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Inside the head; Gilman explains the best and worst of receiver

November 5, 2010

When people think about wide receivers, many think of players like T.O. or Ocho Cinco and the crazy celebrations and all their self absorbed talk. However, not all wide receivers are like this and there are some class acts out there that are unselfish and have a team-first attitude. One of the best receivers of all time fits this description and junior wide receiver Scott Gilman models his play after him.

“I really look at Donald Driver and the way he plays,” said Gilman. “He loves the game, and always goes hard every play and never takes a play off. He always does his job. He is all about the team and is a class act and I try to emulate him.”

There are more important attributes you need to play wide receiver than speed; contrary to what the Madden football games tell you. “Being a good route runner is so important because if you can’t run crisp routes then you won’t be in the right spot at the right time. If you run a lazy route or you don’t get to the right depth it throws off the whole play.”

There are many routes you can run in football but one in particular always makes Gilman excited to run.

“I love running the dig route, coming across the middle, sneaking in right behind the linebackers but in front of safeties,” Gilman said. “A lot of receivers can’t run across the middle or are scared to but I’m a bigger receiver who can take a hit. Catching it in stride and turning it up the sidelines is the best.”

In football the defense either is in zone or man coverage and the way you attack them are very different.

“I want them in man because it is a one on one and you can use your skills against his to beat him and if you beat him, you win,” said Gilman. “But in zone we have to read what coverage the safeties are in, and if corners will bail, so film comes into play and there are more split second decisions to make.”

Wide receivers are always looking for the big catch and Gilman explained how it feels. “It depends on how it happened. If it is one handed or a dive you get a big reaction from the crowd and teammates; it feels great. But even if it is just when the quarterback throws it prefect and hits you in stride it feels great and you get a lot of praise, but you know the whole team did their job, not just you. So you need to make the catch and do your job because everyone else did.”

When he doesn’t make the catch, Gilman feels awful. “I feel embarrassed because your one main job is catching the ball and then trying to make a play. When you drop the ball you let the whole team down.”

While taking big hits and lots of running are often thought to be the hardest thing about being a wideout, Gilman thinks it is more than just that. “The hardest part of playing receiver is going hard every play, because a lot of plays are going the other way or you know you probably won’t get involved, but still have to go 100 percent and that can really tire you out.”

But with hard work comes rewards and to Gilman that is what makes it worth the work. “The best part of being a receiver is knowing you will make some big plays in a passing offense, and you get a lot of recognition for it. There is nothing like making a big catch in a big game.

BY JACK DONNELLY
Co-Sports Editor

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