Fall Practice Notes for 08-20-10
“I think they have worked diligently, they have gone through the bitter times of training camp where success seems like improbable things,” Schnellenberger said of the how far the team has made it in practice. “The defense is playing a lot more confidently and were moving ahead in a matter in which I’m happy.”
The players took to the practice fields in just helmets, and worked with their individual position coaches after stretching early in the afternoon. After a quick session in which the offense and defense held a walk through of their plays and schemes, the team lined up for full 11-on-11 team drills.
Quarterback Graham Wilbert worked with the second team offense and had a pass intercepted by LB Malik Eugene on the first play of session. However Wilbert recovered from the early mistake and was able to connect with TE Alex Fick down the field on a couple of plays.
David Kooi, his competition to be the back-up, fared well when he was rotated in with the second team offense, until he threw an interception to linebacker David Hinds.
“We got to have more than one scrimmage to be able to make a determination on who the backup quarterback is going to be,” Offensive Coordinator and QB coach Darryl Jackson explained after practice. “Right now those two young men are competing, and we'll find out after camp is over with who that young man is going to be.”
The defense primarily ran the nickel package during practice with Keith Reaser as the nickel back. Intercepting a Jeff Van Camp pass in the flats and applying good coverage on the wide receivers, Reaser had an good afternoon overall as the defense's third corner.
Near the end of practice, Schnellenberger called for an overtime situationals, in which the offense got the ball at the 25 yard line. After a quarterback scramble, Van Camp found wide receiver Avery Holley in the middle of the field, which got the ball down to the one yard line. The defense was then able to hold and prevent a touchdown after back to back dropped passes by both David Muniz and Lester Jean.
The offense did however score when Kooi took control of the second team moving the ball down the red zone and connecting on a pass to DeAndre Richardson. Running back Willie Floyd took a hand off down to the 5-yard line just prior to Xavier Stinson's score up the middle on the last play of the afternoon.
“If we have a good scrimmage tomorrow then we probably very well have gotten close to what were capable of doing in a short period of time,” Schnellenberger said.
The Owls will hold the scrimmage and Fanfest Saturday afternoon at 2:00 p.m.
“We always make it 10 days before the opening game.”
-Schnellenberger on when the decision for the backup quarterback position will be made
“Improvement from last week, just to see how consistent we have become as an offense. We had a good five days of practice this week and the scrimmage is going to tell us if we have made some strides in that direction that we need to go.”
- Jackson on Saturday’s scrimmage
“What I tell them is that it’s a big test before your game, and it’s the closest thing you’re going to get to game speed two weeks before UAB. It’s very important for those guys, especially for someone like (freshman wide receiver) Marcus Cunningham who hasn’t had anything but high school football.”
-Coach Jarred Allen on the what the scrimmage means
"Besides win, I just want to execute. Look sharp out here and like we are about to go into the season. Makes all the plays, the reads, and the calls."
- Jeff Van Camp on what he hopes to accomplish on Saturday
"We didn't do much in the first scrimmage, we didn't blitz. I think it (tomorrow) will be more even keeled. Plays will have to be made as opposed to somebody making a mistake"
- Coach Van Valkenburgh on the defense during the first scrimmage
"In the Spring we won two, but we didn't close out on the last one and we lost by a point, and we know how much that hurt. Got to go out there and win this one."
- Michael Lockley on the importance of Saturday's scrimmage
Photos from today
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