Jaguars Process Continues: Red White Game 2010

March 11, 2010 · Filed Under Football · Comment 

Head Coach Joey Jones watches as Myles Gibbon leads the White team offense as they try to score in the second Red-White Game at Ladd-Peebles Stadium.

The University of South Alabama Spring Football Game showcased alot of talent on both sides of the ball, but it also showed that there is improvement still yet to be had. The defense on both sides really stepped up when needed and the offenses showed flashes of brilliance, however neither side showed any all-around dominance.

On the first drive of the game, the white offense lead by Myles Gibbon, drove 70 yards in 13 plays to put the first points on the board. With the drive facing a fourth-and-one near midfield, it was actually gut-check time. Do they play it safe and punt or do they roll the dice?

Well, the white team rolled the dice and and it payed off. Gibbon completed a pass to Paul Bennett for 13 yards for the first down and to cross the midfield stripe. This play got the offense in gear. Myles carred the ball for six yards, then Santuan McGee rushed twice for 13 more yards. Then Brandon Ross followed with a 17 yard gain to the one yard line on a sweep to the left. Gibbon would cap off the drive with a one yard dive into the end zone to give the White team an early 7-0 lead.

On the second drive of the game, the Red team would drive 55 yards down to the White team’s 25 yard line before getting stopped on a fourth-and-five play.

The White team would take the ball and drive 69 yards in just six plays. The majority of the yards were picked up on a 52 yard strike from Myles Gibbon to Courtney Smith on a post route. However an incomplete pass into the end zone on fourth down from the one yard line would end their drive.

Brennan Sim would lead the Red teams drive from the one yard line and go 99 yards to even the game with less than three minutes until halftime. After trying to run for a few yards of breathing room in the shadow of their endzone, Sim would find Donte Rome for a 14 yard completion on third down to keep the drive alive. Sim would go back to Rome for a 16 yard completion.

On the next play, Brandon Norton would record a sack on Sim costing the Red team eight yards. But he came back with a fake option run which the defensive back bit on and found Kelly Vail on a post pattern which he turned into a 73 yard touchdown.

The second half was a defensive showing with only one score in the second half to show for it.

The drive began when Zach Brownell intercepted a pass and returned it eight yards to the 38 yard line. Gibbon then found Courtney Smith for a first down play to get the ball to midfield. McGee, two plays later, would find a seam and go for 12 yards and another White first down at the Red teams 34 yard line.

Then on third-and-ten, Paul Bennett caught another Gibbon pass in the right flat for 22 yards just as time expired in the third quarter. But the Red team defense would not give up. They would cause three consecutive plays for a loss, including back to back sacks by Clifton Crews and Josh Chestang. This placed the ball on the 36 yard line. With fourth-and-24, the coaches options were limited.

Gambling for a win and some game pressure experience, the White team ran on Jordan Means to attempt a 53 yard field goal. The snap and hold were good and when Means put foot to ball and sent it sailing, everyone watched holding their breath. As the ball barely cleared the cross bar, everyone was wondering if it made it. Then when the referees hands went up in the air, the onlookers gave their loudest cheer of the night as the White team celebrated as well.

The drive and kick covered 13:52 and left about 11:30 for the Red team to try to match them and the White defense did not let the Red team get a drive going of any substance and held on for the victory.

Myles Gibbon went 8-for-9 passing for 131 yards with four of them to Courtney Smith for 83 yards. Paul Bennett had two receptions for 35 yards while Lamontis Gardner also added two receptions. Santuan McGee lead the team rushing with 10 carries for 43 yards and Brandon Ross carried the ball five times for 33 more yards.

The White defense was lead by Romelle Jones with five tackles, 1.5 of them for a loss. Richard Courtney and Logan Bennett each added four tackles while Bryson James had three. In total, the White defense only allowed 207 yards.

Brennan Sim went 13-for-22 with 184 yards. Kelly Vail caught four passes for a game high of 94 yards. Ralph Turner also had four receptions for 39 yards. The Red team offense could only muster 13 yards on 14 attempts, but Eli Smith lead the way with six rushes for 18 yards.

Ken Barefield lead all players with nine tackles, two of them for a loss. Michael Wilson added seven. Clifton Crews and Enrique Williams added four each as well. The Red defense only allowed 12 more yards than the White defense for 219 yards.

Head Coach Joey Jones was on the field observing the play the entire evening. Coach Jones had this to say about the game, “I think the kids had some fun out there. It was a good-spirited night, they’ve been at each other the last couple of days and had a good time. It was a good way to end a long spring training.”

“That was great,” added Coach Jones when asked about the Jordan Means’ field goal attempt. “I was over there and they were ready to run a fourth-down play to try and at least gain some yardage. I reminded them the wind was behind them, though I wasn’t trying to be a head coach. Jordan has a good leg, I knew if he got it going straight he had it. It was a great kick.”

All in all, the players had a great time. There were good spirited ribbing and text messages going back and forth all week according to Romelle Jones. Myles Gibbon added that it was like playing with a completely new team since both teams only had one practice in order to prepare for the game.

At halftime, Mobile businessman David Gwin who is a strong supporter of South Alabama Athletics along with his wife Lynn were recognized for their $100,000 donation for a football sculpture. The sculpture, as stated by President Gordon Moulton, will stand about 20 feet tall and 20 feet wide in the front circle of the entranceway to the Jaguar Football Field House and will be made entirely out of stainless steel.

Coach Jones and his staff honored several players for their efforts in spring practice. Each position received a Most Improved award with the winners being: Quarterback Brennan Sim, Running Back Eli Smith, Wide Receivers Bryant Lavender, Tight End Robby Stoner, Offensive Lineman Levi Slaydon, Defensive Lineman Kendell Bagnerise, Inside Linebacker Brett Hancock, Outside Linebacker Josh Chestang and Defensive Back Michael Wilson.  Other special honors went to Corey Walden on Offense and Ken Barefield on Defense. Charlie Higgenbotham received the “I Like To Practice” award and Brennan Sim earned the High Academic Honors award.

The process to join Division-I football continues on Saturday, September 4 when Pikeville (Kentucky) travels to Ladd-Peebles Stadium to open the 2010 Football season.

Jaguars Hold First Scrimmage Of Spring Practice

February 28, 2010 · Filed Under Football · Comment 

Saturday was the Jaguars first scrimmage of Spring practice and their focus was the passing game. Brennan Sim and Myles Gibbon each threw two touchdowns as the Jaguars offense racked up 286 yards through the air.

Sims was 11-of-21 with 172 yards with his two touchdowns while Gibbon went 6-of-9 for 92 yards and two touchdowns. Gabe Graham completed all four of his passing attempts for 22 yards as well. The Jags had 11 different receivers catching passes on the day with Kelly Vail catching four passes for 111 yards. Courtney Smith caught three for 38 yards as well.

While the defense allowed more than eight yards per passing play, they only allowed 66 yards on 58 carries. Linebacker Justin Dunn and Defensive Lineman Darrius McMullin both lead the defense with seven tackles. Enrique Williams had five tackles including 1.5 for loss. Several others had four tackles. Defensive Back Jonathan Cameron had three tackles to go along with his three pass break-ups. Ken Barefield and Zach Brownell both forced fumbles.

Additionally, the defense was credited with 18 tackles behind the line of scrimmage with 10 of them being quarterback sacks.

The first and second team defenses both held the offenses to three-and-outs on the possessions of the days. It was Gabe Graham, the third team quarterback, who would get the offense in gear when he completed a 10 yard pass to Courtney Smith to get the initial first down of the scrimmage.

The first team offense’s next series saw Sim find Kelly Vail inside the five yard line in stride but Brownell caught him from behind and forced a fumble that would roll out of the back of the end zone.

Two possessions later the offense would finally put the first points on the board. Ross would get a first down on his first carry, which would be followed up by Gibbon hitting Corey Besteda on the left sideline for a 49 yard touchdown.

The defense would answer with two consecutive three-and-outs with three sacks in those six plays. Then they ended the third possession when Eddie Cabrera hauled in an interception which he ran back 17 yards.

The first half of the scrimmage would see the offense getting five first downs but unable to score.

The second half of the scrimmage saw the defense open up with four three-and-outs before Brandon Ross would get two first downs for the offense. But no one was able to score.

It wasn’t until offensive possessions started at the defense’s 40 yard line was the final points of the day put on the board.

Sims found Kelly Vail for a 36 yard completion to move the offense inside the five yard line. Then three plays later Sim would find Ryne Baxter in the left corner of the end zone for a touchdown.

Gibbon would helm the next drive which began with an 18 yard pass to Richard Ross but it would only lead to a 30 yard field goal by Jordan Means.

The final four drives of the day were first-and-goal from the nine yard line. The first ended with a 23 yard field goal by Michel Chapuseaux. The next saw Sim find Smith on a fourth down slant pattern for the eight yard score. The final possession had a nine yard touchdown pass to Robby Stoner from Myles Gibbon.

After the scrimmage, Coach Jones commented on how the Jags played. “Offensively, I think we are throwing the ball a little bit better. That has been an area that we have been looking to improve on. Our defense has just gotten tougher against the run, which is what you want to see. Last fall, it was a little bit porous at times against the offense, but they have done a great job of improving. Sure there are things that still need to be corrected, but I have been pleased with their efforts to stop the running game.”

“We’ve made some improvements in the last week-and-a-half, but we have got to have a great week this week,” Coach Jones continued. “The next four practices we have need to be great because when we get to Monday the week of the spring game we are basically going to be done at that point as far as trying to get better. I think the kids will respond to that challenge.”

The Jags will practice in pads on Monday with limited contact beginning at 7am then on Tuesday the team will resume tackling when they hit the field at 7:30am. The second of the three scrimmages this spring will be on Saturday, March 6. Practices this week and Saturday’s scrimmage will all be held at the Jaguar Practice Facility near the Jaguar Football Field house.