Photobucket's giving me trouble at the moment but if I figure it out I'll post a couple of pics. This wouldn't be a problem if Sailor Ripley had dispatched the photographer I asked for. I hate being the new guy.
A BCS Bowl win, a returning Heisman finalist and an absolutely gorgeous Austin day combined to make this the best attended Spring Game I've been to. I arrived an hour before the start and an unbroken-in pair of flip flops dictated that I pay seven bucks to park as close as the garage behind Schultz's. Concession lines and general eyeballing seemed to confirm the heavy turnout. Bill Little estimates attendance at right around the population of Bombay.
I entered through the Southwest corner and started a slow circle around the stadium. I'm halted by Longhorn Band's entrance and I can't help but note what a spectacle this has become. Five or six years ago this 'event' pretty much consisted of having a janitor unlock the gates that morning. Heck, I used to bring my dog in. It's not quite a game day atmosphere now but it's getting closer, what with the bathroom lines and constant advertising bombardment.
After a nice opening ceremony honoring General Hammond and his wife we finally get to the opening coin toss. Wait, what? Shockingly we win the toss. I'm almost positive we defer.
As for the scrimmage itself I only had the single live viewing so I'll just give some general impressions:
A mixed bag for Alex Okafor. He blew past his blocker on the second play from scrimmage and turned Vondrell back inside for little gain. He also had some nice pressure on the quarterbacks from time to time but the news wasn't all good. On Kirkendall's reverse Alex stops running the moment James gets past him and his effort on chasing plays was marginal all day. He'll play a ton and play well this year but the leaders on this defense need to get in his face.
Encouraging but not surprising play from our defense overall. Kheeston Randall is indeed not ready although I think there's potential there. Ben Alexander is what he is. Obviously everyone saw Thomas's pick six but he was fantastic in coverage all day. Emmanual Acho impressed as well. Kindle didn't play a snap on defense for reasons I won't speculate on.
On offense we started the scrimmage with about nine straight runs which indicates to me that Brown truly believes our head can knock down this wall one of these days. Whatever. Colt threw the ball well considering the wind conditions and save for one play where Jeremy Hills let Dravanti Johnson come free, our pass protection was generally good.
All told not many surprises yesterday and not as much exposition of the younger guys as I might've liked to have seen.