Spring practice nears an end

With the final week of spring ball underway, the Wildcat football team got an unexpected visitor at their practice today. Linebacker Kirk Johnson had surgery on his meniscus and came right to practice following the procedure.

"He told them he wanted to come to practice," John Mackovic said. "They drove him over right after he was released. He is on crutches and still has his bag on and everything."

The team continued to gear up for the spring game on Saturday, working on a lot of the little things.

"We had a good hard work day," Mackovic said "I wasn't satisfied (last) Friday with pass protection, but we made good progress today."

The wide receivers worked on blocking, footwork and diving catches. Coach Rob Ianello continually called for good footwork and technique. During the diving drill he even required the receivers to show the ball to the referee after a successful diving catch.

The quarterbacks worked a lot on their accuracy as well as throwing on the run. With the QB's working by themselves, the linemen, tight ends and running backs worked on various blocking schemes.

With the offensive players broken up into individual positions, the defense worked as a complete unit. The group went through various sets, including their base, nickel and goal line sets.

The teams then shifted into different groups. The QB's, DB's and WR's worked on 1-on-1 drills inside the 20 yard line. The offense had a slight advantage but Michael Jolivette had a nice deflection and a couple of receivers were knocked down after being bumped at the line.

During the 1-on-1 drill the o-line and d-line battled, the LB's and Safeties worked on fumbles and the RB's were hitting the blocking sleds.

The offensive line had a great day, especially during some goal-line situations.

"The offense, with one day's notice, had some really nice plays," Mackovic noted. "And the defense had some hits, too."


*Mike Bell continued to be limited with the effects of a concussion. He participated a bit, but had no contact.

*Several of last season's seniors were in attendance including Steven Grace, Kevin Barry and Austin Uku. Tremaine Cox also watched the majority of practice.


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