Rip Scherer has returned to a coaching capacity and sounds excited to work with the tight ends group at UCLA.
The assistant coach broke down his expectations for the position in the offense, what Nate Iese brings to the group, his own recruiting responsibilities and more.
Check out the video interview below:
I've really missed it. When I first came here and Dan Guerrero gave me an opportunity with administration, I tried to convince myself I was done coaching, but being around Coach Mora and this program, I missed the players and competition. About two years ago, Coach Mora brought up the opportunity. I appreciate Dan being understanding and this being what I wanted to do.
On the tight ends:
Its a work in progress, especially since we didn't have a true tight end for the last four years, so we're trying to create one from different position groups. We have two different types of tight ends. As a group, we're making progress. We have a long way to go.
On Nate Iese:
He's played the position or a position as close to tight end as possible, therefore, he's ahead of the curve so he understands the fundamentals and techniques. I expect a lot out of him. This is his last year and he wants to leave a mark and set the bar. We've set the bar together very high for him. He's got the ability
On how he envisions the tight ends:
It has to be a position that is a really good blocking position. We have to be able to block defensive ends and tackles at times, so big, strong athletes, so guys that have strength and girth and size. Guys with length. We have an outstanding quarterback and a chance to throw the ball well and want the tight end to be an integral part of the passing game. Its that combination and fine line of athlete, making plays in space and catching the ball.
On if the pass-catching will be less featured:
In the past the Y position was a fourth receiver. He was very rarely attached to the tackle. Now we're attached to the tackle. Naturally the production at the position may diminish, but it may be enhanced.
On Austin Roberts:
He's been real positive, he's been playing F tight end. Some perceive that position to be a receiving tight end, so he'll play in the slot, but also play at the line of scrimmage. He has the explosiveness of the receiver, but he has pretty good punch. He's getting bigger and stronger. That allows him to compensate for an inch or two.
On incoming tight ends:
The opportunity will be there for everyone to compete, Caleb and Jordan, they certainly have the body types, but until we see them out on the field, learning wise, physically, running, blocking and catching, just the sheer numbers would give them a great opportunity.
On his recruiting area:
I have parts of Temecula area, the Inland Empire, parts of Orange County, Portland and the Southeast a little and my familiarity in coaching. We all end up recruiting, I'll be heavily involved with tight ends, we've been recruiting a number of guys.