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April 7, 2011

Drummond ready to breakout

After a tumultuous first two years at Georgia Tech, sophomore Daniel Drummond finally seems to have found a home on the defensive side of the ball. Drummond moved from B-back to inside linebacker where he is now running with the first team defense. After two years on the scout team, Drummond is primed to finally make his debut on the field at Georgia Tech.

"The last two years I have basically been on the scout team and now it is a completely different mentality," he said. "I have to come to practice every day prepared to give my best. Every single rep counts because we are all competing for those top spots. It is a lot more intense and there is a lot more preparation involved."

The move to the defensive side of the ball came from head coach Paul Johnson. B-back is probably the deepest position on the team and Coach Johnson felt like he needed to find a way to help Drummond get on the field and help the team at the same time.

Coach Johnson said he has been pleased with Drummond's progress through the first two weeks of spring practice.

"We felt like Daniel is a good kid who can run and he played on defense in high school, so I thought linebacker might be a natural spot for him," Johnson said. "So far this spring he has done well. He has had his days like most people in the spring, but overall we are pleased with him."

Drummond played some defensive end in high school, but he has never dedicated himself to the defensive side of the ball until this spring.

"I loved playing defense in high school, but I always had kind of a hard time playing both ways because I would get so tired. I was always worried about being the running back, but now that I am only playing defense I feel like I can be a good player since I can completely concentrate on defense."

The biggest challenge for Drummond moving from the offense side to defense was the complexity of Tech's defense compared to the simple approach used at Flowery Branch during his days there.

"This completely different than high school and I played a completely different position in high school, defensive end my senior year. It wasn't bad coaching or anything, but we kind of just played kill the man with the ball. Now we have gap responsibilities and we are trying to learn the system. It is not just run and get to the ball," Drummond said.

Drummond will continue to battle with Albert Rocker, Quayshawn Nealy and B.J. Machen for the starting job opposite Julian Burnett this spring.


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