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Training Camp Position Preview: Cornerbacks
Throughout the month of August, LibertyFlames.com and the Flames Sports Network will be previewing each position on Liberty's football roster, continuing today with a look at Liberty's cornerbacks.
Along with today's written preview about the cornerbacks, FSN reporter Alan York had a chance to talk to Marshall Roberts, the senior assistant coach on Liberty's staff and the Flames' cornerbacks coach.
Liberty's cornerbacks certainly made their presence known throughout the 2011 season, recording seven of Liberty's 12 interceptions. Liberty ended the season ranked No. 43 in the country in passes intercepted.
The Flames return one of two starting cornerbacks from last season, following the graduation of KaJuan Lee. He finished his final season with the Flames with 39 stops (22 solo, 17 assisted) and a program record 100-yard interception return for a touchdown.
Walt Aikens, who had a significant impact on the program last season after transferring from Illinois, returns as a starter. The former All-Big 10 freshman honoree ranked third on the team with 49 stops (31 solo, 18 assisted) and was one of two Liberty cornerbacks with three interceptions, to go along with three forced fumbles.
Aikens is slated to start at boundary cornerback, while Kevin Fogg is scheduled to start opposite him at field cornerback. Fogg is not considered a starter statistically, but he is far from a stranger to the field with 32 games played the last three seasons.
Fogg gathered most of his national attention following his breakout year as a return specialist, but his defensive efforts were not far behind. He finished the season with 45 tackles (33 solo, 12 assisted), along with three interceptions, four pass breakups, two forced fumbles, a fumble recovery and a blocked kick.
Ryan Ayers (BC) and Kenny Scott (FC) are slated as backups at the two cornerback positions. Both gained valuable playing experience during the 2011 season, with Ayers having an impact with 19 stops (8 solo, 11 assisted).
Cornerbacks at a Glance
Walt Aikens (BC) (Jr., 6-1, 200)
Kevin Fogg (FC) (Sr., 5-10, 190)
Ryan Ayers (So., 5-10, 180)
Kenny Scott (So., 5-10, 175)
Kirby Anderson (R-Fr., 5-10, 170)
Sorie Bayoh (Jr., 5-7, 175)
Lorenzo Hoff (So., 5-9, 180)
At the end of Friday's practice, head coach Turner Gill simulated a real game situation with a last-second field goal setup for John Lunsford. The freshman quickly stepped up and easily knocked down the 40-yard kick, which promoted Gill to give his team the day off from on Saturday from all practice and film sessions.
The Flames will return to Williams Stadium, Sunday afternoon, for a light workout before having their traditional day off on Monday. Final preparation for Liberty will begin on Tuesday afternoon.