At the start of last season, little was said about Brandon Boykin.
To most, he was just the guy who was going to try to replace the NFL-bound Asher Allen at the corner spot. More attention was being given to incoming dynamo Branden Smith, and for good reason.
As 2010 comes into focus, however, Boykin may be one of the steadiest commodities in our young secondary. Why?
Well, for one, as dynamic as Branden Smith was last season—returning kicks and fielding reverses—he was green in his coverage skills. At times, his inexperience playing defensive back showed and led some to wonder if he might not be better suited at wide receiver than corner.
Boykin, by contrast, did a nice job.
Sure, he had his share of growing pains in a pass defense that saw numerous holes and multiple issues in keeping quarterback play in check, but he was largely successful playing his position and didn’t make as many mistakes as some thought he might.
This season, under the direction of new defensive backs coach Scott Lakatos, Boykin is poised to take the next step in his development. He is already making noise and earning praise with his performance in Spring practice.
His play and attention to detail has done wonders for his confidence and that will, hopefully, translate into even better play on the field this coming season.
Dawg fans can expect to see Boykin lined up not only at corner in the 3-4 base set, but also in the nickel package as well . He has already proven that he is more than qualified to handle the double duty and continues to assert himself as a surefire starter come the opening game of the season.
Does all of this newfound responsibility mean he will see the ball less in the kick return game? Not likely.
Most Georgia Bulldog fans will hardly forget the prowess that Boykin displayed last season as a return man for the Dawgs.
His 988 yards on 38 returns, with three touchdowns, made him a nice weapon for Georgia last season. Look for him to continue seeing his chances in 2010—if a team dares to kick it his way.
Boykin is a hard worker who aspires to be the best he can be on the field.
He’s every bit as physical as any player, despite his size, and he loves to compete against the best the SEC has to offer.
His leadership ability is slowly beginning show and he is ready to get on the field and prove that he can be the playmaker the Dawgs need to keep opposing quarterbacks honest.
2009 stats: 54 tackles, three interceptions, five tackles for loss