Hanging with “The Hit Stick”

The Hurricane: OK, Brandon, you know how I’m going to start off. What does the phrase “all about the U” mean to Brandon Meriweather?

Brandon Meriweather: [Laughs] That’s a good question. What it means to me is more of a pride thing, heart, pride, soul and family. Its a whole bunch of things together.

TH: If this defense keeps on playing the way it has been for the rest of the year, would you guys be satisfied or are there areas you must improve?

BM: I don’t think we would be satisfied. I think we are good now, but I don’t want to be good. I want to be great. If we become great, I will be satisfied.

TH: As of late, people are looking back to previous games and saying, “These guys kind of remind me of a defense I once saw in 2000 and 2001.” How close do you think you are to playing at that level?

BM: This team can play at any level now. In any situation, we have the players that can step up and make plays. So you can put us in any game; it can be Temple; it can be USC. No matter what team you put us against, in a pressure situation we’re going to make plays.

TH: Some people call you “The Hit Stick” for your ability to put a good lick on opposing players. Being called that, what do you think of red-shirt freshman Rashuan Jones’ hit against Temple?

BM: [Laughs] It was a nice hit. But if it were me, I think I would have hurt him.

TH: Would you say that you hit the hardest on the team, or would you give that honor to one of the bigger guys, like Spencer Adkins or Willie Williams?

BM: Right now, I would have to say Jon Beason is probably the hardest hitter on the team, backed up by me, Willie, Leon [Williams]; basically all our linebackers hit hard, as well as our secondary.

TH: Do you think you’re No. 2?

BM: [Laughs] I would say I’m in the top five.

TH: On a scale of one to 10, what would you give the team’s overall performance midway through the season?

BM: As of right now, probably a nine. We do well at times, but there are times when we get lazy and lackadaisical, and that keeps us from getting to a 10.

TH: In a few weeks, you guys are going to find yourselves in a very hostile environment in Blacksburg, Va. What would you rather do to turn off the crowd: get a pick or lay a good one on Marcus Vick?

BM: Lay a good one on Mr. Vick [laughs].

Richard Lavi