Monday AM practice report

Today is the first day in pads for the Trojans and the freshmen got a break this morning as overcast skies kept things cool during their workout. The veterans will hold their practice this afternoon.

The coaches spent a lot of time on punt team work this morning. They went over the details of how they want the players to block, how they want them to run downfield and how they want them to approach a ball carrier to make a tackle. Travon Patterson, Emmanuel Moody and Stafon Johnson were back returning punts.

A situational drill was held on Brian Kennedy Field and the biggest hit of the day came when Shareece Wright tried to come up and make a tackle on Jimmy Miller. Shareece came in too high and bounced right off Miller before falling to the ground. Wright had a reputation as a big hitter in high school but he was quickly reminded that he is on another level now. Miller is at 255 pounds right now and he's looked solid so far in camp. Both Moody and Johnson had fumbles during the drill and were forced to run a penalty lap.

Garrett Green and Mike McDonald took turns at quarterback during the day. Green did a good job of leading the offense down the field on his first drive, after that it was McDonald who led a couple touchdown drives. The offenses operated under game conditions with down and distance measurements and real drives as opposed to a common practice tactic of bringing the ball back to the same spot after each play. On Green's first drive, he got the ball inside the five but Derek Simmons and Nick Garratt combined to make a nice stop on Stafon. On the next series, Simmons knocked down a pass at the line. Green also tried to go deep but his ball was overthrown and Alfred Rowe settled in for the easy interception before a 15 yard runback, he was knocked out of bounds by a decent shot from Green.

On the first series for McDonald, Clay Matthews came in for the sack. Mike then dropped back, waited for the rush to come in, and then calmly dumped a middle screen to C.J. Gable who raced downfield (nice block downfield by Charles Brown) for a 40 yard score. On his next drive Mike hit David Ausberry with a short slant pass for a touchdown.

On the final drive, Luthur Brown had a big tackle on Stafon at the line of scrimmage. Gable tried a cutback move along the left side but Derek Simmons slid along the line and made the stop for no gain. Mike Davis wrapped Gable up around the legs after a short run and then a pass attempt to Nick Vanderboom in the end zone was broken up by Taylor Mays. Stafon Johnson ended the day when he scooted around the right end for a eight yard touchdown run.


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