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Spring Practice Notes

Discussion in 'CU Buffs Newsroom' started by RSSBot, Mar 10, 2012.

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    Jul 8, 2005
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    By Stuart

    [h=3]Spring Practice Notes[/h] March 10th
    Spring Practice Priorities
    In a Daily Camera article, five priorites for Colorado’s spring practices have been laid out.
    Here is what is being said by Buff head coach Jon Embree … and what he really means.
    1. Who will be the starting quarterback?
    With*Nick Hirschman out with another*foot surgery,*Texas transfer Connor Wood is the frontrunner as a third-year sophomore. Redshirt freshmen John Schrock and Stevie Joe Dorman will get a lot of valuable reps thanks to Hirschman’s injury this spring, with true freshman Shane Dillon joining the fray along with Hirschman come August.
    What Jon Embree is saying: “I don’t have any preconceived notions at that position. I know none of the coaches do either, which is the beauty of it being in this situation. I’m excited to see them compete. Nick is very competitive and this is important to him; he’s been in the system for a while. They (Hirschman and Wood) are both pretty similar in where they’re starting from.”
    What Jon Embree really means: “I hope that Connor Wood is so good that the players all come out of practice saying that Wood is their starting quarterback. We can’t afford to have this be a three or four man competition in August.”
    2. Who are the best five offensive linemen?
    While Colorado has three returning starters along the offensive line, there is very little which is certain as spring practice opens. The only sure thing seems to be junior David Bakhtiari, but whether he plays his left tackle spot or moves inside to guard remains to be seen. Sophomore Alex Lewis could be good enough to push Bakhtiari inside. Gus Handler had a firm grip on the starting center job in the second half of last season. He should keep it, but you never know. Jack Harris returns from injury at right tackle. Ryan Dannewitz could be limited by back problems.
    What Jon Embree is saying: Coach Jon Embree said he wants to get the best five in the group on the field together.
    What Jon Embree really means: I lost my starting quarterback, my starting running back, and all but one of my best wide receivers. The offensive line has to get its act together now, so we have a starting lineup in place for August. If we are still shuffling linemen around in fall camp, CU may have to hold opponents to single digits in order*to win games this fall.
    3. Who will be the No. 2 and No. 3 wide receivers?*
    These 15 spring practices are big for players such as Tyler McCulloch, Keenan Canty, both of whom played last year, and Nelson Spruce and Jarrod Darden. Three strong freshmen will join the program this summer and challenge for playing time right away. Also to consider, can DaVaughn Thornton thrive here after moving from tight end last fall?
    What Jon Embree is saying: In a meeting a week ago with beat writers, Embree said he “has no idea” who will line up opposite junior Paul Richardson next fall.
    What Jon Embree really means: Embree has no idea who will line up opposite junior Paul Richardson next fall.* No coachspeak will change the dire situation the Buffs face. Connor Wood could be a great quarterback, but if he has no receivers to throw to …
    4. Can Nick Kasa take control of the tight end position?
    Kasa didn’t play much on the defensive line in the first three years of his career and he dealt with some injuries that hampered him as well. He decided last fall to make the switch to tight end where there is little depth returning this year. Kasa played against Utah and caught a pass.*How good can he be having never played the position, and will he be able to hold off three freshmen in the fall?
    What Jon Embree is saying: Coaches have liked what they have seen from*Kasa in winter workouts.
    What Jon Embree really means: Nick Kasa is one of the highest rated recruits for Colorado in years. Yet, in a defensive line so thin that the Buffs will not be able to conduct a Spring Game, Kasa was not able to have an impact. Here’s hoping that Kasa’s senior year will remind everyone how great an athlete he was considered to be three years ago.
    5. What, if anything, will we know about the defensive line by mid-April?
    This just in: There isn’t much depth on the defensive line. Nate Bonsu is out again with an injury and Cordary Allen has moved from tight end to defensive end. The remaining*veterans*won’t be exposed to too much contact work in order to minimize the chance of injury. If you’re a defensive lineman on the roster this spring and you haven’t played much in the past, it’s time to make your move before that big class of reinforcements arrives this summer.
    What Jon Embree is saying: Embree said he would be paying close attention to the personal development of Will Pericak, Chidera Uzo-Diribe and Juda Parker this spring.
    What Jon Embree really means: Colorado has zero chance at a winning record if true freshmen, arriving in August, are forced to start in early September. Embree won’t be watching Pericak, Uzo-Diribe, and Parker this spring … perhaps because he is afraid that if he watches them, they might get injured. There is no other unit as fragile as the Colorado defensive line.

    Originally posted by CU At the Game
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