August 22, 2012

NOTEBOOK: VanGorder spawning new attitude

AUBURN -- Brian VanGorder's rants often may be aimed at linebackers, but the Tigers' defensive backs feel a new level of pressure to flourish or perish.

Auburn's new defensive coordinator, working alongside long-time collaborator Willie Martinez[/db], has elicited a more competitive environment at safety and cornerback. The lasting effect?

Everybody is concerned about their immediate future.

"It's a lot different. Last year you could kind of lay back and know you had a starting job," cornerback T'Sharvan Bell said. "Maybe you wouldn't work as hard at the little detailed things, but now if you come out there, and you're 4 x 5, and you're supposed to be 2 x 5, it could cost you your job. There's so much attention to detail."

Bell said Tuesday that he's been working chiefly at nickelback lately, but seemed to say that was more about building depth there rather than a change in jobs. Chris Davis has been discussed as the Tigers' top choice at nickel.

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