Filed by Wesley Rucker
So, this is spring, huh?
Call me crazy, but 41-degree weather isnt spring. A 36-degree wind chill isnt spring.
Nonetheless, UTCs brave Mocs started spring practice in winter conditions Friday at Finley Stadium.
The smart players wore sweatshirts under their jerseys, and the smarter ones added sweatpants on top of their shorts. Of course, there were the tough guys in T-shirts and shorts those types are pretty common across the offensive line but they didnt impress me. Quite the opposite in fact.
With four new coaches and about twice that many new transfer players on the field, UTC had a good tempo despite the weather. Everyone out there was upbeat, and coach Rodney Allison smiled for most of the two-plus-hour workout.
Allison said newfound depth at every position except the offensive line was his primary cause for joy.
I like this team, he said. I think were finally in a position now where we can compete with the rest of this conference. Its a good feeling. I think its legit, but it depends on how hard were willing to work.
Its nice to see a bunch of them out here. Theres so much depth at just about every position.
The junior college and Division I-A transfers all passed my first eyeball test. Central Michigan cornerback transfers Ronnie Jackson and Raeshon Ball are both extremely quick, and Ball the younger brother of Georgia Tech quarterback Reggie Ball looked like the kind of small guy who will knock your block off.
Kent State receiver transfer Joey Barcus is lean but extremely cut, and he moves well, too.
Junior college defensive linemen transfers Malachi McGee and Steven Washington looked like theyll contribute. McGee looks like a solid I-AA nose tackle, and Washington looks like a project that will be worth the wait. When the 6-foot-5, 230-pound former wideout puts on some weight, he could be scary coming off the end.
And West Virginia center Zac Davis looked solid, as well.
A lot of the players looked solid actually. Most of the guys who needed to add weight did.
Tight ends Joseph Pitman and John Parkinson look more like tight ends now, for starters. The linebackers looked good, too. A lot of positions did.
Weve had a great offseason in the weightroom, Allison said. Coach (Scott) Brinks has done his job.
Of course, this was all without pads. The men will separate themselves when those come on in a few days.
Hopefully itll be warmer then.