Wisconsin coach Barry Alvarez and other collegiate coaches have not been shy in voicing their displeasure at the NCAA-mandated practice rule changes that forbid teams from holding freshmen-only workouts prior to the start of fall camp. It is impossible to know to what degree the freshmen's first fall camp practice would have been different if they had had the three-day warm up freshmen had been allotted. For the most part, however, it appears Wisconsin's crop of freshmen had minimal problems adjusting to their first practice. Certainly, miscues were more prevalent among the frosh than their veteran counterparts, but the few jitters did not approach anything near alarming levels. It will be far easier to assess the freshmen after a few practices, particularly early next week when the team goes in full pads and begins live contact. For now, here are a few highlights and notes regarding the newest Badgers:
- Wide receiver Ernest Mason displayed flat out speed, earning the day's largest awe-inspired cheer from the players on the field when he beat starting cornerback Scott Starks by two or three steps and caught a fly pattern in stride, deep down field.
- Despite checking in at 215 pounds, 6-5 receiver Brandon Tobias did not appear lanky in the least. He juggled a few pass receptions and suffered at least one drop, but he also proved very nimble in drills, running fluidly for a player his size and, for the most part, flashing good hands.
- One unit for scrimmage sessions Wednesday displayed an all-incoming freshmen line, establishing initial positions at what is a very early juncture. Joe Thomas lined up at left tackle, with Andrew Weininger at right tackle. The guards were Danny Kaye at left and Marcus Coleman on the right. Luke Knauf played center.
- Freshmen are currently not listed on the team's depth chart. How the freshmen are meshing into Wisconsin's depth chart will be an ongoing story throughout fall camp.