Brown said post-practice Wednesday morning that he would talk to Kasey Studdard in the afternoon to see if the OL/DL wants to continue to double train or instead stay on the offensive side of the ball. The head coach also said that after realizing the daunting (maybe even overwhelming) task involved in learning two positions, Brian Robison plans to stick with the LBs for at least the near future. Clint Haney, another of the double trainers, worked out with the defense this morning -- his second practice in a row with the DBs after working at RB in the Horns' first workout -- in a sign that he too may be settling in at one spot rather than attempting to learn two positions. . . .
With Studdard back on the offensive side of the ball this morning, the offense ran its first 11-man simulated running plays with a line-up of QB Vince Young, TB Selvin Young, FB Albert Hardy, LT Brett Valdez, LG Studdard, C Lyle Sendlein, RG Justin Blalock, RT Neale Tweedie (who is still wearing a green, non-contact jersey), TE David Thomas and WRs Dustin Miksch and Robert Timmons. The passing game work so far consists of work vs. air (no defense) with Young dropping back and tossing to route-running Timmons and Miksch and also with one-on-one work between the receivers and the DBs and between TE Thomas and a rotating member of the LB corps. With receivers still learning their steps and their routes and Young still working on his drop and timing on offense and with the DBs getting a crash course in Duane Akina's preferred technique and the LBs rotating in at a position many of them don't project to play on defense, and with all of them playing in shorts and shoulder pads rather than in full pads, the play-by-play results of these drills are almost entirely inconclusive re: which of the guys participating is pulling ahead in the playing time battle at each position. That information will come once the vets are in town. What can be determined from the drills described above is the fact that all of the guys mentioned have enormous raw physical ability, and that ability will give them an opportunity to compete when the varsity arrives. [Editor's note: We'll provide you our thoughts on the performance of the individual players later this week after all four freshman practices are in the bag.] . . .
You can add Selvin Young's name to the mix of guys getting a look at the return spots. In the first special teams session, Edorian McCullough, Matt Melton, Timmons and Miksch were joined briefly by Selvin Young in punt return drills. Akina added a new twist, literally, to one of the drills described in Tuesday night's practice report. With their backs to the punt, the return men today were first forced to wait for the flight of the ball to reach its apex, then they had to do a 540 degree spin before trying to catch the ball. Melton became the first returner to master the toss/catch/catch challenge described yesterday, eliciting a round of applause from the gathered fans. . . .
During the practice-closing special teams session, the team worked on kick return for the first time, with the LBs, plus Hardy and Thomas filling the up positions and with Selvin Young, McCullough, Melton, Timmons, Haney and Miksch in deep return. Both McCullough and Melton couldn't control a couple of the machine-generated kicks, but both guys have been solid in shagging punts, so the drops can probably be attributed to first-time jitters. They should all receive plenty more opportunities given the coaches' desire to bolster depth at both return spots. . . .
Larry Dibbles was limited during the morning workout because of a chest cold.