Spring Practice - Day Six

Our spring coverage is the only way you can get daily progress on the ups and downs of Stanford spring practices, and most of our reports are available only to premium subscribers. But this day's notes are available to the general public for a sampling. Check out a play-by-play of the scrimmage at the end of practice, plus an update on the dicey long snapping and punting...

After being spoiled by exciting scrimmage action Monday and Wednesday, this Friday afternoon workout left us hanging. The scrimmage session at the end of this practice went just three series, and the third was a quick three-and-out. I did take down the play-by-play, though, and here it is:

#1 offense vs #3 defense

(Trent Edwards at quarterback)
1st & 10: incomplete pass to Kris Bonifas (dropped ball)
2nd & 10: Kenneth Tolon run for four yards
3rd & 6: incomplete pass to Alex Smith (broken up by Timi Wusu)
4th & 6: Alex Smith reception for six yards
1st & 10: Kenneth Tolon run for two yards (David Jackson tackle)
2nd & 8: incomplete pass to Evan Moore (through his hands)
3rd & 8: Alex Smith reception for seven yards
4th & 1: Matt Traverso touchdown reception off play-action (Bonifas and J.R. Lemon in I-formation)
PAT good by Michael Sgroi (Greg Camarillo hold)

#3 offense vs #1 defense

(Ryan Eklund at quarterback)
1st & 10: Mike Miller reception for seven yards (Oshiomogho Atogwe tackle)
2nd & 3: Jason Evans run for no gain (Jared Newberry tackle)
3rd & 3: Marcus McCutcheon reception for seven yards (nice hands!)
(T.C. Ostrander for Eklund at quarterback)
1st & 10: David Marrero run for loss of two yards (Babatunde Oshinowo blew up middle)
2nd & 12: Marrero run for five yards on pitch
3rd & 7: incomplete pass to David Lofton
(Lofton for Ostrander at quarterback)
4th & 7: Lofton tripped up behind line of scrimmage (Oshinowo blew up middle)

#2 offense vs #2 defense

(Lofton still at quarterback)
1st & 10: quarterback sack by Chris Horn
2nd & 13: Marrero run outside for one yard (Nick Sanchez tackle)
3rd & 12: incomplete screen pass to Marrero (jarring hit by Tim Sims to break up)

Two areas I watched during the practice drills before the brief scrimmage were the punting and the one-on-one OL vs DL battles. It was noteworthy that the coaching staff decided to go through the exact same punting work that they did Wednesday. Typically you would see special teams rotate through their various units in consecutive practices, but the work was so poor Wednesday that it had to be repeated Friday. The good news is that the snapping and punting were both much improved. I thought Jay Ottovegio hit the ball very well, and he continues to get his punts off very quickly at this age/experience. Probably six different players joined in the long snapping, with the surprise coming from Jared Newberry.

There are two types of long snapping required on special teams: punts and field goals/PATs. Jon Cochran looks like the #1 snapper for the FG/PAT work, with Preston Clover backing him up. Cochran is also in the mix for the long snapping for punts, but you need the additional requirement of running down the field and covering after you snap. A jumbo body like Cochran's is not well suited for that duty, especially when he is currently slated to get a load of work as the starting left tackle. This is the snapping job that is wide open, and in addition to Cochran you should look for Newberry, Patrick Danahy and David Bergeron.

In the OL vs DL drills, I was impressed by the performances of the interior linemen. Brian Head went head to head against Babatunde Oshinowo and held his own. Big Baba drove him back a little bit one time, but Head did a good job keeping squarely in front of him and holding his ground another battle. I was also impressed with Ismail Simpson and Mikal Brewer in their battles.

  • Defensive end Will Svitek donned a yellow jersey and was out of action for this practice. He was having some pain Wednesday - I believe in his knee, related to an inflamed or popped bursa sac.
  • Modesto recruit Brad Bispo attended Friday's practice. The 6'5" tight end from Thomas Downey High School should be back next month for the Nike Camp held on the same Stanford practice field.
  • Cornerback signee Wopamo Osaisai came out to get a look at practice and is the fourth member of the 2004 class to make it on campus this spring.

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