Safety Nick Williams can barely contain his excitement when talking about first-year Georgia defensive coordinator Todd Grantham.
Those who know the Bainbridge native will tell you this certainly comes as no big shocker.
The gregarious Williams is a walking, talking bundle of energy with an ever-present smile that belies his stated passion of knocking opposing receivers into early retirement from the game.
But when the subject turns to Grantham, Williams almost buzzes right out of his shoes.
"Being in the League, the man is just a winner. He just wants to beat you. Everything he does, he wants to beat you and he wants to beat you bad," Williams said during Saturday's Countdown to Kickoff.
How bad is bad?
"Oh, 50, 60, he wants to beat you," Williams continued. "We love it. He's made us believe it is fun. Football is fun. We enjoy it."
When asked to describe what Georgia's approach will be this fall, Williams left no question about what the Bulldogs' defensive philosophy will be.
"We're blitzing. It's not anything nobody else is doing, but it's the way we're going to do it," Williams said. "Everybody's bought into Coach Grantham. He's our leader, and we're going to follow our leader."
Apparently, Bulldog fans have much to look forward to.
Despite both teams combining for seven sacks in April's G-Day Game, Williams said the defense only showed a tiny percent of what's eventually going to be in sore.
"We just ran a little basic stuff, basic packages. Yeah, we're going to open it up," Williams said. "Man, that was like 10 percent, if that, of what we're going to do."
New secondary coach Scott Lakatos has also made quite the impression.
Although Williams said Lakatos' personality isn't that same fireball of intensity displayed by Grantham, the former UConn assistant has quickly earned the players' respect.
"I love Coach Lakatos. I don't like to bring up the past, but he knows how to deal with guys. Sometime he'll call me and it's not even football related. He'll just want to know what's up," Williams said. "He doesn't take things off the field or make things personal. He's someone I can talk to. I can tell him everything. He's a guy who keeps everything at an adult level, he coaches hard and he believes in you. Coach Grantham is more outspoken that Coach Lakatos, but you do something to make him mad, he's going to get on you, too."
Williams has liked what he's seen from Georgia's summer workouts as well.
With preseason practice set to begin Aug. 2, Williams claims this summer's preparation has been the best he's seen in his three years here.
"The older guys have been doing a great job getting pass skel together, everything," Williams said. "I've been here three years and we've never worked this hard. If it's not film, we're working drills, we're doing something every day and I'm enjoying it."
Williams admits that wasn't the case last year.
"Our record pretty much proved that," Williams said. "We went 8-5. That's not us. That's not Georgia."
He pointed to Justin Houston, Darryl Gamble, Akeem Dent, DeAngelo Tyson and Brandon Boykin as five players on defense among those who are doing their respective parts.
"This is a players' team. We can take criticism from each other; we can each other if we think somebody is slipping," Williams said. "We like that, that's what we need."
...More... To continue reading this article you must be a member. Sign Up Now!