Practice Report: 4/9

The Notre Dame football team was in full pads for practice inside the Loftus Center on Wednesday.

Irish Eyes had a few staff members in attendance. This is what they saw.

Mike Frank

Pretty much watched defense today.

Coming into the team meeting to begin practice I was once again impressed by the effort given by Eric Olsen running to the team meeting. Every thing this kid does impresses me. You can tell he's doing everything he possibly can to impress the coaches, get better, and make the most out of every minute he has. Luckily, I happened to request him tonight for an interview. Always liked the kid. He was great on Power Hour.

The D broke the team huddle and lined up in the first and second unit. Kallen Wade, Emeka Nwankwo, Ian Williams and Morrice Richardson were linemen

Brian Smith Toryan Smith and Steve Quinn at LB

Darrin Walls, Kyle McCarthy, David Bruton and Terrail Lambert were the DBs.

Second unit was Kerry Neal, Sean Cwynar, Paddy Mullen, Justin Brown on the line, Scott Smith, Harrison Smith and Kevin Washington at LB, and Raeshon McNeil, Sergio Brown, Jashaad Gaines and Gary Gray at DB.

After that drill the units broke into their first individual. The DBs worked on backpedal, again.

The D-line was doing some conditioning drills where they'd turn side to side and then do an up down and then sprint. Jappy Oliver, known as a very vocal coach, was more animated and vocal than I've ever seen him. He was getting on people and screaming out there.

I noticed Ian Williams was really dragging at the end, and Jappy was letting them have it as they were gassed the first period of practice.

One this is certain, Jappy doesn't appear happy with what he's seeing because he's always been loud, but I'm not sure I've ever seen him that loud. And he had an INTENSE look on his face.

I loved it. They probably didn't.

Lorenzo Reyes

The atmosphere during footwork and stretching seemed light and relaxed, with the players cracking jokes getting ready for the position drills.

Evan Sharpley's dad, Tom, was present. He said he was going to watch some practice, then head over and watch his other son, Ryan, pitch for the baseball team.

As usual, coach Ron Powlus went over to talk to Jimmy Clausen and Sharpley, and Weis joined in on the conversation.

I've noticed that coach Mike Haywood likes to go over and chat with the defensive backs during stretching. He greeted Raeshon McNeil, Darrin Walls, Gary Gray and others.

Powlus shows that he still has some technique. He jokingly worked on his play action fake with coach Brian Polian as the half back.

Jon Tenuta and Corwin Brown made their usual rounds, and talked about some strategy.

Newly appointed member of the Notre Dame staff, Reggie Brooks was present with his kids. Coach Haywood told him to call him so they could meet up for lunch. If you haven't seen it yet, I recommend watching his TD run against Michigan. Notice the first missed tackle. youtube.com/watch?v=X6j_GnIb2pY

Notre Dame great Joe Theismann was also present in practice, watching over the drills. Coach Bernie Parmalee stopped over to talk to him. Later, Joe Theismann watched the quarterbacks and shook hands with Clausen.

Latina seemed pretty animated as usual. I overheard him say, "F***, that's too wide, Paul," to Duncan during a drill.

The WRs worked on some footwork over the bags. "Explode through, George," Ianello said to West.

"Get it, Robbie. Move, move," Ianello said to Parris.

The quarterbacks were working with the tight ends, running quick outs. Clausen worked with Mike Ragone, but Luke Schmidt wasn't there to work with Sharpley.

Parmalee was talking about reading the defensive coverage, and working on the tight ends altering their routes to get open. Ragone seemed to understand this well, and caught a couple of nice balls from Clausen.

The WRs got their chance to go through the gauntlet much to the chagrin of the group.

It seems that after every throw Clausen makes, good or bad, Powlus heads over to talk mechanics with Clausen.

Jerry Strabley

There was a lot of chatter today and the players and coaches seemed relaxed.

Coach Weis conferred with Brian Hardin for a few minutes and then moved on to chat with several players and coaches.

There were several visiting coaches today and Coach Weis walked over and asked a group of 4-5 how are things in Texas.

When the team broke the huddle in the middle of the field to begin position drills, I went over to observe Coach Haywood with the running backs and tight ends.

The relaxed mood was no longer evident as he started off by saying, "Let's go, let's go. We have a job do to do."

James Aldridge and Armando Allen received good comments but Robert Hughes was told to hold the ball higher and keep it tight.

A couple of players kicked the bags and coach yelled at them to pick their feet up and hustle.

The figure-eight drill was next and Haywood was after all of the groups to, "Hustle, hustle, squeeze that ball and hang on tight."

At one time he yelled out, "33 what are you doing back. You don't even have a ball. You have to be ready all of the time."

Toward the end of the drill, only two players stepped up and coach yelled, "Give me a third guy; I don't care who it is." Aldridge jumped in to fill the spot.

I observed Coach Latina and the offensive line for a short time. Again, the mood was not pleasant.

The drill was a three-on-three and Latina was after Duncan saying, "You were too wide Paul; get it done again." He also yelled at others to continue, don't let up.

During the individual sled drill Olsen, Robinson and Stewart were told, "You have to drive, drive. Keep your feet moving."


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