Candidates for offensive line go through their paces under the watchful eye of new assistant Brent Myers, who coaches the unit and serves as running game coordinator, responsibilities he held for three years at Arizona State.
A Few Impressions
- If today is any indication, practices will be more intense and tightly controlled with emphasis on efficiency, some of which was missing in previous seasons. The current configuration of coaches is more vocal and demanding, not mincing words, less forgiving of mistakes and shortcomings.
- Heavyweight fisticuffs broke out between offensive lineman Mark Wetterer and William Savoy on defense. Pounding punches. One heard the sounds of fists and groans before noticing the skirmish. Twenty yards away was too close for the observer. Laps followed for the combatants.
- Zach Stoudt easily has the stronger arm among the quarterbacks but Adam Froman appears to a natural leader and showed promise when asked to throw long, which was not often. Justin Burke doesn’t inspire confidence, at least not today.
- Wide receiver Scott Long appears to have recovered from the knee surgery and the complications that sidelined him most of last season. His expression tells you that Long is highly focused and intends to do well in his senior season. He has no problem catching passes.
- Darius Ashley is the real thing, with speed and toughness one would expect from a player who was the No. 1 running back on the No. 1 high school team in Ohio two seasons ago. Imagining Ashley lining up beside Victor Anderson is irresistible but some sort of rotation is more likely.
- Fullback Joe Tronzo has bulked up even more, if that’s possible, and he’s catching passes this time round, making him a greater offensive threat.
- After getting a chewing out from Steve Kragthorpe after missing the first pass thrown his way, Josh Chichester made good on the rest of his opportunities. Hint to quarterbacks: he likes them high, not around the ankles.
- Kickers Ryan Payne and Cory Goettsche were getting impressive distance on their punts. If anyone was practicing field goals, the observer missed it.
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Couple of hundred fans on hand for the opening session, most of the noise coming from Shannon over at Cardinal Dominance and Chris Burke. Shannon’s enthusiasm is contagious and he is well liked by the players. Burke did an impressive job of leading small crowd in the C-A-R-D-S cheer. Tim Bryant added some insightful comments. Fun day. Friday’s Fan Fest will be even better.