Saturday, August 11, 2007

There's a 6:30 in the morning now?

It's noon, and morning practice wrapped about an hour ago. I'm now sitting in Gampel Pavilion listening to the squeaking sneakers on the hardwood as Jim Calhoun runs a basketball camp for very tall, very good high schoolers. Some notes...
  • It was an early day for all. I was up by 6:30 a.m. and on the road an hour later to catch the beginning of the 8:30 practice. Amazing what kind of time you make on the state highways that early on a Saturday. With virtually no one else on the road, I went from Orange to the parking lot at the outdoor practice field in Storrs in exactly 1 hour flat. And that included a stop at the Dunkin' Donuts drive thru for a medium regular. However, I may have slightly exceeded the speed limit for brief stretches of I-91 and I-84.

  • Sports writers aren't usually up that early, and I'm no exception. At least I finished work early on Friday. Bleary-eyed Chuck Banning of the Day was in the office til' 1:45 a.m. putting the Saturday sports section to bed. He earned the media Hard Hat of the day.

  • Something I haven't seen in a while: five quarterbacks running drills. Zach Frazer and Cody Endres joined the mix, and both are pretty big dudes. Frazer looks like he's no stranger to the weight room, and throws a decent ball. I think he'll be alright here at UConn.

  • On the injury front, Martin Bedard, Yianni Apostolakos (he needs a nickname...maybe Yianni the Greek? ... Someone get to work on this.) and Ellis Gaulden all worked on the sidelines during practice. Bedard was in a walking boot. Donald Brown dressed and had his leg wrapped knee to ankle, but didn't practice after what Edsall described as a minor leg injury. Dan Davis will be working only once during two-a-days, and got the morning off. Robert Vaughn was home after the death of an uncle, but was planning to return for the afternoon session.

  • Behemoth Dan Ryan has moved past behemoth Mike Hicks at right tackle. Nothing Hicks has done wrong, says Edsall. Ryan has been very good thus far. But it ain't over yet.

  • The kickers went through an odd series of stretches and exercises that included tethering themselves to each other on a bungi cord while one remained stationary and the other ran up field. They then paired off, one hopping on another's shoulders, and ran at each other in a chicken fight. OK, the last part never happened.

  • Not a good day for the defense, which Edsall chewed out for dogging it much of the morning. Specifically, both Scott Lutrus and Danny Lansanah caught Edsall's wrath. Edsall told Lutrus to shape up or he won't be starting. Lansanah got it for having his eyes in the wrong place during a drill. "Quit going through the motions!" Edsall bellowed at the defense. "We're giving up too many big plays. That's why we get beat, we give up too many big plays." Greg Robinson is apparently pushing hard to unseat Lutrus at strong side linebacker. More on this in Sunday's Register.

  • True freshman Robbie Frey looks very good, but is a thin 187 pounds. Andre Dixon also looked outstanding. I thought the same thing last camp, too. If there's an injury at tailback, the Huskies have plenty of talent to fill in.

  • When he leans forward on his knee brace, Dennis Brown looks like he's has a prosthetic leg from the knee down. His lower leg juts out at an incredibly odd angle. Guess that's where the bow-legged Brown got the nickname "parenthesis".

  • I doubt the quarterback battle will be be decided any time soon. They are pretty even right now, though Tyler Lorenzen had a decent day. Expect Edsall to wait until the week before the Duke game to make his announcement.

  • We know Jeffers, Kanuch, Taylor and Hernandez will be on the field a lot at wide receiver. Edsall wants his rotation at six, and mentioned Kevin Poles, Rob Theoudele, Kashif Moore, walk-on Mike Conroy and Isiah Moore as those in the mix. That's rough news for Marcus Easley, Erik Muschette and Alex Molina.

  • How young is the linebacking crew? John Silver of the J.I. had to give Danny Lansanah a cheat sheet when he asked who else was looking strong at the position. (Danny picked Greg Lloyd and C.J. Marck off the roster sheet. He is also impressed with Greg Robinson, whose name he remembered). Edsall also mentioned Lloyd and Marck and added Matt Ashmeade, Aaron Bryant, Doc Goudreau, Corey Stringer and Lawrence Wilson as those in the hunt for the backup jobs. That about covered all the bases at linebacker. No, wait. New Haven's own Alex Folson missed the roll call.

Enjoy the evening practice.


Blogger ian said...

Yianni the Greek sounds good.

August 12, 2007 12:26 PM 

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