USFNation Q&A: Bulls DL Brandon Peguese

USF defensive lineman Brandon Peguese received the Bulls Overachiever Award in '06 as it was voted on by his teammates. Read this exclusive interview and find out what his first spring practice with USF was like, what type of a player he is, what his goals are this year and much more. Only on -- Get it First, Get it Fast!

Brandon Peguese


What was it like going through your first Spring Practice as a Bull?

"It was okay, it felt good to be on the field. I'm just working hard and trying to compete for a position."


What were some of the harder things for you to get used to out there?

"The hardest thing was probably just trying to learn the plays right away. It's a big package and there's a lot to learn."


What were some of the things that were the easiest for you to get used to?

"Probably just going out there and playing. Just being able to go out and do all the things like middle drill, pass rush, just being able to show the coaches and everybody that I'm worth being here."


What do you think is the biggest improvement that you've made since you got to USF?

"I'd say learning the schemes and getting bigger and stronger."


What physical gains have you made since you got to campus?

"Well when I got here I was 6'1 and weighed 218-219 pounds. Now I'm 235 pounds, 238 today actually. Besides gaining 18 pounds in weight, I also went up in bench press, vertical, power clean squat, everything went up. When I cam in I was bench pressing 230, now I'm up to 365 lbs. My vertical went up 3 inches to 31 ½. In squat when I came in I was doing 480, and now it's about 530. When I came in I was putting up 225 lbs around 13 times, and now I'm up to 19.


What do you attribute you progress to?

"Well Coach McKeefery works you very hard. He's a very goods strength coach, he gets the job done and knows what he's doing. I credit all my weight gain to him. That and coming in and doing extra. He's always encouraging you to come in and do extra work, and it helps. Any afternoon you come by and I'm in here."



How did it feel to receive the Golden Bull Award by your peers?

"Well everybody was calling it out from the get go, so it wasn't a big surprise, but it still made me feel good. Just to know that you're getting noticed, and not just out there doing it. I'd still do it just to get the extra work in, but its nice to get noticed once in awhile."



Since you came in as a DE, what was it like switching to D-tackle?

"It was good, they were moving me around a bit, and the inside technique helps out because with me being fast and strong, It's something that the guards haven't seen before and it gives me an advantage to bet them off of the ball with my quickness. I like it, it gives me a chance to make more plays in the backfield, and help out the team. Also going against some of the bigger guys teaches you to be more physical."


Since were talking about speed, how fast are you?

"Coach Leavitt timed me at 4.64."


After working at tackle, do you prefer it over end?

"No not really, I'd like to move back to end, but I'm doing it to help out the team, and I want to play, so what ever gets me on the field."


How do you feel you did this spring?

"I feel I did pretty good and the .coaches liked what they seen out of me."



What was it like when you were working against the first team O-line?

"Working against the ones was fun, it was good going against the tougher guys, and I'm always ready for a challenge."



Were you happy with the amount of reps you got this spring?

"Yea I got a lot of reps this spring, and I'm very happy with the amount of work I got. I think the coaches were very pleased with my spring, and think they can use me next year. Hopefully they can win some games with me."


How was it getting acclimated to Coach McCarney?

"Well coach Clark was a good coach too, but Coach McCarney coaching scheme is totally different, the too schemes are totally different from one another. Coach McCarney is a very good coach. He's coached D-1 for a very long time so he knows what he's doing, and we have a lot we can learn from him."


 Was there a reason why towards the end of spring you had a different attitude and were smiling a bit more?"

"In the beginning of spring I was getting a bit frustrated because I wasn't getting done what I needed to at end. But when I moved inside it relieved some of the pressure because the coaches loved what I was doing. So of course it made things more fun and It made me want to be out there more."


Going against the different offensive linemen, did any guys stand out to you?

"Of the guys that I was going against, I'd say definitely Matt Huners. Ryan Schmidt, and Zach Hermann, but all the guys have their little things about them. Matt Huners was very strong. Hermann was more of a technician. And Schmidt was just. I also went against Jeremiah Warren a few times. He's very big and strong. But I was able to do what I want with him because he doesn't really know all he's doing right now at guard. He knows what he's doing but hasn't had a lot of time at the guard position. But I'll tell you one thing. If he catches you slipping he'll take you for a ride. He's a very big kid."


Going against all the different running backs, do you approach them differently?

"Yeah, Aston is shifty and fast. Ford, not as shifty but he's big and strong, and Ben, well Ben is just strong. With Ben you have to get him low, if you don't get him low he'll run you over. With Aston you have to come in under control, if you don't come in under control then he'll shake you out of your shoes. Well ford is bigger then the other running backs, so you have to come in correct. I learned that you have to come in correct and if you are going to hit him when he's running with it, you better hit him good."


Do any of them stand out more to you?

"Because I've missed more tackles on Aston, I'd say he stands out to me. Ford stands out a lot to me too. I'm very proud of Ford and have encouraged him to keep going and to continue to get bigger. There's a big difference in him from when he first got here. He seems to have gotten a lot more comfortable out there. He's not thinking as much and just going out there and being him."


How was it playing in your first spring game at USF?

"I loved it, playing in Raymond James Stadium. It was fun. That was my first time being on that field, and playing where the Buc's play was great. Now I got a taste in my mouth I can't wait to get back out there."


Do you feel good about what you accomplished this spring?

"Yeah, there's always room for improvement, but. I'm happy with the stride I made over the spring. Some of the upper class men have been helping me out. Of course Coach Mac has been helping me out, having me jump rope to quicken up my steps, and we'll get it done."


What do you want o accomplish between now and the summer session?

"I want to gain weight. I'd like to get up to around 255 lbs. Since I got here I definitely put on a lot more muscle since I got here. I cut down on my body fat and put on more muscle. I also want to work on getting off of the ball. Work on my pass rush. I'm not a big guy so speed is going to help me out a lot." 


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