Monday, August 14, 2006

High Praise for Newbies

Chances are that most of you remember what it was like to go through two-a-days in high school. It was the two weeks of the year that I dreaded more than anything, but it's what got you in shape to play a full season. The things I should remember, like every touchdown, every pass I caught, or every pancake block I delivered are distant memories. But, I can tell you without hesitation every time I puked during two-a-days. With that in mind, I can't help but laugh every time I read an article involving Coach Rod these days. He would have made a great drill instructor in another life.
From the Beckley Register Herald:

"We need to sharpen the steel a little bit," coach Rich Rodriguez said as West Virginia University heads into the final week of preseason football practice.

"We haven't even grinded them yet. We need a hard, hard week of practice where the weather is hot. The players have to push themselves through it."

Did your parents have any children that lived maggot?

In other non-sadistic news, Coach Rodrugez is giving a lot of praise to walk-on fullback Maxwell Anderson. From the same article:

Meantime, the headman said he views freshman Maxwell Anderson, an invited walk-on, as a player in the mold of junior fullback Owen Schmitt, the holdover starter.

"He'’s a great young man," he said. "I'’m excited for him. There'’s no question he'’s going to be able to help our football team."

For those of you that don't know, Rodriguez keeps Owen Schmitts facemask that he broke in the first half of last year in his office as a memento. Hopefully that explains how impressive you have to be to be compared to Schmitt. I don't know that he holds on to any other such trophy's.

Then there's Ed Collington, a reserve tailback looking to work his way into the rotation. From the Charleston Gazette:

"He'’s a little bigger than Steve, and he runs strong, ’" West Virginia coach Rich Rodriguez said. "He'’s just learning, but heÂ's picked it up fast. There'’s no question he figures in our plans."

For a team that has such high expectations, there are certainly quesiton marks at the skill postitions. But, it would seem that the pieces are falling into place at the right time. Last year at this time, the big concern was at the wide receiver and quarterback positions. That turned out ok, didn't it? Sure, you can never count on the same thing happening twice, but I have a feeling that the production won't drop off too much when the startes take a break.

I don't have a link for it right off, but freshman DB Guesly Dervil is turning some heads, and could work his way into the rotation. The former Illinois recruit is making some people take notice. When he did not qualify at Illinois, he decided to take a year off and get his grades in order, as well as working on his speed. In honor of Orson Swindel @ EDSBS,

Name retracted has to be kicking himself over the loss of that one!

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