Final Week of Spring Practice Begins

It was more of the same as the WVU football team entered its final week of spring practice, with the offense continuing to sputter against a deeper, healthier and more experienced defense.

With a laundry list of offensive contributors sidelined, however, its provided the opportunity of players on both sides of the ball to show their abilities. One of those was Vaughn Rivers, who continued to adjust to his new role at wide receiver, a position he switched to late last week.

"I think that move may work out really well," Head coach Rich Rodriguez said. "He's still learning, but I really like some of the things he can do. Judged on just what I've seen in the last couple days he's going to play a lot for us on offense."

Rivers is filling a need at slot receiver after playing in WVU's defensive secondary last year.

On defense, linebacker Marc Magro delivered several big hits while splitting time with the first and second team defense. Most of the hits came at the expense of Arlen Dorsey, who had struggled early but broke off a long run near the end of practice.

Additionally, walk-on defensive back David Igono made a pair of interceptions, adding to one he made in Saturday's intrasquad scrimmage. Igoni, who can play both cornerback and safety, made a beautiful one-handed snag on the second pick, and ran it back for a touchdown.

Despite the defensive dominance, Rodriguez is still reluctant to deliver harsh criticism to his offense, or heap too much praise to his defense, considering the circumstances.

"It's kind of hard to judge," Rodriguez said. "We've got six or seven guys out that would be playing.

"Offensively, we're still searching to get a bit of a rhythm. I don't know if we'll get it in the spring."

Some of the offensive woes can be attributed to injuries along the offensive front, a situation that worsened on Monday. Redshirt freshman center Mike Dent had to be carted off the field after sustaining an injury midway through practice. His condition was not immediately known. He joines Dan Mozes, Jeremy Sheffey and Travis Garrett as linemen who have missed all or part of spring practice.

Rodriguez said the injuries up front put more pressure on his inexperienced signal-callers.

"It's hard to teach them when they're scrambling around," Rodriguez said.

The quarterbacks, however, are getting more thrown at them in terms of the playbook and coverages from the defense.

"They've got to get it thrown at them because you can only spoon feed them just a little bit," Rodriguez said. "Eventually you've got to throw some live bullets at them and throw it fast and hope they learn from it."


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