At this point in the preseason, repetition becomes a key aspect of the training for the football team. Plays are run on offense over and over again to fine tune and perfect performance. The defense sees the opponent's basic scheme over and over again in order to learn how to recognize variations. This is an important aspect of practice.
Unfortunately, repetition also seems to apply to questions from reporters. Anyway, here is Coach Mora after today's practice:
So, in case no one here had heard it a hundred times over the summer, we have a pretty young team. As Coach Mora reveals, we only have 12 seniors and 6 or 7 juniors. But you know, the young guys aren't exactly slouches. Mora says that he has some "anxiety" over it, given the lack of experience, but he seems to have a lot of trust in the young players as well.
Now, combining that youth with a relatively unknown opponent can certainly make things interesting. The Saturday night lights and the bigger stage could be an issue for some of the freshmen, and Mora specifically mentioned our long snapper and punter. But all of those things can also be opportunities (hear that DG, you lazy turd jockey?) and Mora is confident that they will do just fine.
Practice is getting smoother and easier as they now get to focus on the opponent. Mora says that the hardest week is probably that third week of camp, after the hard training without an opponent on whom to tee off. Yes, we know coach...it's hard for us too! We're focused and ready... Still, even during this week, things must be tempered and emotions kept in check so as to not, uh, "shoot your wad" too early. Hey, get your mind out of the gutter!
Of course, this team has never faced the Pistol in a live game, though some of the defensive players might remember a few things from the Neuheisel era. And it is not clear if Nevada will run that exclusively or add in some spread formations, given their new coach. The key will be to remain fundamentally sound, stay on assignments and be disciplined. With our OL also running some zone read, it could be useful to the defense too.
With regards to the pressure being on Hundley, Mora rightly says that the pressure is always on. Besides, Brett does well under pressure, with Mora pointing to the good stats from 3rd downs last year. Meanwhile, ever the classy coach, Mora had nothing but praise for the Nevada QB and was complimenting his versatility and skills, while calling him very good and fearless. I hope a certain someone puts the fear of Barr in him...
Finally, you know that depth chart that was released? Yeah...Mora says to put zero credence in it and that he only did it because he was asked to. He rightly points to the fact that some players are starters on some packages and not others. So it is not possible to reflect things accurately...though some positions are of course spoken for!
All right everyone, hope you don't have the shakes too bad, Saturday is only 4 days away.
In the meantime, for the love of all that is Bruin, please, PLEASE contribute to the billboard so that we can get that mediocrity-loving, chianti-sipping, program-destroying sorry excuse of an athletic director out of Westwood.