While the team came out in shorts this morning for a majority special team dominated practice, the attitude and action of some guys has definitely changed for the better this semester.
Reynaldo Hill looked like a completely new guy out there during drills. He was much more aggressive in both secondary and kickoff coverage drills then in the past 2 years I have seen him. He told me after that getting more physical in coverage was his focus during the off-season. I will have my eye on him during tonight's scrimmage for a better gauge of his progression.
In the only scrap of the morning practice Carlton Medder was knocked on his haunches during 11-on-11 by a coach for fighting with who I believe was Derrick Harvey. Having my first look at Harvey today I saw plenty of quickness and moves from him. I don't expect him to red shirt this year.
Markell Thompson has slimmed down his 6'7 frame noticeably as well, and while on the TE subject, I heard Tate Casey saying he was extremely tight in his hamstrings to the point he called a trainer over to wrap him up. Joe Cohen also claimed he was tight in the hammys.
A Rolling Stone Gets No Moss
I got my first glimpse of Tex Moss at LB today and the jury is still out on this move. Jarvis showed the ability to bring the heat during drills, but I don't see him backpedaling into coverage from the LB spot. He seems pretty healthy and a little heavier then when I last saw him. One positive of the LB move is the experience he is getting all over the field. Jarvis got to play on the kick coverage team and I heard Coach Dixon tell him, "You are going to help us a lot this year."
Zook Disch's it out
Coach Zook continued to keep his eye out on the secondary and teaming up with Disch on drills. While the improvement of Vernell Brown has been remarkable, one particular drill got spicy this morning. The drill consists of secondary members reacting to a hand off and pursuing the runner.
At one point, Brown didn't pursue as the weak side corner the way he should and Zook let him have it. Deshawn Carter also struggled in this run support drill. Zook yelled out to the guys to look at Jarvis Herring and Rey Hill as examples.
Get Your Kicks
Special Teams was the focus of this mornings practice as noted earlier. Your first team kick coverage team consists of a front line of Tony Joiner, Brandon Siler, Zep Augustine, Earl Everett, and Corey Bailey. Behind them are Jarvis Moss and Joe Cohen as the shoulder blockers. Billy Latsko and Eric Rutledge behind them are the go guys for the returners who today were Andre Caldwell and Reggie Lewis.
The Gators need to continue to practice this in light of last year's kick off mishaps.