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Spring Practice Update #12 (4/15)

BigPawzSharpClawz

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April 16, 2013

The University of Montana Grizzly football team began their final week of spring drills with practice number 12 on Monday (April 15), on a chilly and breezy evening in Washington-Grizzly Stadium.

The Grizzlies' three remaining practice sessions: Wednesday, April 17 (8:30 p.m. start); Thursday, April 18 (begins at 6:45 p.m.); and their final practice on Friday, April 19 culminates with their third scrimmage this spring in Washington-Grizzly Stadium, which starts around 7:15 p.m. There is no admission charge for Friday's scrimmage.

There will be festivities before and after Friday night's scrimmage. Two Grizzly greats will be on hand, as the two quarterbacks who led the Grizzlies to national championships, Dave Dickenson (1995) and John Edwards (2001) will talk to the crowd prior to the scrimmage.

Also, following the scrimmage, Dickenson, Edwards, and UM's current players will sign autographs after the scrimmage, and the 2013 Grizzly Football Poster will be available at that time as well.

Another highlight will be when head coach Mick Delaney tells his team (prior to the scrimmage) who they have chosen to be their 2013 team captains. The 2013 team captains will be recognized prior to Friday's scrimmage.

Coach Delaney said he was pleased with his team's effort at Monday's practice.

"For some reason when we get to April it gets cold and the wind blows, and I guess that is kind of typical," Delaney said. "We had some really nice weather there before (spring) break. It is was it is, and that's why we came out here at six o-clock in the morning during the winter, and it was just like this.

"I didn't see a guy today whining or complaining because it was cold, they just got down to business and went to work," Delaney said. "We got it back a little bit today because of the fact that we banged around pretty good on Saturday (at the scrimmage in Ronan), and we need a good work day this Wednesday to hopefully put on a really good show on Friday night.




"I think our offense is getting better day-by-day, and that's just a work in progress," Delaney said. "But we've still got a long way to go. You don't see guys making the same mistakes over and over, which tells me they're learning, which is very encouraging.
"Addison Owen and Jeremiah Kose are playing very well for us this spring and are two outstanding linebackers," Delaney said. "They add very good depth behind (senior linebackers) Brock Coyle, J.P. Kanongata'a, and Jordan Tripp. Connor Lebsock is starting to get a good feel in there (he was moved from safety to linebacker this spring), and Kelsey Lippert, a walk-on, is also doing a nice job for us, and both of those guys are sophomores too."

GoGriz.com's "Top 10" from practice #12:

1. During the early portion of the blitz/passing drills the defense had four consecutive sacks by sophomore end Tyrone Holmes, sophomore safety Zach Gratton, sophomore tackle Caleb Kidder, and senior linebacker Jordan Tripp.

2. On the series which started from the defense's 30-yard line, redshirt freshman quarterback Brady Gustafson connected with junior running back Travon Van on a 30-yard touchdown pass.

3. In early "skelly" drills, junior quarterback Jordan Johnson had two pass completions in a row to sophomores wide receivers Ellis Henderson and Chase Naccarato, covering 20 and 28 yards, the offense starting from the 30-yard line of the defense. Naccarato made a tough, diving catch on the left sideline, going out of bounds at the 2-yard line.

4. Also in "skelly," sophomore quarterback Trent McKinney scored on a 9-yard scramble, on a series which started at the 9-yard line of the defense. McKinney led the Griz with 7 touchdown rushes last season.

5. Jordan Canada continued to have an outstanding spring, scoring touchdowns on three 25-yard runs. Sandwiched in between Canada's TD runs was a 25-yard pass from Johnson to Henderson, who made a difficult, sliding reception.

6. Sophomore end Zach Peevey had a solid day with a sack, TFL, and pass deflection.

7. Sophomore linebacker Addison Owen stopped sophomore halfback Joey Counts for a 2-yard loss on a screen pass from Johnson. Owen also had two sacks during the course of play, and is getting a lot or reps due to the absence of senior linebacker Brock Coyle, who remains out because of a leg injury.

8. On a misdirection play starting from the 15-yard line going in, Johnson hit senior tight end Clay Pierson in the right corner of the end zone for a 15-yard scoring pass, and there was not a defender within 10 yards of Pierson.

9. A couple of plays after the hook-up for a TD with Pierson, Johnson scrambled for a 12-yard touchdown. Johnson rushed for 506 yards and 4 touchdowns in 2011.

10. Practice ended with a fun offense versus defense, with a pair of assistant coaches throwing the football into a net. Throwing for the offense was assistant head coach Scott Gragg, while associate head coach Legi Suiaunoa represented the defense. The competition did not last long, as Gragg hit the target twice before Legi got a throw off. The win by the offense resulted in the players on "D" having to do pushups.

GRIZ GRIDIRON MISC. NOTES: The Grizzlies will have eight senior who have played in 32 games or more going into the 2013 season: Steven Rominger (32); William Poehls (32); Sean Murray (34); John Kanongata'a (35); Danny Kistler (35); Bo Tully (35); Jordan Tripp (39); and Brock Coyle (40).

Some more key stats from a year ago: 1. Montana was 11th in the FCS in rushing at 235.73 yards a game. 2. The Griz were tied for 21st in the country, averaging 7.00 per game. 3. UM was tied for 27th in the nation in scoring, averaging 31.64 ppg.

Junior wide receiver Mitch Saylor and senior linebacker Brock Coyle remain out because of injuries, and are not expected to participate in the scrimmage this Friday night.

FUN FACT: There were 10 former Griz players on NFL rosters last season: Colt Anderson, Safety (Eagles); Kroy Biermann, DE (Falcons); Dan Carpenter, K (Dolphins); Lex Hilliard, RB (Jets); Trumaine Johnson, CB (Rams); Marc Mariani, WR/Returner (Titans); Caleb McSurdy, LB (Cowboys); Chase Reynolds, RB (Rams); Shann Schillinger, Safety (Falcons); and Jimmy Wilson, CB (Dolphins).
 
granitegriz said:
How many former Bobcats are in the NFL? Just wondering.
I couldn't find any... I could be wrong tho. I thought Akpla (spelling) was drafted but I also think he was cut...
 
Dane Fletcher was on the Patriots roster and normally a big contributor (he was hurt). Mike Pearson was on the Niners roster, got cut, and another team (can't remember who) picked him up.

Akpla was on the Eagles roster for a bit but got cut before the season ever started. He is now playing in the CFL on the same team as Lulay, I believe.
 
NLGrizFan said:
granitegriz said:
How many former Bobcats are in the NFL? Just wondering.
I couldn't find any... I could be wrong tho. I thought Akpla (spelling) was drafted but I also think he was cut...

He is on the same team as Lulay, B.C. Lions I believe
 
Some more key stats from a year ago: 1. Montana was 11th in the FCS in rushing at 235.73 yards a game. 2. The Griz were tied for 21st in the country, averaging 7.00 per game. 3. UM was tied for 27th in the nation in scoring, averaging 31.64 ppg.

Tied for what? Sacks?
 
BDizzle said:
Dane Fletcher was on the Patriots roster and normally a big contributor (he was hurt). Mike Pearson was on the Niners roster, got cut, and another team (can't remember who) picked him up.

Akpla was on the Eagles roster for a bit but got cut before the season ever started. He is now playing in the CFL on the same team as Lulay, I believe.

I just received my new Eastbay catalog and Dane Fletcher is on the cover of it.
 
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