Sorry for the belated practice report but I just got home from Milwaukee, which is Algonquin for "The Good Land." Algonquins must have been drunks in my opinion (no racist), because everyone in that goddamn city drinks like a fish. But I regress, and so does my liver. On to Texas Football via The Asset.
Tuesday's practice started sluggish on the offensive side of the ball, especially at the running back position. Jeremy Hills got the bulk of the work followed by Malcolm Brown and Joe Bergeron. Hills had a pedestrian performance as the starter. If the play is blocked for five he’ll get you five, if it’s blocked for 30 he’ll get you 10. The freshmen difference makers, unfortunately, still appeared to be hobbled by their injuries, but more on that later.
At QB, David Ash worked on checking the ball down and looking more to the middle of the field. Harsin was very vocal with the true frosh on Tuesday. The theme was making a positive on every play and staying on schedule. That should translate into more receptions from backs and TE’s this weekend as they worked this aspect of the passing game in team work. Overall, Ash had a solid day as did Case McCoy. It’s important to note that McCoy spent a large part of Tuesday’s practice working on his mechanics.
At receiver, Darius White continues to be the most frustrating player on the entire roster. He’ll make a beastly catch in traffic on one play and follow that up with a drop or the wrong route on the next snap. The Asset tells us he’s getting more attention from Coach Wyatt which has to be a good sign for the young man, but he needs to start taking advantage of these opportunities.
On defense, there wasn’t much news at all. Taylor Bible flashed some Tuesday but he’s still not bringing it every play. "He can be as good as he wants to," says the Asset.
In Wednesday’s workout, everything was status quo on the defensive side of the ball with the exception of Steve Edmond getting more snaps. Overall, the kids are excited about the physical challenge from KSU because "they’re sick of playing all these spread teams". They know they’re going to get a chance for some licks this game so they were pretty fired up and vocal this week, the Asset tells us. Coach Davis seems to be goading this emotion because he’s warning his charges as well as the rest of the front 7 that Collin Klein will try to truck you and if you get trucked by a QB we’re never going to let you hear the end of it. The Asset tells us that our defense is tired of hearing about Collin Klein and KSU’s "toughness" and they've said as much this week.
On offense, we’ve got different gadgets installed this week to take advantage of KSU’s aggressiveness. Jeremy Hills has been running the Wildcat but it’s not the staple it’s been in weeks past. He gives to Monroe a lot more than Fozzy did. Ash will be asked to pick up the slack in the running game so look for more designed runs by the QB this Saturday.
Malcolm Brown could be the starter on Saturday and he was cutting MUCH better on Wednesday and Thursday after being tentative on Tuesday. Bergeron could play as well if practice snap allocation is any indication. He still doesn’t have that burst, but he’s improving.
In fact, The Asset tells us that both of these kids could have played against Mizzou but they weren’t full strength and Mack didn’t want to risk further injury especially on that joke of a playing surface they have in Columbia. So if you’re handicapping play time for Saturday call it 95% on Brown and 50% on Bergeron based on how each looked this week, while keeping in mind we'll be playing on a field that's BCS college football caliber.
At Oline Searels seems to be challenging Cochran because he gave Allen more reps on Wednesday. Searels doesn’t want Cochran to hit that freshman wall so he’s really been "riding Cochran’s ass" according to The Asset.
At WR, we’re riding with Davis and Goodwin, and hoping White and Onyegbule can pick up the slack. White, as mentioned before, had his typical enigmatic week of practice, while Miles did some nice things in the middle of the field in our pseudo-spread. It’s important to note that Onyegbule can throw the ball pretty well for a wideout.
At QB, Ash, once again was pretty vocal in Wednesday’s practice and he’s starting to take on more of a leadership role. The players seem to have confidence in him and have responded well this week, but the vibe is that this is an important game for not only the team but for David Ash. The players can sense it, according to The Asset, and they’re trying to keep things positive with the true freshman quarterback.
As for redacted plays, there are two new wrinkles.
One note in recruiting. The Asset was in on a conversation with the staff about the five star wide receiver Dorial Green-Beckham and he claims they think they have the lead at this point in the game. This conversation happened in the last two or three days. I'm still skeptical, but there's a positive vibe from the staff on that front. For those that don't follow recruiting, DGB has the chance to have a Roy Williams type of impact as a freshman. He's as physically ready as Williams was at the same point in their careers.