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March 20, 2013

HD: 'We have a lot of guys that want to win'

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Auburn senior defensive end Dee Ford talks about how he and his fellow veterans are accepting their leadership roles in transitioning the team into a new season. Ford admits last year every player didn't buy into the process of being a success, but has seen a dramatic change this offseason.

ON BECOMING A LEADER: I take a natural approach. I believe I'm a natural born leader. I think my coaches are bringing it out and holding me accountable. Leaders are held to a higher standard, even more so than followers. We're definitely taking more of a leadership approach. We are handling things as far as discipline, we're handling things like that through players. We're handling that hands on. We have a lot of seniors and we're taking things to another level as far as the team.

ON HANDLING PROBLEMS WITHIN THE TEAM THAT WILL ARISE: It depends on what it is. We haven't had any problems yet. Problems come up, especially when the freshman come in, they don't know nothing, we probably have to scare them some. Would I threaten somebody? I'm a lover, not a fighter. I can do it with love. It depends on what we as seniors sit down and talk about, 'what we want to do with this, what do we want to do with this'. Like I said, we've had no problems. We have a lot of guys that want to win and the freshmen will come in and feed off that. It will be a little rotation going -- I wish I had more years. The next group of juniors that become seniors are going to do the same. They will take ownership, coaches sit back and coach.

WERE PLAYERS NOT TAKING OWNERSHIP LAST SEASON?: In a sense, players needed to take more of, but it's a new day. It's a new day.



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