MU's Tindal ready to play
HUNTINGTON -- If Marshall University football coach Doc Holliday told Corey Tindal to line up at defensive tackle, he would do it.
All 5-foot-9, 179 pounds of him.
Holliday won't require that of his sophomore defensive back. Holliday isn't certain where Tindal will play, but he is sure of one fact.
"Corey will be on the field somewhere," Holliday said.
That somewhere likely will be either as the Thundering Herd's nickel back, where Tindal played last season, or cornerback, where he has spent much of his time this spring.
"It doesn't matter," Tindal said. "I just want to be on the field."
Tindal is too productive to keep off the field. A starter in 12 of 14 games last season, Tindal was Marshall's fifth-leading tackler with 61 stops, including five for loss. He broke up six passes and recovered two fumbles. Those are impressive numbers for a red-shirt freshman. All of that production came as a fifth wheel in Marshall's secondary. Tindal has worked more at cornerback this spring.
"Cornerback is much easier," Tindal said. "Nickel is tough. At corner usually you're covering less space."
At cornerback, Tindal also usually will cover someone closer to his size and speed. At nickel back, he often was matched against taller slot receivers and even tight ends.
If Holliday asks Tindal to play nickel again, the Lauderdale Lakes, Fla., native said he'll offer no objections.
"I'm an athlete," Tindal said. "It's no problem for me."
An athlete indeed.
Tindal played defensive back, running back and wide receiver in high school. He signed to play at Florida International, a Conference USA rival of Marshall, but opted to play a prep school season at the Atlanta Sports Academy.
Tindal drew scholarship offers from Marshall, Florida International, Bowling Green, Buffalo, Maryland, Minnesota, New Mexico, New Mexico State, Toledo, Western Kentucky and Western Michigan. After sitting out his first year at Marshall as an academic non-qualifier, Tindal became a valuable starter in 2013, helping the Herd to a 10-4 record, the Conference USA East Division championship and a 31-20 victory over Maryland in the Military Bowl.
Tindal said he enjoyed last season, but expects more from himself and his team this season.
"We have to play with a chip on our shoulder," Tindal said. "It's a team sport, not an individual sport, and we all see the goal."
That attitude didn't surprise Holliday.
"Corey is a tremendous competitor," Holliday said, adding that the young defensive back is more confident in his technique this spring.
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