With two days of Spring Football in the books, SUU defensive coordinator and defensive backs coach Rod Chance answered questions pertaining to the SUU defensive in the midst of a reloading year.
Q: How have the first couple days been? What have you seen from the guys?
A: Obviously we’re replacing a lot of bodies from the good season we had last year, so defensively we’re a little bit younger than we have been in the past. So right now we’re just trying to take the small steps, get back to the fundamentals, make sure people can get lined up right, know what their assignment is and make the right communication. If we can do that in the first couple days then we’ve been successful.
Q: You mentioned having to replace some bodies. How much have you missed having last year’s senior class around so far.
A: Always having veteran players helps you out when you get in certain situations, and it also helps your youth out when you have a leader to look up to. Not having that is a little bit of a challenge, but at the same time it’s exciting because you get to start from scratch and see who the new players will be and how those guys emerge.
Q: Last year Jalen Russell was a Freshman All-American. How much did you see him improve in the weight room the last few months?
A: Jalen came in here with a good foundation in terms of strength, so we expected him to get even stronger after going through a winter program with us. He had a really good freshman year, probably could have made a couple more plays if you ask him, but going into this season we’re trying to clean him up a bit to be a little more consistent because we’ll have to put a little more weight on his shoulders this season.
Q: Just a few days into the spring what have you seen from the defensive backs?
A: It’s fun. Right now we’re still waiting on some guys and we’ve got some new bodies. We’ve got Taelin Webb that’s trying to step up and assert himself. We’ve got James Randolph who just got here from El Camino College. It’s fun to see these guys come out here and compete. Right now a lot of them aren’t used to my coaching style or my vernacular, so a lot of it is trying to get them up to speed and get them into shape.
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SUU Athletics Strategic Communications