To accomplish that, Petrino brought out the yard markers and referees Friday morning for an intense, controlled scrimmage that lasted nearly an hour and a half. What he saw was an active defense that flew around the field - making plays and batting down passes at a nice clip.
"It was a controlled scrimmage," Petrino said afterward. "I wanted to see us tackle and get our guys running to the ball. I didn't worry too much about scheme because we just wanted our players to line up, run hard and make plays."
Petrino also said after the scrimmage that he was pleased with how his defense ran to the ball.
"I think we started to see [the defense] running to ball and that's always hard to do, because when we practice we want everyone to stay up and stay healthy, but when we scrimmage we want them to fly around and go full speed. You have to have a good balance of it because you want everyone ready for that first game," said Petrino.
The Cardinals run game also looked solid, with junior Michael Bush picking up the tough yards off-tackle. While Petrino sounded fairly pleased with his running backs after the scrimmage, it was clear he wants to see them make more big plays.
Bobby Petrino sounded pleased
with his defenses energy after
Friday mornings scrimmage.
Though the pass defense, especially from the first team, was solid during the scrimmage, U of L's wide receivers managed to make several big plays. Mario Urrutia turned in an outstanding performance. The 6-6 redshirt freshman wide receiver caught three touchdown passes, including two 60 yarders from backup quarterback Hunter Cantwell and one covering 25 yards when he out-jumped cornerback Bobby Buchanan in the endzone.
"I thought [our receivers] came out and made some big plays which is something we needed to do," offensive coordinator Paul Petrino said. "We've got to clean up some little details on a few routes and be a little bit better on third down. But we made some big plays and came out and played hard."
Brandon Cox and Adrian Grady played solidly for the second team defense. Cox, an end, intercepted a Hunter Cantwell pass in the flat, while Grady, a backup tackle, recorded a sack. True freshman tackle Earl Heyman made one tackle for loss against the third-team defense.
Fullback Brock Bolen, a transfer from Illinois, made the longest run of the scrimmage of the third team defense, breaking a tackle near the line of scrimmage before out-running several defenders in pursuit.