For a long time, I've heard that the purpose of Spring Training in baseball is to let the hitters catch up to the pitchers. Well, if today's practice was any indication, the purpose of Spring Practice in College Football is to let the offense catch up with the defense. Or, at least, that's the way it looked today out on Spaulding Field.
When I say that, I'm saying one of two things. Either our defense looked really, really good today or our quarterbacks looked really bad. That's all due to all of the interceptions which were thrown today by our quarterbacks. Jaleel Wadood had a few and Freshman Nathan Meadors had one as well. Apparently, Meadors, who was a part of this February's recruiting class, has already enrolled and has joined the team for Spring Practice because he is listed on the roster wearing #22. I wasn't able to note who had the others, but it was obvious that the quarterbacks need to work with the receivers on the timing of their routes.
Interceptions aside, the receivers were dropping a lot of catchable balls today and the quarterbacks were also overthrowing their targets quite a bit.
On the other hand, Nate Starks was clearly serious the other day when he told reporters that he'as been working on his explosiveness. He seemed to be very explosive off the ball today. He definitely powered his way through the defensive line a few times and got into the secondary. Once he got into the secondary, he seemed to turn on the afterburners to finish the play strong.
From a fan perspective, it was standing room only and that's not just because the bleachers that had previously been in Spaulding have been removed. Fans were three deep in the barriered view area and there were more along the wall of Lot 8 looking down onto the field.
It wasn't just a great turnout for the fans. There were a lot of high school players there. It seemed like there were more than in recent years. Hopefully, this bodes well for future recruiting.
To wrap up for today, I have an interesting thought. Anyone who was at practice noticed that Coach Mora has brought in a group of officials to observe the action. I'm not sure if these guys are a Pac-12 officiating crew, a high school crew, or something else entirely. But, having watched these guys throughout our entire practice, it was clear that they didn't really do much. Other than throwing a few flags for pass interference, I really wondered what purpose was being served by having them there.
One would think that their purpose would be to call all penalties they see, but, given how frequently we were penalized in games and how infrequently these guys actually threw flags in practice today, it would seem that, perhaps, the origin of our penalty problems may stem from practice officials not throwing flags on all fouls. Then again, I may be totally wrong on this.