How do you feel you did at the spring game?
"I did alright, I should have done better. I feel like I made a lot of mental errors based on coverage's and I feel I should have done better."
You had seven tackles, two pass deflections and two sacks. What do you think about your performance here tonight?
"It was nice, Coach Burnham told me ‘I needed to have a good game.' I did, he was walking me through my game, there was still some stuff I'm unsure about but, I am getting it down. I'm trying to learn defensive end and linebacker and it's all coming together now so by the summer I should have it all down and be ready to go by the fall."
How did your playing time last year get you ready for this upcoming year?
"That's what I needed because the whole year I was thinking I'm not gonna' play because Stephen Nicholas is too good. I went to talk to Coach Burnham and he said ‘we'll get you on the field some how.' That actually gave me the courage to be able to play with other guys and I needed that. I was so timid. I was thinking everybody is so big, but Coach Burnham took me to the side and said ‘It's not about being big, it's about being fast and that's what you are.' So I needed that."
What are your thoughts about the linebacker's role in the defense?
"The linebackers lead it all, so we have to step up; we have to be able to get the d-line lined up and the secondary lined up with us, so everyone is on the same page. I believe we have to step up a lot to match the performances of the veteran defensive backs and the veterans on the d-line. We're kind of young, playing time-wise and experience so we have to step it up out there."
You've seen time at both linebacker and defensive end; is there a position you see yourself being at right now going into the fall?
"Both, the coaches still want me to be a pass rushing specialist, that's what they call me. I want to be able to achieve that and play linebacker."
Do you have a preference for strong side or weak side?
"I don't really have a preference. The coaches are teaching me weak side right now, they said that's where I need to be good but I need to be able to play both no matter what, so I'm learning the strong side, weak side and D-end."
Do you feel any pressure about the competition at the linebacker postion?
"There's no pressure, I talked to Stephen Nicholas about it and he said ‘just play hard, as long as you play hard every snap, there's not too many people that are gonna' stop me.'"
Are the coaches or players helping you the most out there?
"It's a little bit of both. They all want us to do well and be on the same page as everybody else. The coaches and the players are encouraging me to do my best because I'm so young; I'm like the new guy in the group."
What came the easiest out there for you this spring?
"Pass rushing because the new coach, Coach Mac has stayed after practices and helped me learn the short steps and long steps and when to use both. He and Coach Burnham were my best influences this spring."
What was the hardest thing for you to get used to this spring?
"The tight ends, I still have to get used to getting my hands on the tight ends and be able to hold fort, and hold them right there so there is no gaps or seams to open up."
Did you achieve the goals that you wanted to accomplish this spring?
"Yes, by being able to get in shape enough to play D-line and linebacker. That was the tough part and I feel like I did achieve that because I was doing extra running and everything else. So I believe that's what I achieved most."
In the five months between now and fall, what do you want to work on most?
"I wanna' be able to get up to 245 lbs, in that range. I want to be able to play at that weight and keep my speed."
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