Rob Report - Open Practice

A News and Notes package compiled by HN.com Senior Writer Rob Howe after Saturday's open practice at Kinnick Stadium. Get an injury update, news on the QB position, Norm Parker's absence and much more in this premium package.

QUARTERBACK:

As I posted on the premium board when I returned from open practice, Drew Tate has been named the No. 1 quarterback. He certainly looked better than Jason Manson today.

Manson had a rough day, but he mostly was working against the No. 1 defense, while Tate threw against the No. 2s and 3s.

Phillips probably took the most snaps after the Top 2. McCollom played very little, and Alexis got two reps.

Saturday really showed that the QBs need work. They really need to improve on throwing the ball down the field. They missed several open receivers.

I'm confident that things will improve as the season goes on, but it will take time.

INJURY REPORT:

It seems that Greg Dollmeyer's fractured leg is the most serious of the injuries, according to KF. He sustained the break in his lower left leg and was wearing a boot at practice today.

You can add A.J. Johnson and Ettore Ewen to the walking wounded as they were on the stationary bikes with Considine during the beginning of the the scrimmage. All three are suffering from leg injuries and didn't practice.

Considine expects to be ready for the season opener.

Tom Busch also sat out with an injury...Champ Davis is being slowed by nagging injuries...Mike Jones is working his way back into the O-line rotation. He mostly played with the second-teamers today...Kirk said that he expected David Walker to return to the field this week, but he probably won't be ready for the opener. Walker did not play on Saturday.

NEWS AND OBSERVATIONS:

Norm Parker is fighting an infection and did not participate in practice. KF said that he expects his defensive coordinator to be back for the season.

*Kirk was not happy with the tempo at which the team practiced on Saturday and let the players know it. It was the same gripe the coach had at this time last year, so I wouldn't worry too much. In watcing the offense, it does need to pick up the pace a little.

*Jermelle Lewis carried the ball only a couple of times Saturday, and Marcus Schnoor also took very few reps. Young and Simmons got most of the carries with Sims also getting quite a few plays.

The suspensions of Lewis and Simmons for the opener has forced Ferentz to ask that his RBs not be hit in practice.

*Scott Chandler lined up at WR and H-back on Saturday. This is the type of kid that the Iowa coaches can get creative with.

*James Townsend looked good on Saturday. He had Jovon burned on a fly pattern early in the scrimmage, but was overthrown by Manson. James also had a few nice underneath catches. There's not doubt that this kid has serious speed.

*Roth spend a lot of time in the offensive backfield before heading to the sidelines to let the backups get reps.

*Hinkel looks to be the No. 1 punt returner. Jovon, Holloway and Solomon also went back to field punts.

*Andrew Becker saw quite a bit of action with the first-team defense in Considine's absence. Miguel Merrick also got quite a few reps.

*Ed Miles handed out a couple of large hits on Saturday. He decleated Clinton Solomon on a punt return, which made the crowd go wild. He earlier forced a fumble with a crushing blow to Mickens.

*Simmons needs to work on his pass catching. He dropped two balls put right in his hands.

*Shada and Godfrey both were working with the second team defense. Godfrey broke up a long pass from Tate to Solomon in one-on-one coverage.

*Shada, Townsend, Dalton and Merrick put in some time as gunners on the punt coverage team.

*Schlicher coverted both of his field goal attempts in the scrimmage. They were from 42 yards.

*Ferentz said that about eight guys in competition for the five starting offensive line positions. And if you crunch those numbers, it's basically five guys for two spots, as McMahon, Elgin and Gray seem to be locked in.

*Walner Belleus looked strong in coverage today after looking a little shaky in last week's workout.


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