Jags End Week With A Limited Contact Situational Scrimmage

August 29, 2009 · By · Filed Under Football 

The Jaguars lining up for a field goal attempt in Friday’s practice.

South Alabama’s final preseason scrimmage saw limited contact and the final hour focused primarily on situational drills. After a very physical four weeks, the Jaguar staff decided to cut the workout short, only going four an hour and a half, and not as physical because oh how physical they have been all summer.

Another reason is that the Jags have a number of players that are questionable going into Monday. “We’ve got a lot of kids banged up,” said Jones “We’ve got some hamstrings we don’t know about and will find out Monday. Nobody is just out as far as the starters or second-teamers, but we’ve got guys that will be questionable this week and we’ll find out about them Monday.”

The Jaguars scrimmage covered almost every special teams situation from kickoff coverage, kick returns, onside kicks, punt coverage, punt returns and punting out of their own end zone. The offense then practiced on driving for game-winning scores with the time running out.

They started the timing drill in their own half of the field. The drill started on the 50 yard-line with the first team offense led by Myles Gibbon with 18 seconds to get into field goal range. After two quick crossing pattern competions to Courtney Smith to get into field goal range. They then sent in, in order, Michel Chapuseaux, Jordan Means and Lawson McGlon to attempt field goals from about 45 yards out. Both Chapuseaux and Means missed their attempts wide while McGlon made his.

The next drill started on the 40 yard-line with 3rd and long with 18 seconds to go. Brennan Sim completed a 16 yard pass to get into field goal range. Lawson McGlon came in for the field goal attempt from 41 yards, which he made.

The offense then moved to red zone drills. Facing 3rd and goal from the 10 yard-line, Gibbon threw an incomplete pass that was almost intercepted at the goal line. But on 4th down he found Corey Waldon over the middle for a touch down. McGlon added the PAT.

Next was a goal line situation on 4th down on the 2 yard-line. Gibbon handed it to Brandon Ross on a draw play, which he scored on. Nick Owens then led a situational drive starting on the 10 yard-line. After two plays, they got down to around the 2 yard-line before Ryan Scott was stopped in the backfield to end that scenerio.

Then to end the scrimmage the defense saw one play of prevent defense so the DB’s could knock down the ball. They had the offense practice one play of being backed up at their own goal line, using the quarterback to follow the linemen to give gain a couple yards. Then for the final practice play they practiced one snap of probably the coaches and fans favorite plays, the victory kneel. After the victory kneel, the players rushed the field and huddled around Coach Jones for his ending remarks.

While most of the practice was focused on game situation drills, which have not been covered frequently since camp began, they also used the practice to begin preparation for their opponent in the programs first-ever game against Hargrave Military Academy. “It was a pure situational scrimmage, but it was one that I think you need to cover mentally before the week of a game,” head coach Joey Jones said. “Things like punting out of the end zone, taking a knee at the end of a game, prevent defense – all those odd situations you don’t work on as much, we saw those this week and will work on them again next week so that if they come up in a game we’re ready for those situations. We did a little bit of work against the scout team today. We tried to sneak a little of that in here the last couple of days, but Monday will be devoted to that.”

“We tried to put them to as close to a game situation as we could on the sideline and with how we warmed up,” Coach Jones continued. “I kind of had to get on them early, but we really focused after that. Once that happened, they really paid attention – I kept checking the sideline to make sure their eyes were on the field. We want to look good warming up, and we want to be organized on the sideline. We’ll continue working on that next week so we’ll be as prepared as we can be when we get out there for a real game.”

Coach Jones said he was very pleased with how his players have performed during preseason camp. “It’s been a great preseason camp,” he commented, “but we’re just ready to go out to Ladd Stadium and have a great time. I think that we are a good bit ahead of where I thought we would be originally. The staff has done such a good job installing the offense, defense and special teams in a way that the players could learn.”

“I’m real pleased with how the coaches have put a good amount of the game plan in, but not too much,” Jones continued. “I’m also happy with how the kids have responded to that – they’ve learned, and they’ve paid attention. They really have been a focused group. Plus, looking back a year and a half ago, the athletes on the field are much better than what I thought they would be at this point.”

This weekend will mark the first time the Jaguars have not been on the field for two consecutive days since before preseason practice started on August 4th. But the Jaguars will be back on the field on Monday for game week preparation for Hargrave. “I’m ready for game week to get here, and I think the kids are too,” Jones commented. “As coaches we like practices, but we’re a little different from the players. We are ready to prepare for an opponent, obviously beginning Monday we will be getting ready every day and every minute for Hargrave Academy.”

T-Minus 7 days until kickoff of the University of South Alabama’s inaugural season of football. GO JAGS!!

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