Oct. 27, 2011
Sophomore wide receiver Bobby Swigert sat down with us to discuss everything from football to his childhood dream to play in a league you wouldn’t expect.
Q: You had your best game of the season against Clemson [season-high 93 yards and his first touchdown of the season]. Can you take me through that game?
A: Clemson is one of the best teams in the nation. They were No. 8 when we played them, and going into Death Valley, I was definitely ready to play. I was very excited. They played a lot of man-coverage so there was a guy over me every single time and he had outside leverage so I ran a lot of inside breaking routes. [Quarterback] Chase [Rettig] found me a lot over the middle of the field even though he didn’t have a lot of time. I think he did a very good job of doing that that game.
Q: What do you think makes you and Chase such an effective combination?
A: I think it’s just our chemistry on and off the field. We’re really good friends off the field, and on the field, we’ve been constantly working together for two years on our timing, scramble techniques and everything like that. I think it’s the little things that separate a good combination so hopefully we can keep building on that and getting better.
Q: You played in every game last year as a true freshman and led the team in a number of offensive categories. How have those experiences helped you this season?
A: It helps a lot. Going from high school to college is an amazingly huge jump. You’re not really ready for it when you come out of high school. The level of play is so much faster and everybody’s so much better than what I thought. Playing last year was a shock at first, but I became more and more comfortable every game. Now in my second season, I know what to expect from other teams. I know the pace of the game, and I know how everything works. Experience definitely helps a lot in college football.
Q: What do you think the team needs to do moving forward to improve?
A: I think we just need to be more consistent and actually put four good quarters together for the first time all year. I don’t think we’ve done that at all. Even in our win, we did not play well at all times. I feel like if we can put four quarters together we’re a very good football team. We’ve been working very hard. We haven’t stopped working even though we’ve been losing a lot more than we’d like to. We have the same mindset that we can turn the season around and do a lot better the second half.
Q: Is there any particular player you model your game after?
A: My favorite player to watch is [Patriots’] Wes Welker. I’m from Ohio, and I’m not a Patriots fan like everybody else around here, but I absolutely love watching Wes Welker. I think he’s an amazing guy; he works insanely hard, he’s really talented. His mental aspect is the thing I respect the most about him. He plays incredibly hard, and even though he’s a lot smaller than a lot of the guys— kind of like me—he’s very successful and is possibly the best receiver in the NFL right now.
Q: Which of your opponent’s stadiums is your favorite place to play?
A: I would say Clemson was by far the craziest place I’ve ever played at. There was a point where we were coming back and were down less than two touchdowns. We had the ball and it was third down, and I couldn’t even hear the guy next to me. Chase was right in my ear screaming something, and I couldn’t hear him at all. Playing in an environment like that was amazing. Virginia Tech was right up there and Florida State last year was up there. The really hostile environments are where I thrive in and what I love to play in; so it’s awesome.
Q: What’s one thing that even your teammates don’t know about you?
A: Maybe some of them don’t know that I was a very good baseball player in high school and I actually thought until late in my junior year that I was going to play baseball in college and football wasn’t even an option. I love baseball. I was a baseball player growing up, and I had the mindset that I was going to possibly play baseball in the Majors. That was always my dream. But it turned out that I got a chance in football, and that was more appealing to me.
Q: What position did you play?
A: I played shortstop, but I was recruited as an outfielder.
Q: Why did you end up choosing football?
A: As high school progressed and I played more high school football, I just fell in love with the sport completely. I knew I couldn’t go through college without playing football because there’s a feeling that you get in football that you don’t get in baseball and I don’t think you get anywhere else in your life. I knew I would miss that feeling if I would play baseball and not football. Also, I got a full scholarship to play football so that didn’t hurt.
Q: What’s on your iPod? What do you listen to before a game?
A: I always listen to Eminem before the game. At the hotel the night before, I listen to Blink-182. When it’s game day, I listen to strictly Eminem to get me pumped up. He’s the one that gets me pumped up.
Interview by Jen Dobias