DE Bedford working to keep starting job
For the past two seasons, David Bedford has been the challenger trying to unseat USF's starting defensive ends, but with his senior year about to begin, Bedford is now the starter doing his best to hold off a group of young players trying to take his spot.
"There's definitely some challengers, a lot of young guys," Bedford said after Friday's practice. "I feel like I've waited around, sat behind the (George) Selvies and the (Jason) Pierre-Pauls and Jarriett Buies. I think it's my time. I'm ready to hold down this spot."
Bedford came to USF with high expectations after he racked up 13.5 sacks in his only season playing at Independence Community College in Kansas. With talented players ahead of him at end, Bedford has had limited opportunities to show his talents, totaling 14 tackles and 1.5 sacks in his two seasons with the Bulls. But with Selvie and Pierre-Paul now in the NFL, Bedford has a chance, though he's getting pushed by redshirt freshmen Ryne Giddins and Julius Forte and junior Claude Davis.
Much like Selvie, Bedford is trying to put on a little size -- he was up as high as 250 in Vero Beach, but said the physical drain of daily practices in hot temperatures have him back down to 245. Asked which of the newcomers on defense has impressed him so far, Bedford didn't hesitate in naming true freshman safety Mark Joyce, who is making a case to play right away this season.
"He's going to be able to help us out a lot," he said. "(He's a) ballhawk, and he'll come down and hit you, which is what you want from your safeties. I love that. He's shown the ability to pick up the playbook as a true freshman."