What’s goin on?
Some news and notes from Tuesday, the final spring practice, before the spring season wraps up Saturday with the Blue-White scrimmage Saturday (1 p.m.) at Rentschler Field. …
– DT Julian Campenni was not dressed in pads. He left Saturday’s practice early.
– WR Shakim Phillips had the yellow jersey on but with the green cross meaning he could do some light contact work and that’s all Tuesday was and normally is anyway. Anyway when he was on the shelf it looked like Phillips was dealing with some sort of leg deal. It didn’t look like he was dealing with any more after catching a bullet on the sideline from Casey Cochran and streaking in for the score.
– WR Mike Smith continues to dazzle in practice and he’s been pretty consistent at it. Could the staff be using him as a wildcat option? He looked awfully good running it Tuesday
– RB Joe Williams stood out
– It doesn’t happen often but a quarterback, in this particular case, Chandler Whitmer, threw high to big Ryan Griffin in the end zone from the 2. First the rush was forcing Whitmer backward and second, LB Yawin Smallwood’s paw was up. The interesting thing there is the Huskies could become a force batting balls down. It’s not just Smallwood that’s been good at it. DE Jesse Joseph has knocked a few down, too.
– LB Jory Johnson had a red zone interception
– I think I’ve said this before but QB Michael Nebrich really has some hum-baby on his throws
– QB Scott McCummings (toe) participated in some drills but did not take any reps with the group QB.
– Speaking of QBs, let’s give Johnny McEntee some credit. The kid didn’t have to come back this season but we’re learning something here about J-Mac’s character and competitive spirit. And there’s something to be said for his honesty, too. For example, ask him how he thinks he did this spring?
“I think I could have made more of it. I just tried to do what I could with the reps. I could have put in a little more work but…we’ll see and hopefully I can still compete and show stuff on Saturday,” McEntee said.
And what if he’s not named the starter for the season?
“I can live with it,” McEntee said. “I just want the best guy to play, that’s it. If it’s not me I can live with it. I went a lot further than I already thought I would so…you know I’m trying to get better every year. If there’s somebody that can do my job better I don’t see why he shouldn’t play.”
“I’m not giving it up without a fight, no,” McEntee said.
– Coach Paul P:asqualoni said the spring was about the offensive line, defensive line and quarterback.
“We know a little more about the quarterback position because Lyle [McCombs] is back,” Pasqualoni said. “Lyle played 12 games for us last year I think we know what Lyle can do. Having said that we’re looking for No.2, No.3 back and I think we’re making progress there. It’s too early to say ut I think we have a couple guys who can help us there.”
– Also, here’s Pasqaloni on the 99.9 percent after being asked about this spring, with his feet and season under him versus last spring when he had only been here a couple of months.
“You’re building for the long term. There’s no quick fix. It’s the 99 percent rule which is nothing good ever comes quickly. It takes time. This game takes time to learn. No one ever became good at their craft in this game, learning their position, fast. I don’t believe it. I’ve been at every level of football. That greatness thing, those guys you can put in that great, great, greatness category, they’re like one percent of the population. There’s not a lot of those guys. For everybody else, for the rest of it, the 99 percent of us, it takes time so, we’re trying to do it the right way with the right kids and build it for the long term. That’s what we’re doing – and I feel great about that. I think we’re making progress.”
Any way to come out of the game Saturday with a starting quarterback named?
“I guess if somebody just goes 20 for 20 and makes all the right reads I guess there is but I haven’t seen that happen and I’ve been doing this 40 years. I haven’t seen it happen yet. I would say probably not.”
– Just so you know what is considered big plays allowed by the defense here it is again: A gain of 20 or more yards on the ground or rushing and a 40-yard or more pass play.
– Interesting thought by Pasqualoni with respect he quarterback competition last year and McEntee:
“I thought [McEntee] gave us everything he had every game…for Johnny it probably would have been nicer if we had it all sorted out sooner but hindsight is 20-20 and you can’t go back and say could’ve, should’ve, would’ve…”
Pasqualoni added the players are looking forward to Saturday or as he calls it, “No Life Guard On Duty”
“The coaches are on the sideline and they’re out on the field and there’s nobody telling them ‘watch out for the blitz’ or ‘watch out that’s coming, don’ forget to block that guy over there’. As much as you don’t want coaches as they’re reading the plays off the script to tell their guys what’s going on sometimes you gotta say ‘hey keep quiet, let him do it on his own’. Saturday, they’ll be out there, No Life Guard On Duty. We’ll see what happens.”
– K Chad Christen will do all the kicking in the game. Pasqualoni wants o get a good look at him. He said he’s been good but will be challenged by incoming freshman Bobby Puyol.