit the hole hard and step up and be tough. If you think about it too much you are wrong. You know the hits are coming every play so the thing to do is just forget about that and hit the hole hard."
On gaining weight and getting stronger and faster.
"Yeah, I have gained some weight, a few pounds I guess. I have been working in the weight room and gotten a lot stronger. They make you do that here. I got faster too. I should be better this year. I hope to do more before the season starts."
On the leg unjury suffered in the Tennessee game last year that seemed to linger.
"It's fine now. I don't feel it anymore and it made me realize I needed to be in my best shape to compete and not get injured in those kind of games. I'm fine. I am more than 100%."
On the changes on the offense.
"These coaches are very competitive. They make changes they think are going to be better for us but they stay on you too much to worry you about any real changes that might be going on. You know what I mean? You are too busy just trying to do all the little things they teach you in little steps to really see any big changes. Running the football is simple. Someone hands you the ball and you run for an opening, that's about all there is to it. You have to know where to go and when to block but other than that you just take the handoff and try to pick up yards. So changes don't affect me that much if I want to be a good player. All that affects me is how to hit the hole faster and pick up more yards and not be easy to tackle and bring down."
On the new 'I Set' specifically.
"I'm more comfortable with the I, that's what I ran in high school so I am better familiar with it. I guess that is the big change you were asking about? Yeah. I like it more because of the lead blocker and all that. It gives me more chances to make something happen and I like that. It gives the defenses something else they have to worry about. Before, they could key on the one back and whatever he did that's all a spy would have to worry about. Now they have two backs to worry about and that makes it twice as hard for them to key on whoever is the deep back. They are going to have to worry about the quarterback this year too."
On the new helmet.
"Well, they gave me a new helmet because of the consussion last year. I didn't feel comfortable with it so I am back to wearing my old helmet. I wore it the first two days and that was it, I didn't like the way it fit me."
On Coach Holtz.
"He is a competitor. Everything he does is going to make you a better person on and off the field."
On his (Lou's) new outlook and loosening up with the team this year.
"I think he's just letting us be ourselves. I mean some people complained about that so he is sort of letting us loosen up and do a little bit more of what we want to. I still think it is going to be about the same though. None of that really matters because this is football. As long was we forget about the little stuff and just go out there and play hard that's all that really matters. Everything will take care of itself if we play hard and win. None of the rest of it will matter."
On going into the new year with a new mindset.
"I am real happy here and I made the right decision. We know what we have to do and that is work harder and play harder all the time. All my teammates are thinking just like that because none of us like to lose. This year is going to be better because we all like each other and you know, things are more relaxed in a way. You never know what is going to happen but I think we will do better. If we don't it will not be because we didn't work hard and give it our best."
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