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by Raj Sagar

Senior defensive end Alex Field is one of several players expected to step up and play a larger role on the UVa defensive line in 2008. He Played in all 13 games as a junior and had 11 tackles plus 1.5 sacks. A native of Ashburn, Va., Field talks about spring football to He and the rest of the Cavaliers will play the annual Spring Game Saturday at 2 p.m. at Scott Stadium. Gates open at noon for the Spring Football Festival. Admission and parking are free.

Question: How motivated are the defensive lineman to step up with all of the starters gone from last season’s line?
Everybody is always motivated to perform across all positions. We have a new group of guys on the line, and we are all ready to compete.

Question: Do you consider yourself a leader among the group?
We are a group of leaders. We motivate each other to play, and hold each other accountable for our mistakes. Obviously, some of the older guys have some experience, but there are 22 leaders on the field.

Question: Would you rather stuff a running back on third down or sack the quarterback?
Sack the quarterback.

Question: How has assistant coach (Levern) Belin done stepping up his role as the defensive line coach?
He’s a great guy, and has been around the game for sometime now. He knows the system really well, and is an all-around great guy to play for.

Question: What player on the line will surprise UVa fans next year?
I think everybody will.

Question: How about on the offensive side, what player has impressed you playing against?
Playing against Will Barker is a battle. He is a big, lean, strong body and is really playing well. John Phillips is also having a great spring.

Question: You go up against Eugene Monroe, how good can he be next season?
He is one of the best tackles across all division one football. I am looking forward to watching him crush people.

Question: You played high school lacrosse. Will you make it out to the big match with Duke after the spring game?
Yep. Definitely.

Question: You’re certified in scuba. Where did your interest in that come from?
My parents are big scuba divers, so they got me out there in the water when I was really young.

Question: What’s been your best dive experience?
We go up to New Hampshire every year to visit family. They have a lot of lakes up there that are pretty crystal clear. It’s a great time to hang out with the family, and go diving in a beautiful place.

Question: What is your dream dive?
Those lakes in New Hampshire.

Question: What is something people don’t know about you?
I enjoy reading books.

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