The pads came on for the first time this spring as the Cardinals headed into Papa John's Cardinal Stadium. ITV was on hand and brings you day three's news and notes.
It's no secret that the Cardinal defensive line lacks depth and with Bobby Leffew and Tyrone Saterfield not participating during the spring, the level of experience is lower than hoped. However, on Saturday afternoon, there were signs of potential future playmakers. Redshirt freshmen Shane Bailey and Josh Williams both were impressive on Saturday afternoon. Bailey (6'3, 277), who entered spring listed as one of the first team defensive ends, is quickly proving that he has the physical tools to become a first team contributor. Williams (6'3, 246) also displayed nice strength and foot work on Saturday during line drills and will push those ahead of him for increased snaps the remainder of spring.
Sticking with the defensive line, Chad Jorgensen, who switched from the tight end position to defensive end, also looked good on Saturday while going against junior college transfer Jeremy Darveau.
Further evidence that the field goal duties are up for grabs was witnessed on Saturday as Todd Flannery put together a string of makes, similar to the performance that Art Carmody had on Friday.
Senior Antoine Harris wore a yellow jersey on Saturday due to a concern with a foot injury, but he exhibited no signs on struggle and will likely be back to 100% shortly.
As expected, the battle at the running back position is impressive. Senior Lionel Gates appears to have improved an a stellar junior campaign and has looked the sharpest through three days. Eric Shelton has performed nearly as well, while Reggie Bradshaw has put together some of his best work while at Louisville during the start of spring practice.
Recently converted wide receiver to cornerback, Antoine Sharp has been performing as if he has been a defensive back his entire career. He had one of the better plays of the day on Saturday when he seperated a deep pass from Stefan LeFors that was in the hands of J.R. Russell.
During the light scrimmage, sophomore tight end Wayne Riles ran crisp routes and pulled in a couple nice receptions across the middle.
During our interview with safety Jon Gannon following Thursday's practice, he stated that he may not participate in contact drills during the spring. While his presence and participation was impressive enough during the first two days, on Saturday, the junior lined up at his spot in the secondary during a few of the contact plays.
Sergio Spencer, has made a few nice plays coming out the backfield, showing his elusive running ability, as well as nice hands in the flat.
Further evidence of the quality depth in the Cardinal secondary was shown on Saturday as redshirt freshman Jonathan Russell put together a nice afternoon. He continually ran stride for stride with the opposing receivers and displayed great run support.