From this chair, not since 2005 when Jerome ‘The Ghost' Harrison tore up the turf at Martin Stadium has there been a running back with more one-cut ability than Caldwell is showing in the early going of fall camp.
On a day in which leather-upholstered cars were unofficially deemed un-drivable with the mercury pushing 100-degrees, the freshman running back Caldwell put more heat on the defense than the sun could ever emit.
On Day 6, Caldwell regularly exploded into the secondary with one impressive burst after another. While the experienced Galvin shows a remarkable amount of agility in his game, Caldwell may very well possess the breakaway speed the Cougs have been searching for.
"He's a very gifted young man," said Mastro. "He brings a real explosiveness that every team needs. He's having a real good camp."
As far as Galvin goes, Mastro said he very much sees the sophomore running back as a De'Anthony Thomas-type of player, a guy who needs to get the ball in his hands any way he can.
"We truly do want to get the best players on the field," Mastro said. "It shouldn't be a surprise he's moving to slot. He brings a dynamic aspect to our wide receiver core."
Mastro added that Galvin is still expected to take plenty of handoffs this season from the backfield, and that his role will not be strictly limit to the slot.
Although Galvin and Caldwell have received the majority of the limelight, Mastro believes the key to this team's success in 2012 will come primarily through the running backs group.
"This unit should without a doubt lead the team in all purpose yards," Mastro said. "These guys are key. They need to be blocking, catching, running, blocking, making plays, and then blocking a little more. We need to continue to get better out there."
TASKED WITH STOPPING the electric running backs, the defense had a good day across the board on Day 6. Sophomore cornerback and recent standout Tracy Clark ran with the 1's all day.
Senior cornerback Daniel Simmons could be found riding the stationary bike for the entirety of the afternoon. Again, Leach does not discuss injuries with the media.
Junior cornerback Nolan Washington returned to pads on a limited basis. Washington did not participate in most drills, but did get some work in throughout the day.
Freshman cornerbacks Alex Jackson and Ray Ford were both in uniform for today's practice. Ford sported the No. 39 jersey and helmet -- he will not be allowed to participate in full pads until Saturday's practice.
But Cougar fans should be very excited for this tandem -- Ford and Jackson were making some sensational plays in individual drills all afternoon.
AS THE AFTERNOON moved forward, the entire team moved from Rogers Field down to Martin Stadium for the first live 11 on 11 work of the fall.
Halfway through the scrimmaging, sophomore linebacker Chester Sua was removed from the first team and replaced with junior Justin Sagote.
Based on the fact outside linebackers coach Paul Valero and linebackers coach Jeff Choate could have been heard in Moscow, we'll go out on a limb here and say they weren't pleased with something Sua was or wasn't doing.
Sagote came in and made several plays in pursuit, looking especially good in identifying screen passes.
On the offensive side of the ball, wideout Isiah Myers looks to be separating himself a bit from the competition as a starting outside receiver.
The sophomore pass catcher shared time opposite Marquess Wilson on the outside for the most of the day, only surrendering time to freshman talent Gabriel Marks.
--Junior guard Niu Sale observed practice in his practice jersey with no pads present. Sale injured his leg yesterday during practice and did not return.
--Sophomore wideout Kristoff Williams did not participate in practice, instead working with a strength and conditioning coach on the sidelines during the beginning of practice.
--As noted previously, senior Simmons did not participate today and road a stationary bike for most of the afternoon.
--Freshman defensive lineman Destiny Vaeao missed practice and worked with strength coaches on the sidelines during individual drills.
--Freshman defensive lineman Austin Brown again missed practice, but worked with Vaeao and the strength coaches during individual drills.
--Freshman linebacker Tana Pritchard remained out. He suited up the first day of camp but hasn't since.
--Senior walk on linebacker Corey Laufasa also missed practice for the sixth straight day, but was out of the walking booted he had been sporting thus far in camp.
--Freshman wideout Dominique Williams left today's scrimmage with an apparent left hand injury and did not return.
--Rico Forbes was not at practice today. He has not practiced since suffering a calf injury Saturday.
A little "Coerperal" Punishment
Senior defensive end Adam Coerper spent most of his afternoon at the beach, but not the beach you'd want to be at.
Coerper spent almost 45 exhausting minutes doing army-like crawling drills in the sand pit alone while the rest of the team did position drills. As if that wasn't enough, Coerper was required to run up and down the stairs in Martin while the rest of the team scrimmaged for almost an hour. It is unclear as to why Coerper was relegated to these activities, Leach doesn't comment on injuries or discipline issues. In his book, Swing Your Sword, Leach talked about sending Texas Tech players to the sand pit for not giving enough effort, rehab, being late to meetings and for a variety of other reasons.
Special teams was quiet. Mike Bowlin , the starting punter and kickoff man, and backup placekicker, got some time kicking field goals today.
The junior had a tough day against the uprights, connecting on three of seven attempts.
Freshman Alex Jackson and Rahmel Dockery joined the stable of players looking for time in the return game.
Today's scrimmage lasted only 20 minutes, so not too many statistics could be compiled. Here's how they performed:
QB Jeff Tuel – 2/7 for 20 yds. 0 TDs 0 INTs – 6 rushing yds.
QB Connor Halliday – 1/1 for 23 yds. 0 TDs 0 INTs
RB Leon Brooks – 1 carry for 6 yds. 1 TD.
RB Theron West – 1 carry for 1 yd. 1 Fumble. 1 catch for 16 yds.
WR Rickey Galvin – 1 carry for 6 yds.
WR Gabe Marks – 2 catches for 26 yds.
WR Andrei Lintz – 1 catch for 4 yds.
K Andrew Furney – 2/2 on field goal attempts, both inside of 40 yds. Also hit his only extra point attempt.