“I was running down there; he just beat me,” Ikard said. “He gets fired up. He's one of those guys that's a very calm, low-key guy off the field, but some of those guys are the most fiery competitors on the field and that's the way he is.”
Running back Damien Williams said the older players had to keep that in check at times, mentioning injury as well.
“As a young guy, you've got to try to keep him calm,” Williams said. “You don't want him going in there and jumping in there with everybody all the time. Guys can get hurt doing that also. He's a young guy, and this is his first time going around with it. He can do it but as the year goes on, he'll get more settled in.”
Knight appeared to get more settled in as Saturday's game progressed.
Of his first 11 passes against ULM, nine were off the mark, though Bester was able to grab one for a completion on a ball thrown behind him.
The 12th was the on-the-money throw to Saunders for his first touchdown.
Knight wound up throwing two more touchdowns, the other two in his final four throws.
Of his 11 throws that were on target Saturday, four came in those final four throws.
“It was his first game and first collegiate game ever,” Saunders said. “I kind of expected him to be a little nervous. We talked after the game and I'm looking forward to the next game and later in the season for him to be a more composed and an older-type player. I've been saying that he's real mature for his age. I think Trevor is doing very well.”
When Knight was named the starter over Blake Bell, Ikard noticed a change.
“Once he knew it was his job, he kind of flipped a switch where he was a more vocal guy, took more of a leadership role right away,” Ikard said. “We understand that he's a redshirt freshman. We don't want him to have to get out of his comfort zone but he's one of those guys, he's always been a leader. At the quarterback position, that's what you want.”