Sunday , August 17, 2014 - 10:58 AM
OGDEN -- The final scrimmage for the Weber State football team took place Saturday morning in front of a small crowd of WIldcats fans at Stewart Stadium. They saw the team continue to make progress.
“I like the status of the team right now, you just want to continue to take those incremental steps forward over these next 10 days,” said head coach Jay Hill. “You always wish to be a little bit further ahead than you are, but they’re really where I hoped we’d be by this time.”
Aside from occasional mental mistakes made on both sides, the new head coach noticed improvement.
“We’re still having too many penalties, which is driving me nuts,” said Hill. “There was one time the defense had 12 men on the field, the offense had some guys moving late. Just those penalties that you can’t have -- the mental mistakes we’ve got to eliminate, but as a whole I think we still took another step forward.”
A lot the mistakes made during the scrimmage came from the back-up squads, a big issue that has been present throughout camp. Hill hopes to see more improvement in that regard through the few days.
“They’re the ones mainly getting the penalties, and they were the ones making mistakes in the two-minute drill,” said Hill of the backups. “The sense of urgency with a lot of the twos is still not where we need it. The (starters) I see getting better and better. The twos have got to step it up this last week.”
With the absence of quarterback Jadrian Clark after a minor hamstring injury, BYU transfer Billy Green took advantage of more playing time, and has impressed his coaches.
“As of right now, I definitely see him as the starter,” said Hill. “We haven’t announced that yet, but I definitely see him as the frontrunner for that spot.”
In terms of improvement, Coach Hill mentioned that Green needs to get the ball out on time, and make all of his reads instead of most of them.
“He manages the offense well, and rarely does he make a mistake to where he puts us in a compromising situation,” Hill continued. “He’s got to continue to manage it that way and just get the ball out a little quicker.”
Green went 5-of-7 passing for 80 yards, including a 15-yard touchdown to Shaydon Kehano.
“It was a good day. The offense came out and played well,” said Green. “A lot of guys stepped up and played well. There’s still some things we need to clean up obviously, but I’m happy about today. I feel really confident in the offense and the play makers we have.”
As far as a barometer for how the team is doing in a game, look to the balance of running versus passing plays.
“If we’re running it successfully, we’re not going to throw it,” said Hill. “If we can run it, we’re going to run it, and we’re going to use our play action and get the ball deep down the field. If we don’t have to throw it, that means we’re winning and we’re running the ball good.”
The team has already begun studying film of Arizona State, and feels confident that they’ll be able to compete in the season opener on Aug. 28.
“(We’ve) got a pretty good idea of what they’re going to do, so we feel confident going into the game, we feel well prepared,” said Green. “We feel that we can go in there and really compete.”
Contact sports reporter Brandon Garside at firstname.lastname@example.org, on Twitter @BGarsideSE, and on Facebook.com/BrandonGarsideSE
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