Annotated Spring Practice

PW offers an annotated guide to Northwestern's 2013 spring drills.

Offensive MVP: Rashad Lawrence

Lawrence looks like the potential breakout receiver in a loaded unit. He served as the possession receiver throughout 2012, but could be a vertical threat in next year's offense.

Defensive MVP: Traveon Henry

With his physicality, size and overall skill, Traveon Henry pulled away in the safety competition and will almost certainly start alongside Ibraheim Campbell.

Leadership Award: Damien Proby

During an early spring practice, the injured Damien Proby stood on the sidelines—barking out instructions to the young linebacker unit. Instead of resting idly, he showed the leadership characteristic of the defense.

Offensive Sleeper: Malin Jones

With his impressive versatility, Jones could contribute to this cloudy backfield situation. The Wildcats have five players who could see significant action. We're betting on Malin to make some noise.

Defensive Sleeper: Eric Wilson

An NFL scout turned to me before Pro Day, and asked about one person: "35, the linebacker." Eric Wilson–before people had truly recognized his talent–showed his incredible athleticism.

Practice Notes

February 27
"5:03" was on Northwestern workout shirts, reminding players how close they were to an undefeated season.

February 28
Brandon Vitabile emerged as teacher for the young offensive line, which played fairly well in practice.

March 5
Rashad Lawrence–the Purple Wildcats consensus MVP of Spring Practice–dominated to increase his expectations come fall.

March 7
Jimmy Hall made a statement with his emotional play, drawing praise from Pat Fitzgerald.

March 12
Christian Jones had his finest outing of Spring; Zack Oliver demonstrated his arm strength.

March 16
Linebacker Joseph Jones continued to impress in spring drills.

April 6
Traveon Henry showcased his high ceiling with an impressive hit in open space.

April 9
C.J. Bryant and Daniel Jones had strong performances, which intensified the competition for the second starting position.

April 13
Treyvon Green and Malin Jones played at a high level between the tackles.

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