I went to the practice field about 10:45 and it was already in full swing. The wide outs and corners were running one-on-one drills. The new plays on offense are really impressive. There's more wrinkles than a load of laundry.
Jerrell Malone has shown all fall that he will step up and be a 1A corner and today was no exception. He had at two picks in the drill with a ton of passes broken up. As soon as Aleem " the Dream" gets back in good graces, he will a force one-on-one with receivers. If he wasn't knocking the ball away, he was prying it loose after the catch.
I also saw D. Porterie throw for the first time and it was a definite treat. The QB of the Future lived up to the billing and then some.
On the other side of the field, the OL and DL were popping pads. The coaches kept the after play festivities to a minimum, to keep everyone healthy and injury-free.
Next was the 7-on-7 drills and the TE's redeemed themselves nicely from yesterday. Logan Hall and John Mulchrone were catching everything thrown their way. There was only one drop between the two, so that's much improved.
The surprise of the drill was QB walk-on Victor James. The kid can just plain sling it. His height may be his only drawback ( about 5'11"). He got it out to the receivers with some velocity.
CB Ian Clark from Highland HS was holding his own again today. Physically, he's ready to play, he just needs to learn the scheme better to get on the field this year.
Quincy Black had an int. off a deflection and took it to the house.
Special Teams followed, and did anyone mention Tyler Gaus had a serious leg? Just thought I'd bring it up. He had hang time of 4.5-4.7 seconds on his punts, which is crazy.
The 2:00 drills finished up the day for the starters and boy, have our wide outs stepped up. Hank, Travis, and Marcus have really come on as of late. Hank just makes play after play. I watched Travis Brown catch a pass going out of bounds and still get both feet in. Marcus runs the triple option with Kole this year than last, and that's a real compliment.
OFFENSE PLAYER OF THE DAY:
Aaron Brack WR
You heard me right. He received praise from Coach Dodd during one-on-one drills for just out working the defender again and again. I think he's finally found his position. During the 2:00 drill, he had an 50 yard over the shoulder catch that was just ridiculous. Had it been thrown a little farther up field....
DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE DAY:
The kid just works his butt off. I am calling it now, he will have 8-10 forced fumbles with the ball stripping technique he's working on, come this fall.
Hank Baskett WR
I could give it to a lot of player but I have never seen a WR take over like Hank. He just doesn't drop the ball. period.
FRESHMAN YOU"LL BE HEARING ABOUT:
Ian Clark CB
Put him in the game coach!!!!
Tonight's scrimmage featured some wet weather conditions as tonight's practice sessions were delayed around: 30 minutes due to lightning. (My wife said someone was hit in the NW part of Albuquerque tonight, so yes the weather was rough.)
Once it was clear the lightning was out of the area Rocky Long brought his version of thunder and lightning out as the players warmed up for some scrimmage action. I say lightning because the offense did light it up… for 3 big plays. I say thunder, because the defense was bone jarring and they did score some nice sacks, a safety, a touchdown, and just some good ‘ol fashioned Lobo defense.
"You saw 3 big plays and you think the offense is ready." –Lobo Coach Rocky Long
Well… Okay so there is a reason Rocky Long is the head coach of this football team and I'm just a crazy dude wearing a red wig in the end zone.
I was very enamored by a 60+ yard run from Adrian Byrd as he had a wide-open hole around the right corner. He started running out of steam running up the sideline and tried to escape pursuit by cutting back into the middle of the field when #11 caught up from behind and sent Byrd sprawling to the ground. (This is the 2nd time so far this fall that I've seen Black catch a player from behind like that. The first was 2 days ago when he caught up to Hank Baskett and pulled him down.)
That was followed up with Kole Mc Kamey keeping the ball on a pitch play. Unlike Adrian, Kole wasn't caught… What an explosive run reminiscent of last year's Mc Kamey run vs. Wyoming.
Final huge play was Kole Mc Kamey airing out a 50+ yard pass to Marcus Smith who beat his defender. Once Smith has the ball in his hands there is no catching him.
So I have to admit Coach… The offense looked pretty good.
"Sure you noticed the 3 big plays, but you didn't mention the safety, couldn't push it in from a couple yards out, and failed to pick up plenty of first downs." –Rocky Long
Okay Coach you got me. I didn't mention those plays, but I will say that since I've been going out to practice and watching the Lobos this is the first time I will say I don't believe the defense is light years ahead of the offense.
I have to single out two guys tonight that were just devastating! Devastating I say! I'm pretty sure he was wearing #56 and that it was Mike Mohoric was unbelievable. He forced a fumble (maybe it would be considered a pass defense) when he popped the ball out of a tight ends' hands right into the waiting hands of Joe Selander who took the ball in for the six!
The other was Tyson Ditmore. Tyson who if I'm following closely is playing with the second team at the safety position continues to make a push for a starting job.
"Are they as good as any offense I have had this year… I don't know" –Rocky Long
Never let it be said The Rock can't see these questions coming. Okay Rocky you got me. Checkmate! I was hoping you would say the offense looks the best it has for an opening scrimmage since you've been here. I'm freaking guilty okay!
I do know this however… I saw Kole Mc Kamey run for a touchdown, throw for 2 more touchdowns, and Adrian Byrd's run set up a field goal for Kenny Byrd. That has me looking at 24 points. The defense also had a touchdown and forced a safety, we are now looking at 33 points total… Not a bad score vs. any team the Lobos play this year…
"We did some nice things out there tonight, but we aren't anywhere close to a finished product." –Asst. Coach Dan Dodd
Bah… Leave it to the coaches to make me look like a… fan!
Offensive Player of the Game
#12 Kole Mc Kamey
Once again a 60+ yard touchdown run, a 60 yard touchdown pass, and a 9 yard touchdown pass… Not a bad night at all
Defensive Player of the Game
Okay what the hell is going on here? 3 reports all pumped up with the play of Tyson Ditmore. Ah what the heck, not only is he playing hard fighting for a starting spot, but he is also a Red Menace guy since he started being recruited by UNM!
** Sorry no pictures or videos of today's practices as I didn't want our camera to get ruined with the rain.