The Purple/Gold spring football scrimmage
is less than two weeks away. After watching the scrimmage this past
Friday in the rain, I'm sure Skip Holtz wishes it were two months away.
The good thing about ECU football is that it probably can't get any
worse. Or can it?
The offense ran 11 10-play possessions, which were split up into six
first-and-10 plays and four third-and-six snaps. Zero touchdowns and
five turnovers. Granted, the weather played a factor, but the offense
failed to score on every series. That's not a good sign.
The defense confused the offense on the majority of the snaps. They met
the running backs at the line of scrimmage, hit hard and contested
every yard. They scored a touchdown and created five turnovers. Greg
Hudson's squad is light years ahead of the offense. Does that mean that
the defense will be good or is the offense really bad? It's probably
too early to tell.
Some thoughts from the first scrimmage:
Chris Johnson and Robert Tillman both impressed Holtz. Johnson still
has his breakaway speed. He is small enough to squeeze through holes.
In this new offense, Johnson should have a monster season. Tillman
looks natural being back at running back. He was a super talent his
freshman year, but got lost in the shuffle this past season. As of
right now, Tillman will push Johnson for time. When the new busload of
running backs arrives on campus, things may change. But for now, these
two smaller backs will do an ample job of carrying the load. Jermarcus
Veal is also shining this spring. On Friday, he stood out individually
more than anyone else.
The DB position had been a weaker position the last couple of seasons.
It won't be anymore. The position now has depth, some headhunters, and
some guys that will make plays. Jamar Flournoy and Pierre Parker could
form a very dangerous tag team. Travis Williams and Erode Jean are
lockdown corners. Demetrius Hodges and Markeith McQueen are talented
backups. Having some experience will allow the recruits to probably
So goes the quarterback, so goes the team. If Friday was any
indication, the team might not go very far. Davon Drew got verbally
spanked several times by Holtz. On one occasion, Holtz felt that Drew
predetermined his pass before the snap. Drew was rattled and threw an
interception on the very next play. Holtz wasn't as mad about the
interception because he chose the correct receiver even though he did
not put enough loft on the ball. Holtz would rather have his
quarterback make a mental mistake rather than a physical one. Drew's
throwing motion is very unorthodox and similar to Philip Rivers. The
6-foot-4-inch Drew will get the nod today when the depth chart is
released because of his athleticism, but he is going to have to learn
how to manage the game. Phil Petty, undoubtedly the youngest member of
this staff, has his work cut out for him. Don't be surprised if one of
the freshmen gets a solid look in the fall. Drew may be the guy, but
right now, that's not saying much.
It was raining, but the wide receivers had trouble catching the ball.
Several players let the pigskin slip through their hands. Also, very
few receivers created separation or made plays. Maybe the quarterback
failed to see them, but no receivers stepped up. With so many
receivers, it was surprising that no one sensed the opportunity and
snagged it. It's clear that Holtz prefers speed burners to larger
receivers with better hands. Aundrae Allison and Will Bland got the
majority of the snaps while Kevin Roach seldom saw the field.