[Note by Seth C, 04/08/10 11:39 AM CDT ] Bumped to the front page. Excellent work.
Good morning DTN! After a week or so off, I made it back to spring practice yesterday. Obviously, top of mind was how the offense looked without either senior QB. I was also interested in the progress of the defense, and how the wide receiver corps was progressing. I did not shoot anything this time because the staff is becoming down right fanatical about limiting pics and video at this point, and I would like to avoid being kicked out of practice. Here are some notes based on what I saw.
To my surprise, I thought both Doege and Karam already looked much more comforatable. They each made all the throws, including some deep routes, and accuracy was much improved. Doege looks more comfotable in the pocket at this point, and continues to look like the top choice for 3rd string. Karam looks to be the better runner, but in addition to some hapy feet in the pocket, his throwing motion seems odd.....I'll have to watch again to confirm. All in all, these kids are getting some valuable reps and we will be deeper than anyone in the country come the fall at QB. That said, these two are not ready for the big show when compared to their elder statesman.
In one way it is difficult to gauge the progress of the defensive line and the linebackers because they are not allowed to sack the QBs, or take runners down to the ground in practice, for the most part. That said, i can say that taken as a whole the defense has absolutely improved leaps and bounds over two weeks ago. I know this becasue yesterday was by far the most quiet practice to date, and I wasn't the only one who noticed (overheard Chris Level from RRS.com say the same). Not that Willis & Co. were docile by any means, but the defense just needed much less correction yesterday. I think this is signifigant becuase we know Tubs & Co. are throwing more at them everyday, and the substitutions were going at a feverish pace on defense. This means that even the lowest guys on the depth chart are picking up the complex scheme and everyone is needing less and less direction, and this is freeing them up to be athletes again. As we know, the 3-4 is going to put alot more DBs on the field than in the past, and if what is happening in practice translates to gameday, we are going to see alot more interceptions than we are used to from a Tech defense. THE CORNERS ARE PRESSING, AND SMACKING AT THE LINE! I know Blackbeard has been skeptical, but it's true. It doesn't happen on everydown depending on the play called by Willis, but alot of the time was spent in man,with guys like #7 Will Ford and #31 Eugene Neboh sitting in the receivers hip pocket.
Willis Quote of the Day: Screaming across the field at a LB...."Just Do what you are suposed to do"
It doesn't get any more simple than that.
Offense: Don't look now but saw some empty backfield yesterday, but only one play. Saw some trickery as well in the form of a reverse.Backs looked good, except for some drop passes by Batch. The biggest point I want to cover is this receiving corps. It has been mentioned multiple times here on DTN, that we have a "mediocre" receiving group. I will go far enough as to say that I agree that this group underwhelmed in 2009. Thats said, more experience, and the addition of one new face, has this group set to be one of the best in the country. Welcome to texas Tech Eric Ward! This kid is a monster. He layed out, dove, flew, and dragged his way to some spectacular plays, even drawing the congrats of Coach Willis. I hate to make comparisons to Crabs, but Ward makes Detron look like Mickey Peters, and Detron is no slouch himself. You combine him with Torres who refuses to drop a ball in practice, Detron who is NFL caliber talent, and Leong who may be the most athletic of them all, and I dare you to find a group more dangerous. Add to that a Franks, and a darting and slanting Zouzalick, and you got a real circus on your hands if your a defense. Mays and Douglas are also in the mix but seem to be further behind in development. #82 Adam James shows up late for practice so I am assuming he has a scheduling conflict. But when he is in there he gets looks at tight end and IR, and looks pretty decent at times. Mark this down, if we get a QB that can avoid throwing picks and a O-Line that can stop sacks, this group of receivers is going to firmly establish our position in college football as "Receiver-U". You heard it here first.
Until next time, Wreck'em.
This is a FanPost and does not necessarily reflect the views of Viva The Matadors' writers or editors. It does reflect the views of this particular fan though, which is as important as the views of Viva The Matadors' writers or editors.