Nov. 15, 2013
By Layne Herdt (@LayneHerdt) Seminoles.com-
Unfortunately safety Terrance Brooks missed the Wake Forest game due to a concussion, fortunately the Garnet and Gold had freshman Nate Andrews waiting in the wings to fill his shoes.
Half of the Seminoles NCAA leading 18 interceptions are by underclassmen in the secondary, a unit that has dominated no matter who has stepped on the field.
"It all comes from the head leader, coach [Jimbo] Fisher," senior defensive back Lamarcus Joyner said. "He has done a tremendous job in the past recruiting. In the past three or four years we've had top five, top 10 recruiting classes and he set a standard around here. That's the kind of guys we recruit."
"That's what I harp on," senior safety Terrence Brooks said. "I say guys you don't know who's going to go down and your'e going to be in the game so it's no use of complaining about playing time because when you're name's called we need you to be ready."
Part of the reason stems from the Seminoles mantra that the best player will play regardless of age, something the underclassmen have bought into from the beginning.
"That's the mentality that these guys have," Joyner said. "You see it in spring with the early enrollees, you see it in fall camp where guys are just competing. That gets the older guys better because you know that the best players are going to play so you have to do your job and help the younger guys get on your level."
What has also helped is the way the upperclassmen have been taking the young guys under their wings.
"Two things, the way they work and their ability to process information and the way the upperclassmen deal with them," head coach Jimbo Fisher said. "They've done it the whole year, they've done a tremendous job of incorporating those guys in into the system and really teaching them."
"To tell you the truth, they've really been listening," Brooks said. "They listen and watch the players who are out there already. They really take coaching well and they really buy into the tips we give them about the things we've been through already and the mistakes we've made. We just tell them that and they make sure they remember that and try to not make those mistakes."
Regardless of the reasons, the Seminole secondary continues to suffocate opposing defenses leaving fans to wonder, who's next on the list to make a game changing play.