19 August 2010
Some observations and thoughts from this morning's scrimmage at Faurot Field:
- I know many will be happy to hear this: On the scrimmage's first play Blaine Gabbert lined up under center and handed of to Derrick Washington. However, that was the only time a QB went under center.
- Blaine Gabbert went 16 of 21 for 208 yards and three touchdowns according to Dave Matter, but I still thought he stared down receivers at times. Granted, many times his first option was open.
- Extremely, extremely impressed with Derrick Washington. Definitely on the bandwagon with him. Every time he touched the ball I felt like he could break a big play. Not only was he running hard, but he made a few nice catches including a 20 yard touchdown.
- Grant Ressel struggled. Initially, when he missed a 50 yarder I dismissed it as a rare miss, but when he put one wide left from inside the 20 yard line, a lot of people in the crowd of about 30 took notice. After practice Gary Pinkel said that Ressel will learn a lot about himself as he works through his recent struggles.
- I was also impressed with Tyler Gabbert. Seems to have a bigger arm than most people think and also looked real agile in the pocket. Even when he went up against the number one defense on one series, he made good reads, avoided sacks, and threw the ball away when necessary.
- Terrell Resonno was the only defensive tackle that stood out to me in today's practice.
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- Ashton Glaser made the biggest play of the day late in the scrimmage. He took off from about the 20 yard line and made it to about midfield when three defenders converged on him. He was hit hard but somehow managed to stay on his feet and run all the way for a touchdown.
- The star of the first scrimmage, Michael Sam, told me yesterday he's a little banged up. Said he's battling back spasms. He isn't considered injured, and afterward said he felt, "good."
- Kenronte Walker and Kenji Jackson split time with the first team alongside Jasper Simmons.
- In special teams practice, Simmons took one of the first kickoffs up the middle untouched all the way for a touchdown. One media member told me that it's become common to see Simmons taking kicks back for TD's. Not sure if that's a credit to Simmons or if that's bad news for the special teams.
- Last season the tight end position was virtually invisible for Mizzou. I don't expect the same this year. All four of Missouri's tight ends were active in the scrimmage today, most notably Michael Egnew. Egnew made a nice TD catch, adjusting on a slightly underthrown Blaine Gabbert pass and jumping over Jeff Gettys for the catch.
- Egnew and Waters were both utilized in tight end screens that brought me back to the days of Martin Rucker.
- The freshmen wideouts didn't disappoint. Jimmie Hunt didn't play, but Marcus Lucas and Bud Sasser were both solid. Lucas dropped the first pass thrown his way, but rebounded catching everything else thrown his way. Sasser caught everything. He's real good at catching the ball with his hands and not letting it come into his pads.
- L'Damian Washington made the day's nicest catch. James Franklin threw a nice 20-yard fade to the back of the endzone. It didn't look like Washington would get to it, but he did, dragging his feet and controlling the pass with Kip Edwards draped all over him.
- Speaking of receivers, Jerrell Jackson's injury doesn't seem to be hurting his enthusiasm. He was running up and down the sidelines all morning shouting encouragement and interacting with his teammates. When Egnew hauled in his TD catch, Jackson proudly yelled, "That's my roommate!"
- The entire offense avoided turning the ball over until the scrimmage's final play. Zaviar Gooden stepped in front of a Jimmy Costello pass for the interception to end the game.
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