Camping Tales

West Virginia opened its 2006 summer football camp season with a session that was short on agility and timed drills and long on personal instruction and one on one battles. Sunday's camp included just 40 minutes of the former, while focusing on "playing football" for much of the day.

While many combines and camps spend a lot of time on cone drills, 40-yard dash timings and the like, West Virginia's opening camp session minimized such drills. The approximately 80 campers on hand did run through several different cone drills, bag sessions, hoop runs and change of direction work, but those periods were completed quickly to get to the real meat of the day's work.

Campers went through individual drills, where players broke out by position to work on individual skills with their corresponding coaches. That work was followed by one-on-one drills, and then culminated in seven-on-seven passing sessions while the offensive and defensive linemen butted heads in man-to-man matchups.

Campers also had the chance to check out the Puskar Center, view a highlight tape and meet with position coaches between the first and second practice sessions of the day.


  • If there's a better looking player than WVU signee Terence Kerns, it would be difficult to imagine. The dual-sport star has the build of a college sophomore at 6-1 and 210 pounds, and when combined with his blazing speed presents a package that will confound high school defenses this year. While his college debut is still a year away, it's easy to picture Kerns making an impact at WVU.

  • Quarterback Charlie Russell displayed solid footwork during several different agility drills. While he's certainly not Rasheed Marshall or Patrick White in the running game, Russell kept his balance well and made good cuts during individual work. If you're looking for a comparison, think of the running ability of a Jeff Hostetler or Adam Bednarik.

  • The offensive and defensive line confrontations produced some of the highlights of the camp. Verbal commitment Donny Barclay and prospects Gino Gradkowski and Chad Snodgrass all had good sessions. Snodgrass was very physical, and did well against all opposition, including WVU commitment Junius Lewis.

  • Wide receivers Tim Cortazzo and Riley Dunlop displayed the best hands among the receivers in camp. Each adjusted to the ball well, and once they got used to the speed of the ball from the JUGS gun, consistently caught the ball while coming off different breaks.

  • Star wideout Maurice Williams of Strong Vincent High School competed in the first session, but sat out the second after tweaking a hamstring.

  • Madison-Trotwood's C.J. Peake was on campus, but did not participate in the camp.

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