football Edit

Stringer, Giles, talk spring ball improvements and standouts

The media got the chance to speak with linebacker Brayden Stringer and wide receiver Jonathan Giles after practice today. Below they share their thoughts on their respective springs, who has stood out, and what they've seen from their sides of the ball...

Brayden Stringer:

…Over the course of the spring, what areas did the linebacker group make the most progress?

“I think we really matured a lot this whole spring. We were a pretty young group all around and you could definitely see the maturity as we went on this spring. We were more confident with each other on the field and the bond throughout this spring has gotten stronger.”

…Who were the biggest standouts to you from this spring?

“(Vaughnte) Dorsey for sure. Him coming in, he stood out to everybody honestly. He is just a really explosive player, knows how to play the game, and just leaves it out on the field on every play. On kickoff, on special teams, on any of our defenses, he is just running around, and he just likes to hit stuff. Dorsey for sure stood out to me.”

...Tech brought in a lot of junior college transfers this spring and they’ve been asked to make an immediate impact, how have they done so far?

“I think Oct (Morgan) and Dorsey and Tony (Jones), I think they have all helped the defense in a big way. They are all mature guys and they needed to step in and play a lot in this defense. They have came in and made an impact and have all stepped up for sure. They’ve helped us out a lot for sure, so I think it will be a great thing come the end of the season.”

...Do you feel like you accomplished what you wanted to accomplish this spring?

“Not everything quite yet. I still have to grow in certain spots. There is always places to get better. I feel like I have matured a lot and have gotten a lot better at certain things that I wanted to get better at but there is still a lot more.”

...One big problem over the past few seasons is the lack of depth on defense, do you feel like that will be another problem this season?

“I think once we are fully healthy, we have a few people out to injuries, we are a little light right now. We have like five guys right now. When we get everybody back, we are going to have like 10, so we will be very deep and very scary. We are going to be deep and defensive back and defensive line, too. We have a lot of guys coming off of redshirts that will play a lot this year. We are pretty deep at every spot throughout the field.”

Jonathan Giles:

…Nic has stepped in as the presumptive starter, what has been the biggest change with him this spring?

“His work ethic, I feel like that has been a pretty big change. He was already a hard worker, and we have seen that each and every off season. This spring, though, I feel like he was always pushing the receivers and even pushing the defense, too. I feel like his work ethic has really stepped up now that he has taken over as the starter.”

...What was the biggest learning curve for both units throughout this spring?

“Probably turnovers. Coach Kingsbury preached to us throughout the whole spring, we had too many turnovers which is why we couldn’t go and finish out the season the right way. The defense, I feel like it was getting off the field on third down. They had a lot of missed tackles and busted coverages that they needed to make to get off the field. They just couldn’t make the plays, so they worked on that.”

...Do you feel like you accomplished everything you wanted to accomplish this spring?

“Yes I do. I wanted to get faster, and I feel like have gotten a lot faster. I also wanted to get bigger, and I definitely put on a few pounds. I improved in every area.”

...Has the offense skipped a beat with Nic at the helm?

“I don’t think so. I think Nic came in, and he knew what he needed to do right away. He is doing a great job at it right now, and I hope he can keep it up come fall camp and going into the season.”

...Who made the biggest strides this spring?

“Probably Keke. I already knew it was coming. He’s made all types of crazy plays this spring. That’s my guy, and he is going to be real good.”

...David Gibbs has said that the defensive guys have forced significantly more turnovers this spring, what have you seen from them?

“They have made a lot of plays. It’s crazy. They are doing what they are supposed to do against us. I don’t think coach Gibbs has yelled as much as he did last year. I imagine that they’ve all done their job. Gibbs taught them how to force turnovers and they’ve done just that. They’ve won all the competition drills so far.”

...What defensive back has given you the most problems?

“You might be surprised, but it is Justus Parker. This is my first time going against him in the spring, so I haven’t gotten used to going against him one-on-one. I feel like he has caused me the most problems.”