WVU Football Assistant Coaches Quotes
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. - The West Virginia University football assistant coaches sat down with members of the media earlier today.
Assistant Coach (Offensive Coordinator) Shannon Dawson
On how the players and entire unit are looking so far in camp
There are times where we look really good, and there are times when one guy messes up and makes a play look like we don't know what the heck we're doing. It's frustrating at times, but I think that the one thing we have to keep in mind, too, is there is a certain amount of patience it takes. We're trying to put pieces of the puzzle together, like we're doing with a bunch of guys who are inexperienced. The main thing with those guys is they can't get frustrated. Everybody is competitive, and we have a lot of competition out there. There is a level of frustration. It happens when things aren't clicking exactly the same way you want them to click. I was talking to one kid this morning, and he's like 'I just don't feel like I'm playing like I know I can play.' I told him it is because things aren’t instinctive to him yet. That's natural. He's learning a whole different system. Once it becomes instinctive, where when you see the signal, you execute the play and your natural ability takes over, then that's when you're going to become the player that you know you are. It's a process.
On starting to look at more situational plays in practice
Last few days, we started doing situations. Again, at the beginning we were just running plays. We're not moving the ball, we're were just lining up and trying to execute the plays. Just base, blueprint offense. When you're doing that, there are certain looks defensively that you're just running bad plays into. We weren’t necessarily checking in and out when we see bad looks. So, there are times when you hand the ball off, and you know we wouldn't normally run it into that defensive look. But, we're to get those plays on tape and just rep plays. Now, the situational part of it is a whole different deal. Now, the thought process comes in. You have to think your way through a game. We're working on red zone and goal line stuff. We're working on third-down stuff. It's certain situations where if we're not necessarily in a great play, it's the offenses job to get us in a good play and make checks. We can't take negative plays.
Assistant Coach (Safeties) Tony Gibson
On what Gibson has seen from the safeties once pads have been worn
Obviously, as everybody knows, (Sophomore Safety) Karl (Joseph) and (Redshirt Senior Safety Darwin) Cook are big hitters. Sometimes, they get themselves in trouble, because they get out of control, and those are the things we're trying to work on right now – just keeping them under control and making tackles. For those guys, it's get under control, make the play and let's get lined up and play the next one.
On the development of Sophomore Safety Karl Joseph from last year to this year
It's hard to evaluate. You can watch the film, but until I know exactly what they were being taught, it's hard to compare it. Since I've had him, from spring ball to right now, the improvement with him has been his understanding of the defense and knowing what everyone is doing. I just don't want to teach him what the safeties do. At that spot, you have to know where the linebackers are, what the corners are doing. He's picking up the scheme. I think he has a full understanding of our defense, and I think that's very important for the safety position
On the decisions for the players becoming instinctual
As we go against our offense, it's different formations and motions. Every day there is something new. What we try to do is just repeat install, so they can get a better understanding of it and adjust. I think today is practice 11. So, offensively they'll come out with something new that we're going to have to adjust to and talk about.
Assistant Coach (Running Backs) Jajuan Seider
On Seider’s coaching philosophy
It's all about scheme and progressions. The good thing that we're doing here is we don't overload the kids. We gradually give it to them. Then, we come back in three to four days, and we gradually give them more instruction. Before you take that next step, they get really good at what you have just installed.
On Junior Running Back Dreamius Smith
He's good. He practiced yesterday and did every drill. So, now, it's just getting the confidence to turn loose again. He ran hard yesterday. He's getting the burst back and he’s fine. He'll be even better today than he was yesterday.
Dreamius Smith's ability to catch and run
He's got great ball skills. He can catch the ball. Just the way he looks – you don't even think he's running. He's one of the fastest guys on the team and next thing you know, he's going for 70 or 80 yards and our safety can't catch him. He's deceptive. He's so low to the ground, you don't think he's moving. But he is. He's a really good player. I'm glad we've got him.
Assistant Coach (Defensive Coordinator) Keith Patterson
On sophomore safety K.J. Dillion playing the spur
We refer to it as a nickel back. We teach them like we teach the spur, but some of the things we do are different, if that makes sense. It is similar but not necessarily the same. It allows you to be more multiple, which is what we want to be. We want to be multiple but simple. We want to be able to pose different deployments for offense and try to put doubt in their minds.
On freshman linebacker Al-Rasheed Benton playing right away
Most freshmen coming in, it is not the physical aspect. He (Al-Rasheed Benton) is 250 lbs., as a freshman, and he is strong. He is as strong as guys that have been here four or five years, which is very impressive. Nine times out of 10, what gets most freshmen and keeps them from playing, is the mental aspect of it. There is so much more to defense, so many more coverages and so many more blitz concepts. Every time we change a blitz or coverage, your key might change or your run fit changes. I am not saying there is not going to be a role for Al-Rasheed (Benton), but as far as playing right away he definitely has the physical talent to it.
Assistant Coach (Cornerbacks) Brian Mitchell
On sophomore cornerback Ricky Rumph at safety
It is two-fold. One, you want to make sure the team is put in the best situation, and if we need to move a player to help another position out, we will definitely do that. Ricky (Rumph) has proven that he has great football IQ. He has done a great job of learning what the safeties have done, and we have asked more of him in another role on third down in our nickel package, being the back up guy there. We felt that we have moved a young man that was very savvy and very talented, from a position that we had three guys that were all very similar in ability.
On number of players at cornerback
We have six players right now. That is more than enough. You would like to have five on the travel squad, possibly six depending on what the special team's needs are. You always want two that are developing, but you can only rep so many guys. If you are two deep, and you are solid, then that is great. I feel like we have a mixture of good size, speed and quickness. We still need to develop the position mastery of it, but we are progressing.
On reps at cornerback
We will narrow the reps down probably after this week or mid-next week. We narrowed things down with (sophomore cornerback) Nana (Kyeremeh) not being in the mix anymore and (sophomore cornerback) (Ricky) Rumph not being in the mix, so we narrowed reps down to just those six guys. When you are going through camp, we need healthy bodies. We are not trying to limit the reps of guys that are developing, because we want to have fresh legs every time the guys go out there. If you can continue to develop these guys, yet strain them enough so that they are progressing, why not rep six from the corner position.
On sophomore cornerback Nana Kyeremeh being out
You move forward, and you do not dwell. The kids have done a great job of playing the next play. That is what we see on the football field that is no different than off the football field. Nana (Kyeremeh) would love to have his spirit there and his competitive nature there, but we need to move forward and play the next play and that is what the kids have done. That is part of football. We all adapt, and we have adapted. We will move guys around to make the scheme that much better.
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