Second session yields better results for QB's

Following ASU's second spring practice, Head Coach Dennis Erickson views the quarterback competition as a very competitive one, with no one signal caller jumping ahead of the other. What is however clearer, is the overall improvement Brock Osweiler and Steven Threet have shown since Tuesday.

"They were better today because they were getting a better feel of it," explained Erickson following Wednesday's practice. "The biggest thing is accuracy and some of the things that they are throwing that they haven't thrown and they'll get better doing that. I like them both. They're getting all the (reps) so they should improve quite a bit."

The Arizona State head coach added that naming a starter at this position doesn't guarantee success in the fall, and if the competition is too close to call a starting signal caller won't be named at the end of spring.

"As soon as I have that feeling I will do it and that could happen at any time," said Erickson.

Keeping up with the offense

Erickson stated that the offense is still adjusting to the no huddle philosophy, but that the early results of that change have been encouraging thus far.

"That fast pace – we get a lot of enthusiasm out of it," commented Erickson. "We're coaching on the run and doing a lot of coaching on tape. I like what we're doing offensively. Defensively as we all know we are flying around making plays. The thing I noticed is guys are having a lot of fun and enjoying themselves."

ASU's head coach likes how this new offense is testing the Sun Devil defense, showing them looks that they will probably not see otherwise unless they face the University of Oregon. "The pace of it is really different and the defense has to make adjustments on the run which will really help us," said Erickson. "The great thing about if is that you get people in here in September, October with a no huddle and it's an exhausting problem trying to defend it."

The Schwab option

Junior College transfer Brice Schwab played right tackle at Palomar College, but in spring practice he is being asked to line up at left tackle. How has he been dealing with that adjustment?

"He's starting to feel more comfortable now," replied Erickson. "That's where he's going to play. He can always move to the right side depending on what happens because there will be some battles on the offensive front."

Coyle showing promise

A foot injury in last year's fall camp caused tight end Chris Coyle to redshirt. These days he's fully healthy and is showing why he was regarded already last season as one of the team's best at his position. Erickson applauded his skills as an athletic route runner and solid receiver.

"The thing that we will do with him is that in some of our formations he'll be flexed," said Erickson. "We haven't gotten to our tight ends (alignments). We will have some stuff we will do in two tight ends with no huddle. Chris is a guy that even if we get into our "20" personnel where we have split backs and three wideouts, he can be that third wideout as a tight end.

"He's been a pleasant surprise."

Erickson added that the tight end position in general is getting back to where he wants to be in terms of talent depth.

Make it official

Referees have been present at the first two practices and Erickson indicated that they are here to stay for the duration of the 15 spring sessions. He remarked that he wanted the officials to monitor alignments for linemen on both sides of the ball and players in motion, but quipped that they won't throw penalties when fights break out or on dump penalties.

"That's something that we have to control ourselves emotionally," admitted Erickson. "This team is determined to do that. What this does is that we're not going to have stupid penalties like are we holding in the secondary. Those little things become big things in big games and last year we had some penalties that hurt us."

Erickson stated that when the team goes into pads on Thursday, and during its scrimmage on Saturday that that having officials will become even more valuable.


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