Friday, August 17, 2012
SEC scrimmage recaps, notes
By Edward Aschoff
A couple more scrimmages took place around the SEC Thursday, while other teams finished up fall camp before classes start next week.
Here are some notes from around the league:
The Tigers conducted a 120-play scrimmage to officially close fall training camp. Coach Les Miles declared the defense the winner of the scrimmage, as LSU went through different game situations, including redzone and tight zone, first-and-10, third-and-long, and two-minute and four-minute offenses.
“I thought the defense played well,” Miles said. “I thought there was some really good tackling and I thought the guys up front got after it pretty good. I think the defense won the day, but I think that there was enough offense for us to overcome some of the mistakes that we made."
The defense was led by safety Eric Reid and linebacker Kevin Minter, who both registered five tackles. Freshmen cornerbacks Jalen Collins and Jalen Mills, who are attempting to fill in for the recently dismissed Tyrann Mathieu, both got work with the first-team defense.
On offense, quarterback Zach Mettenberger stood out again, as he completed 15 of his 26 passes for 170 yards and threw five touchdowns to one interception. The Tigers also rushed for 300 yards, with Alfred Blue and Kenny Hilliard combining for 206 yards on 30 carries.
For more on LSU's scrimmage, check out the school's official website.
Like LSU, Missouri's defense won Thursday's scrimmage. Inconsistency and injuries on offense were issues for the Tigers, according to coach Gary Pinkel. The defense recorded three interceptions, including one that was taken 51 yards for a touchdown by junior defensive back Tyler Davis, recovered a fumble, and registered four sacks. Defensive end Brad Madison recorded two of those sacks.
“Overall there was a lot of good work here," Pinkel said. "As we always do, I think (there's) a lot of things we can learn from. The defense dominated the scrimmage, we’ve got a lot of guys out on offense, we’ve got to get them back, and I think we’ll get most of them back which will help us."
James Franklin led the quarterbacks with 177 yards, throwing a touchdown and an interception. Freshman wide receiver Dorial Green-Beckham continued to impress during camp, as he led the receivers with 68 yards on six catches.
For more on Missouri's scrimmage, check out the school's official website.
Miles supports Mathieu
Even before it was announced that Mathieu has entered into a drug rehabilitation program in Houston instead of playing college football this fall, Miles told reporters on Thursday that he spoke with Mathieu and supports his future decisions.
"I just wanted him to know that we'll support him in whatever he wants to do and help him where we can," Miles said. "At this point in time, he needs to do the things that make him happy and that makes sense for his future. If he does that, we'll all be happy."
Miles wouldn't discuss what advice he gave Mathieu or if the former Heisman Trophy finalist would return to the Tigers in 2013.
Kentucky's Faulkner goes down
Sophomore safety Glenn Faulkner could miss significant time this season after undergoing recent ankle surgery.
“He is out six-to-eight weeks,” Phillips said. “It could be six weeks, we will just have to see how fast he heals. If he heals and we feel like he is ready to go then we will play him, if not then we still have a redshirt (available).”
Faulkner entered the fall behind senior Martavius Neloms. He played in 11 games last year, mostly on special teams, and recorded one tackle.
Vols return home
Tennessee's football team returned to campus after spending almost a week at Milligan College. Coach Derek Dooley considered the road trip a success, and hopes the experience brings his team closer as the season approaches.
"At Milligan we had no distractions, nothing going on," Dooley said. "The mental focus was as good as I've been around with our team and coaches. Of course now, we came back and they all had to move into fall housing so that was a big distracting element. We could start feeling the first day of school coming so we had a lot of mental mistakes out there."
Tennessee had a shortened practice on Thursday, but will work on specific situations Friday.