Full Pads Today

Some coaches don't like the idea of having to split up spring practice due to spring break but Les Miles isn't one of them. His Tigers got back on the practice field on Wednesday after a 13-day layoff and he is looking forward to the next nine days leading up to the spring game on April 5th.

“I’ve done that before at a place I was at previously and the team has always responded well,” Miles said of the break. “The week shapes up well and the team looks very similar to the one we let go 10-15 days ago. We had good enthusiasm and I liked the start.”


After going in shells (helmet, shoulder pads and shorts) on Wednesday, the Tigers will don full pads today and then finish the week with a scheduled 2 hour and 20 minute scrimmage on Saturday morning.


This will be the Tigers second “big” scrimmage of the spring with the first being two weeks ago right before Miles let his players go for the break.


The Tigers headman enjoyed some downtime with his family during the break but he did spend a little time watching over the film from the previous scrimmage.


“We were a little bit sloppy with the ball on offense and the defense made a couple of mental mistakes that cost them big yards but I really felt like after looking at the tape I liked the performances of the team both offense and defense,” Miles said after reviewing the tape.


“I felt the offense had the opportunity to move the football and I felt like the defense was generally in the right spot and playing with good technique. In a scrimmage that I didn’t enjoy when I left the field I felt better about it after watching the film.”


Of particular interest all spring has been the quarterback position that has centered on red shirt freshman Jarrett Lee and junior transfer Andrew Hatch.


Neither guy has much experience under center on the big stage and that inexperience can sometimes lead to some risky decisions.


“I think Hatch is maybe a little further ahead with knowing the offense than Lee only because he had taken more snaps in the fall but I think Lee has a nice release and a very capable throwing motion and is making some big plays for us as well,” Miles said. “There are some similarities but both guys have to understand that that is the quarterback position and that ball is possession. That ball is the game and they have to recognize where we are throwing it and catching it at times.”


The quarterback position could get a lift in the coming days as Ryan Perrilloux’s suspension has been lifted.


Miles has not decided when the heralded signal caller will return to the field but that could happen soon.


“He’s no longer suspended,” Miles said. “He’s on the team but not with playing privilege or practice privilege. The things that I hear most are very positive. I just want to make sure he is doing the work in the classroom and taking care of his business. If he does that I think we could see him this spring.”


Note: We reported yesterday that Will Blackwell was practicing with the offensive line and Miles confirmed that he is practicing at guard.


“For a first day and for a guy who has been on the defensive side of the ball most of his life he came off the ball pretty well and looks like he may have some natural ability there,” Miles said. “I think there is some experiment to it right now but we are looking at it that we are going to go on offense for the remainder of the spring and if things go right probably stay there for the fall.”

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