When the football team gathered around Coach Joker Phillips at the conclusion of their first day at Fall Camp in full pads, they were not expecting anything special. That changed once ice cream music began blaring over the speakers and the arrival of an ice cream truck. Needless to say they liked the surprise, with Senior Matt Smith saying, “If they put an ice cream truck at the end of a 40 yard dash, I’d run it in 2 seconds.” Joker chuckled a little after hearing this, and replied saying, “if that’s the case, we need to play with one sitting right across the goal line.”
As far as the actual practicing part goes, Joker is very pleased with the way the Running Backs have performed. The 3 backs with experience, (CoShik Williams, Raymond Sanders, and Jonathan George) have been alternating with the first team, allowing the two Freshman to get as many reps as possible with the second team. CoShik has been the first to get snaps, but what has pleased Joker the most with the top 3, is their hunger to get on the football field.
“Those guys have taken a lot of ownership on special teams, they’re going to Coach Nord and saying ‘Hey we want to be on this team we want to be on that team, make sure that we’re all on the field’. You very seldom see starting backs with that type of attitude that will rub off on the young guys and that’s the type of attitude we need at every position.”
Joker did not mention Josh Clemons in the Running Back talk because he has not gotten nearly as many reps, while he practices only every other day. However it should not affect his playing time any just yet, because presently there is no clear cut favorite.
Coach Rick Minter was pleased with the physicality during the first practice, even though the high heat did take some time for players to adjust. He was most pleased with the way his linebackers played. Even though they are new young guys, they are playing like leaders and making a lot of pads pop.
After it was announced that Marcus Caffey would be ineligible this season, Safety Martavius Neloms was forced to move to Cornerback, where Coach Minter believes he has done well.
“I think he’s done well to be honest with you, he’s a good football player that can easily adjust to where ever we need him to play, and we needed him at corner and we’re quite happy with him.”
Coach Minter always gives great quotes. Today was no exception.“The 3’s (3rd string) are all green, and still eating Gerber.”
I’ll be at practice all week, looking like I’ve been practicing with a nice gash on my forehead @RoushKSR