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Fantastic intel on the football team heading into Spring drills
Written by OpenToClose   
Monday, 22 March 2010 21:54

Ted Miller on the Pac-10 blog had a phenomenal amount of new information regarding the Cougs as the team starts Spring drills on Thursday. You can find his blog post here External link and you should bookmark it as he usually drops some pretty good stuff in there. Plus, it never hurts to have some Cougs dropping him comments and questions.

Here are a few of the highlights that really caught my attention.


1) Interesting linebacker position changes.

It appears that Wulff is going to put Louis Bland at middle linebacker this year when he's healthy and move Alex Hoffman-Ellis outside. An interesting decision given that Bland is much smaller. It would appear that the depth chart heading into the Spring would go something like Myron Beck at strongside backer, Louis Bland at middle and Alex Hoffman-Ellis at weakside. The second team would be Ledgerwood/Markle battling it out in the middle, Arthur Burns at weakside and Andre Barrington at strongside. Also in play are C.J. Mizell once he gets to campus this Fall and Sekope Kaufusi who is going to play a hybrid linebacker/dend position.

I'm not in love with Beck starting on the strong side but I would imagine that Kaufusi would be subbing him out quite a bit in passing situations. Seems reasonable to put Bland in the middle and let Ledgerwood and Markle get all the reps this Spring. I'm really excited to see what Hoffman-Ellis might do with his speed now that he can play in space. He could be an absolute terror to block on blitzes and it's going to be tough to get the corner on his side if you are a running back. Just imagine bringing Kaufusi and Hoffman-Ellis on the blitz with Long and Rankin coming at the ends. I can just see the party at the quarterback right now.


2) We are absolutely stacked at safety.

It appears that Anthony Carpenter is going to stick at safety and they've also got Tyree Toomer officially classified as a safety as well. Unless Miller misunderstood where Wulff was putting people it is obvious that we are going to have some serious competition at safety. He's got the three redshirts Locker, Atofau, and Carpenter along with holdovers Chima, Daniels, Matthews, and Toomer. That's seven guys for two spots. It's going to be a crazy Spring. The only one that leaves me scratching my head is Carpenter. This makes us a touch thin at corner and he seemed to have the body and skill to play on the island.

Speaking of corner, the four Wulff cited were Simmons, Hayward, Justin and Nolan Washington. Can't wait to see what Washington can do and those four alone are worth feeling really good about.


3) Forzani is toast.

Wulff has him gone for sure. That leaves us razor thin at receiver. Our top four all had 20+ catches last season which is cool. The only problem is that there isn't a gamebreaker among them (yet) and if we sustain an injury it's going to get scary. As it is, we are already talking about somewhat counting on a JC transfer and true freshmen coming in to contribute immediately. Not exactly where you want to be heading into the Spring. Let's hope the big four develop quickly and stay healthy.


4) Rankin will move around.

Looks like Rankin will play end and tackle. Should be interesting to see where he plays in certain situations. Guy could be a pass rushing dtackle and then run stuffing dend depending on down and distance. In actuality, this is probably more of a hedge against what we might see at defensive tackle over the Spring.


All in all, a fantastic article to get you thinking and excited about Spring ball. I've only hit some of the highlights so make sure you go check out the article. Again, it's posted here. External link

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Comments (1)
1 Friday, 26 March 2010 08:27
With the lack of WR's and limited QB potential my fear is that we will once again have to rely on the RB's to produce. Early word is that the O-line will be our strength which is good....but if we have no air attack defenses will stack the box and we will be hurting for offense....again. Not much can be done unfortunately. Unless a QB really steps up AND some WR's it will be a running attack year. This may be for another post but Sturdy needs to show up this year and adjust the frickin' offense to his talent. Two years of "we just don't have the talent" excuses on why our offense is stagnant will not fly again. Is this spread-type offense a one-trick pony that works really well in 1AA? We all know there has to be progress this year but I want to see some creativity on offense.

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