University of Tennessee at Chattanooga wide receivers coach Will Healy went into spring practice looking for some consistent pass-catchers to emerge. The Mocs are looking for more variety in their offense and more explosiveness, and to make that happen they need more from their wideouts.
A converted quarterback (Terrell Robinson, 40 receptions) and tight end Faysal Shafaat (37 receptions) were the top targets last season and they're both back and poised for big seasons. Healy said rising junior Tommy Hudson has had a very good spring.
"I know I have Tommy Hudson that can play, that knows how to get lined up, is consistent and runs great routes and blocks extremely well," Healy said before Wednesday's practice, the Mocs' last of the spring before Saturday's Blue and Gold game. "I am 100-percent sold on him as an all-conference receiver next year. The other ones, I'm still unsure about."
Hudson was third on the team last season with 31 catches. He said he likes the direction the offense is taking under new coordinator Jeff Durden.
"I think it's a little more organized and it's a higher tempo," said Hudson, who caught 102 passes in the spread offense as a senior at Colquitt County (Ga.) High School.
Of the other wideouts, including Marlon Anthony and Ron Moore, Healy said they have to be more consistent. There were three wideouts in UTC's signing class and Healy said all three will get a shot at contributing next season.
Left tackle Brandon Morgan, who missed part of the 2012 season with a shoulder injury and most of the spring following surgery, practiced Monday and Wednesday. Mocs coach Russ Huesman said he should be able to participate in the spring game.
The offensive line has been without starters Morgan and left guard Synjen Herren throughout the spring until Morgan's return this week. Right tackle Hunter Dockery, who started seven games last season after Morgan was injured, has missed the past two practices (illness) and is not expected to participate Saturday.
The Mocs scrimmaged for several periods during Wednesday's practice, which was cut a little short due to lightning. Huesman said the scrimmage was primarily for the younger players. ... The Blue and Gold game is at 2 p.m., at Finley Stadium. There will be a kids clinic at noon and free hot dogs and sodas at 1 p.m.
Contact John Frierson at email@example.com or 423-757-6268. Follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/mocsbeatCTFP.