Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Bye week speak

Had a chance to speak with a few of the guys this morning. Here's a little of what they had to say.
  • Donald Brown likes taking direct snaps out of the Wildcat formation, and he's lobbying the coaches to let him throw a pass or two. "A lot of people aren't buying it," Brown said. He mentioned is 1-for-1 in his career, the pass coming when he was a senior at Red Bank (N.J.) Catholic. "It was a halfback option, and it went for a 36-yard touchdown," Brown said. "But we ended up losing the game."

  • Brown said his style is similar to that of Tiki Barber. "I don't have any crazy moves, but it's enough to get the job done." All accounts are that Brown is the polar opposite of Tiki in the locker room, however. Tiki only cared about one person. Tiki. Now, he's a hard-hitting correspondent on the Today show. Saw him help prepare chicken on a segment last week.

  • D.J. Hernandez was fielding questions about his great game at North Carolina when Keith Gray, listening in behind him, interrupted. "You guys want to know the real story?" Gray said. "He bullied Zach into getting him the ball because Zach is younger than he is." Whatever works.

  • Zach Frazer came directly from his sign language class. Dan Ryan has the same class. Today, as part of their Happy Hands Club presentation, the two led the class in a sign language performance of Bette Midler's "The Rose." Seriously though, if the entire team and coaching staff learned sign language, wouldn't that be a huge help in calling audibles and line checks? Even if you were playing the Patriots, and Bill Belichick had filmed your walk through with a secret camera, then brought in a sign language interpreter to steal your signs, you could still mask things fairly easily.

  • Tyler Lorenzen's injury is a broken fifth metatarsal on his right foot, and he had a 3.5-inch screw inserted through his foot to aid in its healing. He said if he is ready on the early end of the 6-8 week recovery period, he could play against South Florida. Worst-case scenario is a possible bowl game. Right now, he said, there's no telling when a return could happen. He'll still have a role on the team. "I think I can bring some leadership," Lorenzen said. "I make sure the guys know they can do anything, and they should believe in themselves because I believe in them. We always say if we believe in each other, we can do anything."

  • Lots of good stuff from Frazer, some of which I'm saving for the paper. Here's what he said about seeing himself on film in a game situation for the first time since high school, "Some of the times are very similar, some (bad habits) like dropping my elbow, I saw that, too. But I learned a lot from what I saw. I looked at it from the coaches' perspective; they gave me positive criticism."


Anonymous Kevin said...

Re: sign language

That would work for every team, except for Gallaudet, the D-III football-playing school for the deaf in Washington, D.C.

October 08, 2008 2:59 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

WOW, this is really interesting to see that Frazer and Ryan are taking ASL class because myself as a deaf person, I don't see a lot of motivation these days to learn sign language. I'm happy to see that these guys are taking best of the opportunity to learn how to communicate with deaf people via sign language.

By the way, there is already sign language used in both college and professional football - they are considered of a series of certain gestures and hand signals. Signs, gestures, and body movements also play a role in ASL.

As for the Gallaudet Bison team, they play a different football because in football, you have a quarterback that says hut to start the play but while you have a deaf football team, it is difficult for them to hear the play get started so they play to the bang of the drum. I don't really know much about how the system work but you can check this link out.

A interesting fact about Gallaudet University's invention (from Wiki):

The modern-day circular huddle, in which the players all face inward in a tight circle, was invented by Gallaudet University quarterback Paul Hubbard in 1894. When quarterbacking, Hubbard realized that his hand signals could be read by opposing players, a particular concern when Gallaudet played other schools for the deaf. To remedy this, he had his players form a circle so that his sign-language signals could be sent and received without anyone on the sidelines or on the opposing team seeing.

Former University of Illinois Coach Bob Zupke is also credited with the invention of this formation.

This type of huddle is still in common use today, typically between plays in American Football as the quarterback assigns the next play to the offense.

October 09, 2008 12:31 AM 
Blogger Chip Malafronte said...

Very interesting stuff Rich!

Zach was saying that since he understands some sign language, he's discovered that many of UConn's offensive signals are actual ASL aigns, but have different meanings when the Huskies use them. He says he catches himself thinking "that sign really means 'x' and that really means 'y'"

October 09, 2008 8:38 AM 
Anonymous Vinny from East Haven said...

Not to sound too cynical here, but any chance they are taking sign language simply because it meets the UConn foreign language requirement?
Truly, this time I don't mean any disrespect. I'm just curious.

October 09, 2008 8:39 AM 
Anonymous Vinny from East Haven said...

Oh another interesting Gallaudet fact - didn't their tight end catch the game winning pass for Washington against Dallas in The Replacements?

October 09, 2008 8:41 AM 
Blogger Chip Malafronte said...

Vinny, I believe you may be right.

October 09, 2008 8:43 AM 
Anonymous Vinny from East Haven said...

Of course I'm right! Look who's on top of the Challenge standings!

October 09, 2008 2:27 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...


Game 1: Syracuse
Game 2: Texas
Game 3: Michigan State
Game 4: Vanderbilt
Game 6: Cinn
Game 7: Wisc
Game 8: LSU
Game 9: Ball State
Game 10: OK State
Game 11: Central Connecticut State

October 10, 2008 7:00 PM 

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