First up, as usual was the kicking game, where it has become apparent that Brad Cooper and Todd James have locked up the kicking spots. Cooper was again flawless on his kicks drilling the ball high and far on both field goals and kickoffs, while James was excellent on both regula punts and tight punt from inside his onw ten yard line. James' hang time was excellent with one kick stying up 5.2 seconds and others well over the desired 4.3 second mark. The first team punt return squad also blocked a punt, which Brian King recovered for a touchdown.
King and Adam Jones were the first two kick returners, and Jones filled in for the injured Lance Frazier on the first team punt return unit. Jason Colson, Bryan Wright, Cassel Smith and Kay Jay Harris also got chances in the return game, with Smith and Harris breaking off lengthy backside returns.
The scrimmage began with the second team offense against the first team defense from the thirty yard line, and alternated units after that. The third team units also got some work, and as the scrimmage progressed several first and second teamers swapped positions to give them experience with different players. After running series form the fifty, more series were run from inside the offense's ten yard line, from midfield, and from the red zone. Practice concluded with several two minute drill sessions.
On offense Rasheed Marshall was again sharp, showing increased accuracy on his short and medium range passes. Rasheed also showed improved speed running the ball, as he tucked the ball away several times for nice gains. Marshall and Charles Hales were not tackled, but only touched, which limited their ground totals
Quincy Wilson had a light day of work in the backfield, but Erick Phillips demonstrated the team's depth with another excellent day. Phillips plowed over linebacker Scott Gyorko early in the scrimmage to set the tone for the offense.
The wide receiver corps had possibly its best day of the spring. Chris Henry had a pair of leaping grabs and a TD, while John Pennington found holes in the defense to grab several more passes. Aaron Neal and Miquelle Henderson also displayed their ability with not only good catches, but also solid runs after the catch. Tory Johnson and Cassel Smith each had 50-plus yard receptions on plays that started inside their own five yard lines.
On defense spur Leandre Washington stood out. Over a span of just a few mintues, he racked up consecutive tackles for losses and recorded an interception. Adam Jones and Akeem Jackson also snared passes for the defense, while Kevin McLee recorded a safety with an end zone tackle on a "coming out" play.
The defense's performace was even more impressive considering that Frazier, Jahmile Addae, Grant Wiley, Adam Lehnortt and Fred Blueford were held out due to injury. Alex Lake, Thandi Smith, Anthony Mims and Crhis Henry were among the players filling in on the first team that put in solid performances.
The hit of the day came early in special teams work, when one man wrecking crew Jules Montinar crushed Adam Jones on a punt return.
The team will get Sunday off, then resume one a day practices on Monday with the opening of school. WVU will have one less practice than the maximum allowed by the NCAA in preseason.