Football: Assistant Coaches on Practice No. 3
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. - West Virginia University assistant football coaches discuss 2012 spring practice:
Inside Receiver coach Shannon Dawson
On the beginning of spring practice and the performance of the receivers
From the first day of practice I think its going fine, we dropped probably about ten balls and that's the first day we really had problems with drops - we're usually pretty sure-handed. Effort has been great and as far as playing fast at a high tempo, we've been doing good. If you have opportunities to make plays, we have to make plays. You can't waste opportunities like that and we wasted a lot today.
On the players having a lot of confidence this early in the season
I really sense it from the defensive side, I think those guys have good energy and they really seem like they're having a good time. That bleeds over to our side too and they just feed off of each other. We try to create an atmosphere where people are happy to play so hopefully that shows.
On working with the defense
I've known a lot of these guys for awhile, so I sit in their meetings when we're not in meetings just because I want to see how defensive people pattern and scheme things. I'll tell them what's tough on us and then they'll tell me whats tough on them - it's just helping each other out and tweaking things.
On the weather
I thought we would be freezing out there, but God's taken care of it.
Offensive Line coach Bill Bedenbaugh
On the offensive line
Right now they're confident - at least the first group is - then its just a matter of the younger guys getting comfortable.
On the return of offensive lineman Josh Jenkins
He looks pretty good, a little hesitant the first day - which is understandable - but once he gets into it with pads and starts hitting he'll start feeling confident again. He can't worry about it (the injury), whatever happens is going to happen he just has to go out there and play full speed. He brings experience to the whole group.
On the Oklahoma drill
It's a great drill. It's just one-on-one to see who's tough. There's not a whole lot of technique involved; it's coming off the ball, staying low, moving your hands and feet and simply seeing who's tougher.
On focusing on technique
The more reps you do of something the more comfortable you'll feel. You have to draw confidence from success and believe you can do it over and over. Those guys really took that into the off season, worked hard and now they're taking it onto the field.
On getting the pads on
This is where you see who is going to hit people. A lot of guys can look good in shorts and a helmet but now it's about seeing who can go out there and hit people while still executing their assignment and their technique.
Co-Defensive Coordinator Keith Patterson
On the first day of pads
There is just a difference on the first day with pads. Speaking specifically from a linebacker standpoint, we had some mistakes, but again the effort has been really good. It’s just like learning a new language. You can see the guys trying to process everything, and overall I’ve been very pleased.
On gauging guys before putting on pads
The thing you can learn from the first two days is what kind of effort. It’s hard to tell how you’re going to fit the run and when you have pads on how guys are going to make tackles and plays in space. I was very pleased with what we saw at parts of practice. I think we started strong and finished with the intensity that we need to. We just need to keep bringing it because we can’t let one practice go by without making the most of it.
On the transition from the 3-3-5
The guys who have experience playing and even at linebacker, it hasn’t been that big of a transition. We’re moving forward and I like where we are.
On what was installed today
We put in a new coverage and some of the concepts are different, but we’re facing different concepts everyday from our offense. We’re going out their cold turkey and you basically just have to react to it.
Defensive Coordinator Joe DeForest
On day one in pads
I thought it was very exciting. These kids play hard. Their practice tempo is amazing and I’m very impressed. We just have to keep piecing different defensive fronts and whenever we put it all in, we’ll see what sticks on the wall and what we want to go with in the season.
On where the tempo comes from
It’s a combination. It’s what we demand of the players, but they’ve been trained pretty well.
On the new defensive staff
We’re getting along great. We have great meetings and we’re getting to know each other and our tendencies. I think we have a great staff put together, Dana did a great job, and I think as we work together throughout spring and fall camp it’s going to get that much better.
On seeing guys full speed
When we saw them offseason it’s just them running around doing drills. It was a great step. They did an unbelievable job of handling the pads and handling their teammates and flying to the ball.
Special Teams Coordinator Steve Dunlap
On the new staff
Football coaches are football coaches and if they like to coach football I like to be around them.
Learning the new schemes
There isn’t anything I haven’t played. In 36 years there isn’t much I haven’t seen. It’s just names and there was something we put in today that I know six names for. It’s still the same stuff, just a matter of putting names in.
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