Sep 7, 2013; Athens, GA, USA; Georgia Bulldogs linebacker Amarlo Herrera (52) tackles South Carolina Gamecocks running back Mike Davis (28) to make a goal line stop on fourth down in the fourth quarter at Sanford Stadium. Georgia won 41-30. Mandatory Credit: Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports

UGA's Amarlo Herrera on defensive personnel changes: 'Not worried at all'

Exceptional leadership is what can carry a team that has been through a rough patch, and Georgia linebacker Amarlo Herrera exemplifies those qualities for the Bulldogs’ defense.

The much-publicized internal gutting of Georgia’s defense via dismissal or voluntary transfer would have most upperclassmen concerned that the team was going to begin to fray, but Herrara painted a much different picture during a Q&A with 11 Alive UGA insider Radi Nabulsi.

One excerpt from the interview:

11Alive: There have been a lot of changes in the guys that play behind you in the secondary. Concerned?

Herrera: “Nah, I’m not worried at all. They’ve got a great coach coaching them, teaching them technique, teaching them how to play, and you’re going to get hired or fired. Those guys are working and they know there’s pressure and everybody’s got to go out there and do their best every day.”

The rising senior linebacker has been one of Georgia’s most solid players on a defense that was, frankly, a bit gelatinous at times in the past few seasons. His play on the field and leadership in the locker room are why the coaches love him, and players rally around him.

Herrera was oddly left off of practically every preseason watch list to which his fellow linebackers Jordan Jenkins, Leonard Floyd and Ramik Wilson were named, and don’t think that he didn’t notice, all you voters.

“And me being left off, I really felt disrespected. I’m going to do what I’ve done every year, get better and better. I’m playing better every year. Specifically I’m working on better footwork, better technique, just [being] a better football player this year. I really feel I can cover. Playing blocks is probably where I can get better, I can run sideline to sideline, but sometimes on blocks I get stuck.”

Players like Herrera, who already are some of the best in the nation at their respective position, but recognize areas where they can improve and help not only their game but their team, are numbered far too few anymore. It’s great to hear about the positive players coming out of the UGA program.

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