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Spring practice (3/8/19) practice notes

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Spring practice (3/8/19) practice notes

Postby PonyPride » Fri Mar 08, 2019 11:12 pm

Some observations from Friday's practice:

• As was expected, Will Brown took first-team reps at quarterback after Ben Hicks transferred to Arkansas. Brown looks visibly bigger and stronger, which is not unexpected. In the drills I watched, he didn't throw a lot of deep balls, but accuracy on short and medium passes was pretty good.
• Former DLs Patrick Jones and Ken McLaurin both have been moved to the offensive line. Both worked out at guard.
• Speaking of position changes, former OLB Trevor Denbow is now playing safety, in part because of the departures of Mikial Onu (transfer portal) and Elijah McQueen (injury) ... and in part because, as head coach Sonny Dykes said, Denbow ran a 4.5 (in the 40-yard dash) at 220 pounds.
• With a new offensive line coach in A.J. Ricker, it's far too early to begin speculating on starting roles on the new-look line. That said, in the team (11 on 11) drills, the starting offensive line looked fairly predictable: LT Beau Morris, LG Alan Ali, C Hayden Howerton, RG Nick Dennis, RT Jaylon Thomas.
• Two nice interceptions: CB Justin Guy-Robinson played pretty far off the line of scrimmage and then broke forward, jumping in front of WR Myron Gailliard on a sideline route. A little later, LB Delano Robinson floated in the middle in a crouch before shooting straight up in the air to snag a high pass by backup QB Derek Green.
• When lined up in a three-man defensive front, it was no surprise that Delontae Scott lined up at LDE and Demerick Gary lined up inside. Running with the first team at RDE: Turner Coxe.
• Two new DTs on the roster as walk-ons: Jacob Pugh (formerly of the University of Tulsa, where he was listed at 6-0, 291 ... and also from Greenhill School in Dallas) and Will Jones, who was listed at 6-2, 282 last year at Tyler JC, where he played two years. Pugh was a redshirt sophomore last year at Tulsa.
• Among those sitting out: CB Eric Sutton, who Dykes said won't do much this spring, TE Ryan Becker, who Dykes said will return soon (and wore a brace on his knee while walking around at practice) and CB Kevin Johnson, who Dykes said won't practice at all this spring after breaking his leg in the 2018 season finale at Tulsa.

Video interviews to come.
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Re: Spring practice (3/8/19) practice notes

Postby DanFreibergerForHeisman » Sat Mar 09, 2019 10:04 am

Thanks for the update!

It will definitely be interesting to see the development and positioning of the OL this spring.
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Re: Spring practice (3/8/19) practice notes

Postby footballdad » Sat Mar 09, 2019 6:50 pm

Giant whiffs at DT with Jones & McLaurin.
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Re: Spring practice (3/8/19) practice notes

Postby Casey » Sun Mar 10, 2019 1:41 am

It's hardly uncommon for linemen to take a couple of years to grow into their frames ... and McLaurin played more toward the end of last year. It's not like they're playing safety or something, where it can be expected that young players can make an impact right away. Kudos to them for not quitting and running from a challenge.
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Re: Spring practice (3/8/19) practice notes

Postby footballdad » Sun Mar 10, 2019 5:50 pm

Casey wrote:It's hardly uncommon for linemen to take a couple of years to grow into their frames ... and McLaurin played more toward the end of last year. It's not like they're playing safety or something, where it can be expected that young players can make an impact right away. Kudos to them for not quitting and running from a challenge.


:roll: They're both going into their 4th year........and just now being moved to OL, having not been able to break the rotation in a poor DL.

Both also give/take 10-15 lbs from their High School playing weights. These were NOT players that had to add 30-50 lbs to compete at this level.

If these kids today aren't contributing by their redshirt sophomore years, it's likely they never will, as they're already being recruited over.

How many All Conference DL from the fantastic Morris recruiting classes? I specifically recall Stallion touting McLaurin as someone who could contribute right away because of his size and talent. (or not)
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Re: Spring practice (3/8/19) practice notes

Postby Roach » Sun Mar 10, 2019 7:50 pm

Every coach out there, even Saban and Swinney and Meyer and Riley, is trying to recruit over current players.
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Re: Spring practice (3/8/19) practice notes

Postby ponyboy » Mon Mar 11, 2019 2:02 pm

Neat to read that Coxe was running with the first team. Kid was a beast in high school.

For you golfers, it’s cool and overcast here at Torrey Pines today.
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Re: Spring practice (3/8/19) practice notes

Postby JasonB » Mon Mar 11, 2019 3:18 pm

footballdad wrote:
Casey wrote:It's hardly uncommon for linemen to take a couple of years to grow into their frames ... and McLaurin played more toward the end of last year. It's not like they're playing safety or something, where it can be expected that young players can make an impact right away. Kudos to them for not quitting and running from a challenge.


:roll: They're both going into their 4th year........and just now being moved to OL, having not been able to break the rotation in a poor DL.

Both also give/take 10-15 lbs from their High School playing weights. These were NOT players that had to add 30-50 lbs to compete at this level.

If these kids today aren't contributing by their redshirt sophomore years, it's likely they never will, as they're already being recruited over.

How many All Conference DL from the fantastic Morris recruiting classes? I specifically recall Stallion touting McLaurin as someone who could contribute right away because of his size and talent. (or not)


Both of them look the part, but haven't contributed a ton. We knew going into spring that the OL was light and DT had a ton of numbers, so some players were going to switch. McLaurin actually got some time last year. The fact that he is being moved over to provide depth at guard gives me hope for some of the younger DTs on the roster. I think it is a good sign that he was selected.
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Re: Spring practice (3/8/19) practice notes

Postby PonyPlayer4 » Mon Mar 11, 2019 3:40 pm

ponyboy wrote:For you golfers, it’s cool and overcast here at Torrey Pines today.


Shore, is that you?
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Re: Spring practice (3/8/19) practice notes

Postby ponyboy » Mon Mar 11, 2019 7:06 pm

Name’s La Jolla.
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Re: Spring practice (3/8/19) practice notes

Postby BUS » Tue Mar 12, 2019 8:53 am

Can someone shine some light on the following...
DL - Pugh. Know he grandson of cowboy great. Size, weight, speed? Is he in the rotation?

Same with Will Jones. DE or DT. See another listing for DL as for Pugh.

Are we going to run a 4-3 and a 3-4 and sometimes a 5 -2???

Finally - Charlie Flores - Walk on or transfer.

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Re: Spring practice (3/8/19) practice notes

Postby JasonB » Tue Mar 12, 2019 9:21 am

Walk ons are walk ons. We are like 12 deep at DT. I'd be surprised if any see time.

One of the great things about Kane so far is that he will change defensive formations based on the matchup and personnel available. Don't forget the 4 safety look he rolled out a couple of times last year.

Our base formation will continue to be 4 down linemen, two pure LBs and then one player who is that hybrid LB/Safety. I forget what these guys call that role, but Van Malone called it the Star position.

That said, they tend to play a smaller athlete at one of the DE positions. That player may stand and play loose from the rest of the line, so it very quickly morphs into a 3-4 type of look similar to when the Cowboys played a 3-4 under Phillips and Ware was one of the "LBs" in the 3-4.

Because the "star" player is a hybrid, they will shift over near the slot receiver, and the other two LBs will be more central. In this type of system, you can see where the 4-3 becomes a 4-2-5 or a 3-4 very quickly without changing personnel. In order to make it work, you have to have a big strong DE on one side (the Coxe position), some playmakers on the other (Scott/Wiley), you need that hybrid Star spot (Denbow/Nelson), and you need everyone to run to the ball. The latter two things are the biggest improvements last year over the previous defenses.
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Re: Spring practice (3/8/19) practice notes

Postby BUS » Tue Mar 12, 2019 3:14 pm

I guess that is where the DE, DT and DL come from as each alignment may have slightly different position names.

Oh, our D is better and looking for even more this coming year.

Thanks for explanation.
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Re: Spring practice (3/8/19) practice notes

Postby Digetydog » Tue Mar 12, 2019 9:13 pm

JasonB wrote:Walk ons are walk ons. We are like 12 deep at DT. I'd be surprised if any see time.

One of the great things about Kane so far is that he will change defensive formations based on the matchup and personnel available. Don't forget the 4 safety look he rolled out a couple of times last year.

Our base formation will continue to be 4 down linemen, two pure LBs and then one player who is that hybrid LB/Safety. I forget what these guys call that role, but Van Malone called it the Star position.

That said, they tend to play a smaller athlete at one of the DE positions. That player may stand and play loose from the rest of the line, so it very quickly morphs into a 3-4 type of look similar to when the Cowboys played a 3-4 under Phillips and Ware was one of the "LBs" in the 3-4.

Because the "star" player is a hybrid, they will shift over near the slot receiver, and the other two LBs will be more central. In this type of system, you can see where the 4-3 becomes a 4-2-5 or a 3-4 very quickly without changing personnel. In order to make it work, you have to have a big strong DE on one side (the Coxe position), some playmakers on the other (Scott/Wiley), you need that hybrid Star spot (Denbow/Nelson), and you need everyone to run to the ball. The latter two things are the biggest improvements last year over the previous defenses.


I was really surprised to see Big Ken get moved to offense. When he played last year, he was nearly impossible to move off the ball. While not a 4 down guy, he was effective when used properly.
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Re: Spring practice (3/8/19) practice notes

Postby JasonB » Wed Mar 13, 2019 10:00 am

All they are looking for at DT are players who will be impossible to move and allow those linebackers to make plays.

Again, I think the fact he as moved is a really positive sign, because it means that they have other DTs who will do it more consistently than Ken...
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