Hoffman wasn't too thrilled about sitting out his first year as a redshirt. Now that he's on the roster this season, the former Del Norte High standout is ready to show the Cougars they did not make a mistake recruiting him. (Photo by Jaren Wilkey/BYU Photo)
EUREKA -- After dominating both the Six Rivers Youth Football League and the Big Five over a six-year period, former Del Norte Warrior wide receiver Cody Hoffman found himself in a very unique, and completely unfamiliar place in his first season as a member of the Brigham Young Cougars in 2009.
That being on the outside looking in, particularly on game day as Hoffman, who had been used to being in the thick of every play throughout his football career up to that point, was now a spectator.
Now heading into his second season with the Cougars, his first as a roster player, Hoffman is ready to prove that the talent and ability Cougars head coach Bronco Mendenhall spotted when he recruited the former Warrior is ready to resurface.
“I really didn’t know what to expect when I got here (to Provo). I felt like a stranger,” Hoffman admitted. “Now that I’ve been through a season, I’ve gotten a lot more comfortable with my teammates and being able to trust them. I know what to expect, and I know what is expected of me.”
The new surroundings weren’t the only major adjustment Hoffman had to go through as he went from a dominating force to the proverbial new kid on the block at the Division I level.
“It was much easier for me to dominate in high school,” Hoffman said. “The players at the college level are bigger, stronger and faster. It’s been both a physical and mental adjustment for me because the workouts are much harder (at BYU), and I’ve had to learn to prepare myself mentally to be able to play and compete at the next level.”
The transition from having been the big fish in a small pond and now being the small fish in a big pond hasn’t been without its difficulties and frustrations, but Hoffman said the process has been made much easier in large part due to the rapport he has with the Cougars coaching staff, specifically offensive coordinator/inside receivers coach Robert Anae and outside receivers coach Patrick Higgins.
“The wide receivers coaches have been real mentors to me,” Hoffman said.
Although he may not have been in a position he had grown accustomed to being in a season ago, that being a member of the scout team rather than the starting squad, tasting humble pie and earning his keep from the ground up has helped make Hoffman hungry to prove himself.
“I didn’t like red-shirting last year,” Hoffman said. “The coaches have told me that I have the opportunity to play a lot this year, but I know that if I want to play I’ll have to work harder than I did last year.”
Rest assured that if work ethic, desire to produce and natural athleticism should all introduce themselves to one another in2010, the former Warrior standout should not only achieve his personal goal, but there is no reason to believe he won’t far surpass it.
“Being able to start after red-shirting last year is my ultimate goal,” Hoffman said.