It was a windy day at Farout Field as the Tigers today took the field for their first scrimmage since spring break. Even though the offense came away with the victory, turnovers and penalties made this team look young and inexperienced.
Coach Gary Pinkel did seem disappointed in the mistakes made by the team today. "There were a lot of mistakes out there in terms of turnovers and quite a few penalties. Those types of things are obviously disappointing but hopefully we'll improve in those."
Throughout the spring, Pinkel has been very proud of the way his team has competed, and there was no change on Saturday. "There was a lot of competition. I think that that's how our football team is," Pinkel said. "The hitting was pretty good. We've still got a long way to go to be a good football team."
The defense played very well in the beginning of the day, causing a lot of trouble for the quarterbacks. both the pass rushing and downfield coverage for all three defensive teams played well for the majority of the day, but they did make a few key mistakes.
On a beautiful misdirection play, De'Vion Moore ran for a 50 plus yard touchdown. The entire second string defense ran to the wrong side of the field leaving Moore untouched.
The quarterbacks all wore orange jerseys today, which allows the defense to hit high, but cannot go for the legs or tackle them. This real time pressure may have affected their play today because none of the signal callers looked exceptionally well today.
Blaine Gabbert performed the best by completing short passes and timely third down conversions. De'Vion Moore caught a lot of passes out of the backfield including a 13 yard touchdown on a wonderful Gabbert throw.
Blaine Dalton had a decent day, especially with his feet. When plays broke down he was able to scramble for more time and extra yards very effectively.
Aside from the few plays mentioned earlier, Jimmy Costello and Ashton Glaser both turned in poor preformances.
Chase Daniel was one the sideline today helping coach the young quarterbacks through the scrimmage. Coach Pinkel thinks that this was a huge help. "(Daniel) can coach. You could hire him right now to have him coach quarterbacks, he's good enough to do it," he said. "He is a sharp guy and it really really helps us, no question. And obviously the guys that he is coaching, it means a lot to the because the have so much respect for them."
Defensively, this unit looked solid. Even though they lost, it seemed clear to me that they out preformed their opposition. They forced many fumbles and a few interceptions including two in the final two-minute drill.
Also of Note:
De'Vion Moore had a great day catching ball out of the backfield. He also faired well on the ground including his big 50 plus yard misdirection touchdown.
Linebacker Josh Tatum came out early with what looked to be a sore hamstring. Trainers stretched him and he rode the bike, but he never went back in.