The Cisco Kid

At the end of spring practice much of the buzz surrounding the Golden Eagles' offense was about the emergence of walk on receiver Francisco Llanos. With just over a week of fall practice under his belt, the Tampa, Florida native is proving that his play this spring was no flash in the pan. The redshirt freshman is making his case for playing time and as a bona fide threat in the USM arsenal.

Francisco Llanos profile

"Practice is going really good," said Llanos. "I am just out there competing and trying to get better in everything I do.

"Coach Kasey Dunn is always talking to us about competing. He is pushing us to get better everyday."

The road to Hattiesburg, Mississippi for the west Florida standout was paved with it's share of frustration with the recruiting process.

"My wide receiver coach in high school played for Coach Fedora at MTSU (Middle Tennessee State)," explained Francisco. "He gave Coach Fedora a call for me and it worked out for me."

Last season Llanos dedicated himself to sharpening his skills and preparing for the day when he could make a contribution on the field.

"I put on about 10 to 15 pounds and I just worked to get better," said Francisco of his 2009 progress. "I worked a lot with Coach Kasey Dunn and he made me better. We worked a lot on my route running and just becoming a more complete player."

With Austin Davis back behind center and defenses focusing a lot of attention on junior wide out DeAndre Brown, there will be opportunities for other players to move the chains this fall.

Llanos is ready to his part, but he believes opposing defenses are going to have their hands full with the Southern Miss passing attack.

"We have a lot of talent at receiver," said Francisco. "I feel that if we all continue to work hard and we continue to get better that we can be not only one of the best groups in the conference, but in the entire nation."

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