Desmond Trufant has a lot of confidence in both himself and his abilities. How could he not? With two brothers already in the NFL and two successful seasons at Washington under his belt, there is plenty of confidence to be had. The senior cornerback plans to use that confidence to his advantage in 2011, and that could mean good things for all parties involved.
Well, maybe not the rest of the teams in the new Pac-12, but that's probably the plan for Trufant.
A nice piece written by Gregg Bell of GoHuskies.com has the details. Here are the highlights:
Trufant arrived at UW from Tacoma, Wash., in 2009. That's when Richardson, benched at the time at the other corner spot, looked at Trufant and saw a confident freshman starter. Where did that come from?
From him listening to two older brothers who are now cornerbacks in the NFL: Marcus, with the Seattle Seahawks, and Isaiah of the Philadelphia Eagles.
"Just seeing Desmond come in with that confidence, telling himself `next play' if he got beat, that was a real eye-opener for me," senior Quinton Richardson said.
Everyone knows of little brothers trying to live up to their big brother's name. Apparently, it's even more so in Trufant's case.
This month, Trufant has been shutting down his own teammates, with thudding plays. Huskies are still talking about the shoulder slam the 6-foot, 184-pound Trufant put into Austin Seferian-Jenkins' chest during a mid-August practice. It was about the only time since the 6-6, 257-pound tight end enrolled in late March that anyone has been able to separate Seferian-Jenkins from a reception.
Wednesday, Trufant belted another camp star, Kevin Smith, to break up a catch at the sideline.
This is the kind of determination and play that is going to wreck havoc on the conference as the Huskies look to rebuild and move forward after the departure of Jake Locker and company.
Trufant started nine games and broke up eight passes as a true freshman in 2009.
But his confidence dipped along with his performance as a sophomore early last season. He now says he was neglecting the "little things" and got easily distracted from his task at hand.
That's where brother Marcus, a Pro Bowl cornerback for the Seahawks in the 2007 season, knows best.
"He's told me, `Get rid of the distractions. Don't care who's at the game, how good you are. Don't try to live up to the name. Just go out, play hard and have fun,'" Desmond said.
"Whenever I've done that, I've been successful. And whenever I worried about those types of things, that wasn't good. Those mistakes were necessary to get where I am now."
The best and most successful athletes are the ones capable of learning from their mistakes and improving from them. It sounds like Trufant is ready to make a big step forward in 2011. This has to get UW fans excited.
For more Huskies coverage, UW Dawg Pound is the place to check out.