Gator Country checked in with Brandon Antwine after his first day of freshman practice. The team worked out in a helmet and shorts, so obviously we can’t get into the trenches… yet.
Mark McLeod: How was your first day?
“Oh, it’s pretty rough getting into the groove of things. But, as things progress it should get better. Who knows, maybe I’ll be starter.”
Mark McLeod: How different is this from what you experienced in high school?
“High school from this is a real major change actually. There is a whole bunch of intensity. It’s just everyone working together as a team. You know in high school, people kind of slack off, but in college everything is full throttle.”
Mark McLeod: What are your initial thoughts on Coach Mattison?
“Coach Mattison is the best coach I’ve ever seen in my life.”
Mark McLeod: After one day?
“After one day.”
Mark McLeod: What is it that sets him apart?
“He’s a players’ coach. He’s giving it his all and at the same time he’ll jump up you if you’re not doing the right thing. If you are doing the right thing, he’ll let you know that you are. Everything is good. He’s an excellent coach.”
Mark McLeod: In the time that you’ve been here have any of the older guys taken you under their wing and helped you out?
“Oh yes sir, the whole defensive line, mainly Marcus Thomas, the person I’m behind. I’m around him all the time and he’s always talking to me about how things are going. Not really out here in the summer, but in film study, he lets me know what’s going on.
Mark McLeod: How often have you guys gotten together to watch film?
“Not too often up here. But, we have gone to his house and watched film together. We’ve done this five times.”
Mark McLeod: The heat shouldn’t be too oppressive to you coming from Texas?
“It’s not too oppressive, but at the same time Texas and Florida are two totally different places. It’s so hot and humid out here, it’s unbelievable. I’ve got to get used to it. I had surgery on May 25th that I’m just recovering from. It’s going to be a little time, but I should adapt to it and do as well as I can.”
Mark McLeod: Talk a little bit about that surgery?
“I had surgery on my nose. My polyps were enlarged and they went in and I had surgery to clear that up. I was out for a good month and a half, not doing anything. When I came here, we went straight in to it, so I was kind of behind. I’m still kind of behind and I’m just working my way to get into shape.”
Mark McLeod: So it makes breathing in this humidity difficult?
“ Oh, very difficult. On top of that I have asthma, so that doesn’t make it any better. I’ve had to use my inhaler quite a bit to get used to it. But, I’ll get used to it. It’ll get better.”