Post-Scrimmage Press Conference

Coach Akey met with media after Saturday's scrimmage to give his assessment of the team's progress so far this fall. He touches on a couple position changes experimented with today, describes what the team did well today from his perspective, and describes when the team is going to get a chance to practice inside the Dome on the new RealGrass Pro field.

How did it go today?

"I think it was good today. We got a lot of good work accomplished, and I saw some plays getting made today. Deonte Jackson – there were two nice runs from him. Brian Flowers had two nice runs and was able to put it in the endzone out there…that was a good thing. I was happy with the fact that we got down to the redzone and our offense was able to get points out of it and score – we got a couple touchdowns there. That's a positive. I think our defense still did a nice job of flying around. We got two interceptions – Bryan Williams had one and Stanley Franks had another one that I think was tipped by Brandon Ogletree. So, there were more big plays made on both sides of the ball today and I was happy about that; very happy about that. The one disappointment that I might have today was there were more yellow flags flying around out here today. A lot of those can be taken care of before the snap. I think two of them were because the defense jumped off sides, and two of them were illegal procedures by the offense. There also was a PI and a holding for the rest of it. So, in regards to playing the right way, I think it was pretty good. We just need to be a little more disciplined at the start of the play. [Overall] progress was certainly made."


Do you feel like your defense is about where you want it to be at this time?

"I like the progress very much that they've made. I like the way that they're flying around, and we've got some time to fix some of the little things. You know, like that long run – where I was happy as heck to see that – and you know, matter of fact, Jayson Bird had himself a nice long run too. Some of that also applies to the leverage of the defense. Bird did a nice job breaking a tackle. It all kind of works both ways. There are some things we can clean up in regards to keeping leverage, but I think in regards to defending the run and things like that – some good pass pressure – yeah, we're making good strides."


Overall, is the team where you need to be right now at this time of the season?

"I think yes. We always want to progress a little more, and we even saw it today. We took a look at moving some guys around a little bit within what they do, to try to help fix some things. We get a little bit of a measuring stick each day, but I like the progress that we've made. We certainly still need more, I'm not saying we're that "polished apple" yet. We're still working on that, but I do like where we're at, and obviously we're going to push fast forward – we'd like to get a lot better fast."


Is it still Nathan Enderle, Brian Nooy, and Chris Joseph [QB depth chart order]? It looked like Joseph might have moved up a notch?

"He did get a lot of reps today, and Enderle certainly still is our starting quarterback. Enderle's doing a nice job, he's progressing really well – he did some very smart things out here today. Turning some things into runs and stuff like that, and I was happy with what he did out there. Joseph got himself a little extra opportunity, and Nooy got a chance to see things from a different viewpoint. So yeah, it still stays the same."


Billy Bates and Kris Anderson flip-flopped tackles today, is that an experiment or permanent?

"We're seeing if we can help secure the backside of the quarterback, and if that is a better answer than the other answer. It's not a done deal yet, we're going to have to continue to take a look at it because it's the first time we've done it [in a game situation]. We put Kris in a tough situation. He's been obviously very comfortable playing that right tackle for a long time, even before we got here. We threw him into a combative situation to play the other side today, and that was for a purpose. We wanted to test him and see how he was able to handle that. We'll work it a little bit more and see what is going to be the best case scenario."


It looked like there was a lot of rotation with the runningbacks today. Brian Flowers going out with the ones, Deonte Jackson with the twos a little bit. Is that permanent?

"We don't want Deonte carrying too terribly much, and obviously we want Brian to get some looks. We still want the Birdman to get some looks. But I like very much the way that Deonte is carrying the ball, and those other two both made good runs too, so I think that's a very good thing."


Is Raymond Fry going to be back?

"I think it's going to be about another week with rehab before he'll be back on the practice field."


What about Max Komar, was he out with an injury?

"It was precautionary as much as anything. He's a guy who is pretty solid in what he is doing for us, we're able to count on him to be where he belongs. He had a little ding the other day. He didn't need to have some of these reps today, so we gave some other guys the chance to get those reps. If we were playing a football game today, he would have played today."


Was Fonomanu Sekona also out today?

"We're waiting for the Clearinghouse to clear him. We're waiting for the Clearinghouse to clear a couple of them."


Steven Brown, was he held out today…

"Yes, he was out today. We anticipate having him back on Tuesday.

We also anticipate practicing in that big Dome on Tuesday; they've got that field looking pretty good in there right now. If it's ready to go Tuesday, we will be in there. I want these guys to get used to it. If it's going to be a home field advantage it needs to be a home field advantage, so we need to work out in there to make sure that it is. I'm really anxious to get on that new field, and get the kids in there to see how it feels so that they get used to playing in there. Not that many people get an opportunity to play in a dome, so it's going to be a difficult thing for other people when they come in here. We need to make sure it's home for us."

FIRST LOOK - The new RealGrass Pro field is nearing completion. The lines have one coat of "paint" on them now and will get their second coat soon. The team is expected to begin practicing on the field on Tuesday.



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