Jags wrap up preseason camp

August 20, 2011 · By · Filed Under Football 
McGlon Field Goal

Taylor Noon and Lawson McGlon line up for a field goal attempt while Demetre Baker lines up to block.

South Alabama wrapped up preseason camp with a scrimmage lasting about one and a half hours focusing on game-like situations. They will then have the weekend off before returning to the practice field on Monday as well as beginning fall classes.

The scrimmage featured the first and second team offense and defense versus scout teams including special teams. The coaches had them refrane from tackling although they were in full pads.

They began the scrimmage with special teams work on kickoff coverage. That was followed by the first team defense facing the offense with them beginning at the offense’s one-yard line. Later possessions begain at the 20 and 30 yard lines.

The first team offense began at their own 30-yard line and drove down the field to set up a Jordan Means 37 yard field goal.

The punt team came on for some work before the first team offense and defense retured to the field for another series. They worked on second and long, third and long situations for the defense. Then the offense worked on first down, second and long and third and short situations. The final play of the first half of the scrimmage saw Lawson McGlon make a 40-yard field goal.

After the mid-scrimmage break, the first and second team defenses faced short field situations. The second team offense started with a short field and also starting on their own one-yard line.

The second half of the scrimmage saw more special teams work on kickoff and punt returns. Lawson McGlon also notched another 40-yard field goal as well as a 22-yard field goal to end the scrimmage.

The coaches will review the film from the situational scrimmage over the weekend to develop a depth chart as they go into preparation for their September 1 game against West Alabama.

“We exposed our team to a couple of things; sideline organization of the game, which I thought was pretty good for the most part though there are a couple of things we need to talk about as a staff to fix, and situational things on the field,” said head coach Joey Jones. “We didn’t tackle today, which I thought was good. We had a pretty good tempo, sometimes they tend to back off too much when you do that. We got all the special teams covered, we had three reps with each; we’ll watch the film and see what corrections we need to make there.”

Coach Jones then spoke about what the coaches will be doing over the weekend. “Number one, we’re going to evaluate the film and our players, what we need to do offensively and defensively and any corrections we need to make. Then we’ll talk about sideline organization, the things I noticed that we need to go over and get fixed for next week. And we’ll plan next week, how we’re going to attack it with a game a week from Thursday; how we are going to handle those three days before we get into game week. We know we’re going to have a situational scrimmage Thursday as well, bring them in Friday to watch the film and then it will be game week at that point.”

Coach Jones then went over their plan, beginning next week. “We’re going to go ahead and start working on the first ball game — we’ve done a little bit here and there before now, but it will give us an extra three days to work on West Alabama and put our game plan in, then go back and make corrections. There may be a scheme we don’t like or a blitz we don’t like that we will throw out. We’ll whittle it down and get ready for game week.”

Coach Greg Gregory, the Jaguar offensive coordinator, has been pretty pleased with the progression of the offense. “I think our first offense is good. I think the question mark that the so-called experts had about our football team — our offensive line — might be the strength of our offense,” he said. “I think those guys know how to play, they’re not the biggest but they don’t have to be; they block, they run, they’re athletic and they are competitors.”

“I think we’re really good at quarterback with our starter, though we’re thin at receiver right now because we have guys hurt; the guys that are here are having to take every rep, it’s wearing them out and their legs are getting tired,” Continued Coach Gregory. “We’re strong at running back, tight end and fullback. I’m really pleased other than I think we need our backups to make a huge jump. You don’t always need them right away in the first game, but somewhere in the season somebody’s going to have to play. Overall, we are about where I thought we’d be right now, we just have to polish things up between now and Sept. 1. Our kids are chomping at the bit, they’re ready to play.”

Defensive coordinator Bill Clark also spoke well of his unit. “The first thing as far as our guys go is we feel good. We’ve started developing some depth. We’re starting to see those twos, though some of it is due to injury. We’ve been able to see some freshmen and other guys that you wouldn’t see as much, we’ve gotten to throw them into the fire so we feel better about that. Obviously now our focus will start changing next week where we really start concentrating on West Alabama where we’ve been a little more general to start with. Overall we’re pleased with where we are, and we hope we’ll get everybody back well Monday.”

Probably the most encouraging words were spoke by Coach Gregory about the offensive line. If the starting five are solid with three or four really good second string backups ready at any time, then the team will be ready the tests they will face during the season.

The players will have the weekend off to rest and recover before beginning their preparations for the first game against West Alabama and classes starting on Monday.

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