8/23 (Friday) Afternoon Practice Report

After a week filled with defensive highlights, two giant heroes dominated Friday's afternoon practice in full pads. You probably aren't expecting either one. The first underscores a receiving corps that looks deeper and more talented each day. The second is the first real sign that Stanford has a nasty running game ready for BuddyBall. Read all about it!

  • The one star that might surprise you, but who did not surprise me, was Greg Camarillo. He put together no less than four top-drawer highlight reel grabs this afternoon. And I wasn't watching the WRs the whole time by any stretch. We are talking about one-handed grabs, diving grabs, sideline-leaners and scoop-off-the-ground specials in one afternoon. Better stuff there than half the other receivers have done over the course of the past week. I wish I had photos of the grabs, but I was too busy jabbing away with Booties on the rail (I will withhold their names to protect the 'innocent'). And this on top of a play Camarillo had yesterday afternoon that was so good that David Kelly ran over and gave him a big bear hug. Now, I wrote before this season that Greg was probably the most consistent receiver with the best hands on this team. Several players on the team have told me how good they think Greg is. Coach Kelly has sung his praises to me. But Greg has about as much visibility as Tom Holmoe in the Cal Athletics Hall of Fame when it comes time for the media or even Booties right here on our message boards to talk about Stanford's star-studded receiving corps. Well, that crap has to stop. This kid is far better than the world is acknowledging.
  • The star who surprised me today was Kerry Carter. Now, he has some star power and is the clear starting tailback on a veteran-loaded offense, but he has been mostly quiet this past week. I guess I should qualify that and widen the scope to say that the entire running game has been mostly quiet this past week. JR Lemon provided most of the sparks, with Kerry, Justin Faust and Kenny Tolon providing just a few flashes. Well, Kerry produced his first really great run yesterday afternoon, which piqued my interest at the time, but I erred in forgetting to write in up in my practice report. Then Kerry squeezed off three fantastic runs today, all for long touchdowns, that would shock you. He ran with greater force, quickness and fluidity than any previous incarnation of Kerry Carter we have seen at Stanford - pretty much untouched or unfazed through the entire defense. Kerry worked his body via Ron Forbes' off-season weight room regimen to the point that he is markedly bigger and yet at least a step faster. The result is the biggest and most mobile Canadian you will ever hope to avoid in a dark alley... eh? You know what I'm talkin' a-boot. But seriously, KC just moved up in my book from a good Stanford runner to a very real NFL prospect. Watch out: "Cutter" has truly arrived.
  • In case you are worried that Buddy's injury report was really him feeding me a load of bunk (i.e. talking up players who will be back playing before ya know it), note this: Greg Schindler indeed is A-OK and fully participated in this afternoon's practice. So I hope you took notes from my story on this morning's practice, cuz here is the #2 O-line I saw today now that Schindler took his rightful place with the #1s. Sullivan and O'Neal unchanged at the tackles. Brian Head slides back to center, while Jeff Edwards and David Beall were again at the left and right guard spots. Hmm. Very strange. And I don't believe it. Dustin Stimson has to be the prime utility man with these #2's, and most likely at (left) guard. I don't believe that a career guard at Stanford moves to center this week and vanishes from the guard depth. I'll watch this again tomorrow to see what settles in. One take-home lesson with fair certainty, though, is that David Beall is settling in at guard. If Brian Head and Dustin Stimson are seen as the center reserves, then David can stick to one position and stop the game of hopscotch. I think that's a great move, actually, and maximizes the chances for success for the true freshman.
  • Jon Alston had an outstanding sack, with a shot up the middle like a bolt of lightning. Though give a heap of credit to the DL in front of him for moving the OL off the snap...
  • I spoke with verifiable optimism about Stanford's punting prospects just a few days ago. Well, I would like to super-glue that hanging chad and recast my vote for renewed pessimism. Eric Johnson had as much hang time today on his punts as a Michael Dukakis rally in the spring of 1988. And Jay Goff didn't even get reps.
  • In case that doesn't bring you down enough, let me talk to you about the long snapping. Drew Caylor sat out while Scott Giles got some shots, which looked more like a shot-put. The expectation value, speaking statistically, for his snaps is in just the right spot at Johnson's chest. But that's the mean value of a spread array that stretches from over the head down to worm-killing. Sadly there was nothing really in between...
  • Drew Caylor is playing tricks with us, and has moved from #95 back to his old and familiar #70. At least, he has donned that for three straight practices...

The Bootleg Top Stories