While spring football game was over couple of weeks ago more spring practice related news and notes keep trickling out of WWL. Ted Miller did a "UCLA spring wrap-up" on his Pac-10 blog which posed the following questions for this coming Fall:
1. Is there any hope for the O-line? The line was awful this spring just as it was last fall. There's plenty of experience with six returnees who started at least five games in 2008, though two sat out spring practices with injuries. And there's plenty of incoming possibilities, with touted freshmen and JC transfers arriving in the fall to offer alternatives. It feels like the Bruins' bowl hopes rest almost entirely on whether this unit can find some answers.
2. D-line depth: The Bruins starting crew of tackles Price and Jerzy Siewierski and ends Korey Bosworth and Datone Jones form one of the better foursomes in the Pac-10, but depth, especially at tackle, needs to develop. An injury or two here and things get pretty thin.
3. Playmakers on offense: If the offensive line figures things out, and Prince comes through, then somebody has to do something with the football in the passing game. During spring practices, the performance of the receivers was mediocre to bad, though true freshman hybrid tight end/receiver Morrell Presley lived up to his hype. If the veterans don't step up, then a strong incoming freshman class -- including speedster Randall Carroll -- is going to move up quickly.
Well Randall Carroll was in the news this weekend in a big way. In case you missed it because the post has scrolled down in last 48 hours Carroll ran the the fastest 100 meter time in California in last 17 years over this weekend. Here is a video (HT CPBBruinFan at Bruin Roar) evidence of Carroll's speed:
May 2, 2009 Track Preliminaries-Randall Carroll (via bishopamatlancer)
Randall ran the third-fastest legal 100 time in state history (he also won the 200 in 2011). We haven't had speed like this in our program in a long time. If he CRN and Chow are able to utilize that speed this coming Fall, look out.
Also, speaking of scrolled down, jtthirtyfour flagged a great piece from WWL's Ivan Maisel on ATV. For those of us who follow the program on day to day basis there isn't any breaking news in the story. However, I did found some quotes from the piece interesting include ATV's take on how he applies his intense interst in math on the playing field:
Verner said there might be parallels between some math work and measuring the flight of the ball through the secondary while on a dead sprint toward a receiver who has you by three inches and 20 pounds. His head coach sees the connection.
"We say all the time that football is a game of leverage and angles. If that doesn't come straight from the math homework assignments, I don't know what does," Neuheisel said. "He's just got great instincts. He's a hard worker. Math requires a lot of diligence, in terms of staying on top of things, being aware of formulas. Alterraun has done a great job of studying offenses. … He is very instinctive. He has great anticipation, and that comes from the study that he puts forth."
More from Neuheisel on his senior superstar/leader of the team:
"He is a unique individual and he is as advertised," Neuheisel said. "He is just a model citizen, a great leader, a great role model for the young kids in the secondary as well as the kids on the team. And I think a legitimate NFL prospect. It's fun to be around him. He will hopefully flourish as a senior."
For those who went to the spring game you know ATV didn't waste any time to make his mark. He intercepted a Prince pass in the very past series. If you want to see more highlights from this spring game (in case you are as desperate for football highlights as I am), check out the spring game highlights from the official site. I still wish they would consider putting them on YouTube, Vimeo or some other video player with embed options. I think that would help them to get the word out even more and gin up more excitement around the program.