Daily Football Fix: Henderson looks to build on UF debut

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Florida cornerback CJ Henderson scampers into the end zone after intercepting a Tennessee pass during second-half action at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium on September 16, 2107. [Alan Youngblood/Gainesville Sun]

By all accounts, cornerback CJ Henderson had an excellent true freshman season in 2017, one that was highlighted by back-to-back interceptions for touchdowns in the first two games of the year.

But he’s not all that impressed with what he’s accomplished so soon in his Gator career.

“I guess I had a great freshman year, but I’m not satisfied at all with it,” Henderson said. “I’m going to continue working hard, just continue working on my technique and stuff. I know I can get a lot better.”

His back-to-back pick-sixes against Michigan and Tennessee were big, almost unheard of for a true freshman. But, again, he apparently was not overly impressed.

“Mentally, I was just ready for the next game,” he said. “I tried not to think about it at all.”

Henderson is now ready to move on to his sophomore season. He’ll be one of the more experienced players in a young secondary and he’s going to be taking on more of a leadership role.

“I think me and Marco (Wilson) and Chauncey (Gardner-Johnson) have stepped up a lot (as leaders),” Henderson said. “Duke Dawson just left, so we’ve got to step up and lead the younger guys.”

It will still be a young secondary, but Henderson said the Gators have the talent to continue the DBU tradition at Florida.

“These guys we have now I think will be really good,” he said. “We have a lot of athletic guys and they are ready to work.”

 

7 COMMENTS

  1. I think he’ll probably even more of an influence on the action about him this year. He’s got a year of SEC football under his belt, has the requisite skill sets and more now with good coaching, and he’s both humble and motivated. A future All American, IMO, if he can break out this season and avoid injuries (where the new S&C program should show effect). Go Gators………..

  2. I expect him and all the veterans to play at an ever higher level. These guys are elite athletes and football players, and they now have the quality coaching to rise up to become their best selves. It’s going to be beautiful.

    • Nicely put, Richard…..and worth remembering too. These are indeed elite athletes. I remember taking the average of the 2018 class when it was all said and done, which came up to, I think, a mean of 3.83. By any other names, a 4* class. That only adds to the talent already on hand, some of it yet untapped. You’re right, bud….it’s going to be beautiful no matter what the naysayers say.

  3. the state of florida annually generates huge numbers of fast athletes that should continue the dbu tradition, high school is just a process of sorting out the next man up. also the other 6 to 7 spots on the team that go to speed guys readily produce nfl talent. Lineman not as much; you can generally predict how good a gator team will be based on the offensive line (except in the Muschamp era, where he believed defense should win the game and had no desire to push the offense).

  4. I liked what I saw as a pass defender, however, as a run stopper not so much. Can’t shy away from tackling. Go Gators!

  5. WELL I WATCH HIS TAPES IN H.S. HE WAS A BETTER RB THAN CB HIS SPEED IS AWESOME! I BELIEVE THAT HE WILL ANSWER THE PUNT RETURN ROLE OF THIS STAFF WOULD LOOK AT HIS FILM! HE PLAYED IN DADE COUNTY THE BEST OF BEST IN FLA COUNTIES FOOTBALL TALENT! TRYING AT KICKOFF WOULD BE A NO BRAINER BUT COACH MULLEN HASN’T LOOKED AT HIS TAPES AT ALL THIS KIDS SPEED IS OUTSTANDING CAN’T COACH THAT! PERCY HARVIN TYPE TALENT JUST LOOK AT THE TAPES!!! GO GATORS! GOOD LUCK SOFLA PULLING FOR YOU CJ GOD BLESS YOU!🙏

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