I had the opportunity to attend the first scrimmage on Saturday during the coaching clinic and here are the random thoughts from the experience. First of the coaches were extremely approachable. Stewart stopped to make sure we had enjoyed the experience and learned something while apologizing for going too long on his discussion of special teams that morning. I watched as a coach came up to Jeff Mullens and started big timing him with stories of his coaching glory. Mullens listened patiently the entire time and then at the end gave the man his name which must have not been recognized. He got a little embarrassed when Mullens blew the whistle and took the offensive reigns as he was standing there. Made that big onsides kick call in '03 he was talking about sound a little less important. The offensive coaches were more soft spoken while the defensive coaches were definitely more in your face. However, all were placing a heavy emphasis on fundamentals. Especially Galloway with the wide receivers, Lockwood with the defensive backs, and Mullen with the quarterbacks. Probably all areas of need:
"Coach [Bill Stewart is] a good man. It's like coach Stew lets the position coach teach you up like you're supposed to. Coach Rod used to come teach us and wouldn't let coach [Tony] Gibson do his job. Coach Stew sits back and lets coach [David] Lockwood do his job."The young players that stood out were Brandon Hogan, Will Johnson and Bradley Starks. Hogan was playing on all three different offensive squads in the slot and made some plays both in space and down the field. After moving Thor Merrow from defensive line to the fullback/tightend earlier this spring it appears that Will Johnson may end up beating him out for the spot. Johnson and Evan Rodriguez have both been moved recently and Johnson was the more physical during the scrimmage and apparently has been making plays in all the practices. Word is that Charlie Russell has been injured. He better get well soon if he wants a shot at the third qb slot as Starks looks like PW running around out there and made some plays with his arm. Starks is also getting some reps at the receiver position.
With three linemen out for the spring and Devine playing only the first series the defense was slightly ahead of the offense in the scrimmage. The offense looked very similar to previous seasons. The passing game is flooding the zone quite often and while the checkdown was used primarily during the scrimmage there is a deep option and a middle option as well. The running backs are in need of reinforcements. Jock Sanders worked with the first group in the beginning. After him it was a committee in which no one stood out or made anyone miss. Hopefully part of that is good defense.
In basketball news recruit Kevin Jones was named a parade All-American. He is believed to be the fifth Parade All-American to sign with WVU since 1985 or the same total as the starting five for Duke.
And since the castle didn't work out for you BSR maybe you can get Rich's old house. A steal at $10,763/month.