Running Backs Coach Dave Roberts

Dave Roberts took a moment to update us on his plans for the fullback position this fall as well as quick updates on a couple of players who may contribute at tailback or in the slot ...

Dave Roberts

On Curtis Rice being moved to fullback.

"Coach said to put him in there for two, three or four plays and see what he does. He's a linebacker but I gotta tell you, he looked very good (at fullback). I think when we have a coaches' meeting we'll decide if he wants to come over - but you know, it's hard to come over as a part time player. You either gotta come over and do it or not. But he, (Rice) looked very good (at fullback) and Jamie Peters responded very well when we moved Curtis over too."

Any other fullbacks or other players getting a look at fullback?

"Oh yeah, well, you'll see all of them get a look in there. I mean even Gonzie Gray will see time in there sometimes. They all need to learn the position and I think it helps their toughness. As a back you gotta be able to block somebody - so every back ... Corey Boyd is in there, Demetrius will be in there some - and he's gotten a lot better ... the toughness issue, these guys are relatively tough kids so you know, they can all play the position and I think that's a good thing."

Has Rice learned the offense already? Enough to contribute?

"No not really. You have to line it up and tell him what to do but he is getting there and he looks good so far he really does."

Any other moves to fullback like perhaps a tight end?

"No not really, we've talked about it - taking a tight end and putting him back there but we haven't done that yet. I think what we're doing is kind of waiting on Jammie Peters to come on, and he's starting to come on, and Jeffcoat is playing well - plus we're waiting on the situation with Lamar."

Will the scheme change if Lamar and some of the others do not develop soon as fullbacks?

"No, I don't think so. You don't have to be 250 pounds to block somebody. You can be 210 and block somebody - if you can block them you can block them. Cory can get it done, he's tough enough. You know Daccus played back there in the I (eye) last season so we know he can get it done. So, oh yeah, Those guys can go in there on every down."

What are you running the most in practice right now?

"There's a lot of things going on. There is the eye and the split - I think you have to find the identity of what you are going to be at this stage and I think we're closing on that right now. So I think right now we're kind of into everything."

Any observations on Albert Ashcraft so far?

"He's so lost. I mean he's just so lost. But I like him. The backs are pretty tough and you know, all of the sudden you have to block when he never had to do that before because for him it's always been 'pitch me the ball and let me run' so it's a little tough for him right now. There's a whole lot of other things going on - but he's going to be alright. It'll work out fine for him. I'm really pleased. Can he help us a lot right now? No. He's struggling to learn the little things right now like evens to the right and odds to the left but he'll be ok - he just needs some time."

Observations on Gonzie Gray and Andrea Gause so far?

"Gonzie's been the man. I think Gonzie is going to help us a lot this year. He really made his move in the spring and he has done well. He's worked hard and so has Gause. Mr. Gause has been working hard too but he has some catching up to do because he hasn't been at running back for awhile."

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