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Dooley: It's pretty abysmal right now

Derek Dooley isn’t exactly a fan of Tennessee’s passing game right now.

Asked if the passing game may look crisp during Saturday’s scrimmage, Dooley paused for a few seconds to gather his thoughts before responding.

He said, “Well, it’s pretty abysmal right now.  So, I could sit there and dream and say I think we’re going to do it and have a great day passing the football.  The reality is we’ll probably hit a few plays and we’ll probably not look very good.”

“I’m not being a pessimist, but when you watch eight practices and expect something totally different on the ninth, you’re somewhat a lunatic to think that’s going to happen.”

“We have a new tight end and new receivers everywhere and a quarterback who isn’t exactly Bart Starr right now.  It’s a function of everybody.  I know we can’t go compete against good teams with about 6 pass plays.  We’re going to need more than 6.  We’re going to need more than a fade route.”

Just our guess, but Dooley is probably hoping Peyton spends two weeks instead of a few days leading the 7 on 7 pass skel drills in Knoxville this summer.

Video: Pat Fitzgerald stays classy during awkward interview

Earlier today, we tweeted a quote from Kentucky co-defensive coordinator Rick Minter.

Minter said, "I don't even know how to spell patience."

Enter Pat Fitzgerald, who on the other hand, demonstrated humility, grace, and patience among other things today during his post-practice media session.

The session started out as normal, but became pretty damn funny when a young reporter (the guy might be 19) interupts at the 1:49 mark with, “Sorry for jumping in late…just how did everything go today?”

You gotta see it.

Next question from the same reporter…”You guys had another big physical practice.  You said Tuesday that you really liked seeing the guys kinda jaw and go at it.  I mean, can you get a lot out of these kinds of practices with full pads?”

Fitzgerald’s reaction and answer is priceless.  He could have looked at the guy with a dumbfounded, "Huh?"  Fitz being Fitz was classy and humble.

Here’s the evidence:

Lincoln Riley admits he was wrong

East Carolina offensive coordinator Lincoln Riley says his initial perception of East Carolina couldn’t have been more off.

The former wide receivers coach under Mike Leach at Texas Tech, Riley did a solid job in his first season at East Carolina a year ago.  Expectations were not as high as usual, but the Pirates made a bowl game and averaged 36 points per game.

While speaking at a local luncheon this week, according to the Daily Reflector, Riley explained, “When I got here, the first thought in my mind was, ‘It's a Conference USA school. I want to be a coordinator, but this is going to be little bit of a step down for me, as far as the quality of the school.”

“I think you have those preconceived notions, but once you get here, you see how special this place is, and really, how special it can become. I think this can get really big. I look at Greenville and I look at ECU and specifically ECU football, I don't see any reason why we can't be a power team in a BCS conference.”

He added, “A lot of BCS schools would kill for the atmosphere and the fan support that we have here, and I think it's just a matter of time.”

Riley will be tested early in the year.  The Pirates first four games are against South Carolina (Ellis Johnson), Virginia Tech (Bud Foster), UAB (Tommy West), and North Carolina (Everett Withers).  The South Carolina game will be played in Charlotte.  The next three are in Greenville.

Turner Gill's practice play of the day

Kansas has a couple of things going with the launching of CoachTurnerGill.com and the practice play of the day.

A theme on the new website is “Believe in each other, and things not yet seen.”  One of the neat things on the site is the ability to watch previous episodes of “The Gridiron,” the weekly in-season behind-the-scenes look at Kansas football.

The Jayhawks are now 5 practices in to spring ball after a winter condition program admittedly focused on making the players more explosive and mentally tough.

Gill has been pleased with the wide receivers.

"I think the wide receivers are doing pretty well," said Gill. "As a unit they look pretty good. At this point no one person is standing out, but we have a good solid group there. Coach Beaty is an outstanding coach and a great communicator. He gets his players to really respond well on the football field and I know they will as we get into the season."

No one person may be standing out consistently, but we ask ‘Who is this wide receiver making the sweet grab in Turner’s practice play of the day?’

Courtesy of a tweet from Coach Gill, here is the film.

You even get the inter-cut version.  We like it.

UPDATE: Email from a hardcore defensive line coach: Looks like illegal man downfield on the center.  

 

SPRING FOOTBALL - PLAY OF THE DAY # 4 from Kansas Jayhawks on Vimeo.

Video: The making of Nick Saban's statue

Nick’s statue goes up on Saturday in Tuscaloosa prior to the Alabama spring game.

Having won the 2009 national championship, Saban will be the fourth coach with a bronze statue outside Byrant-Denny Stadium next to the Walk of Champions.

Saban, Bear Bryant, Gene Stallings, Wallace Wade, and Frank Thomas have all led the Crimson Tide to a national championship.

Considering the awful circumstances surrounding the oak trees at Toomer's Corner in Auburn, we'll bet Bama security will have a close eye on the statues for the immediate future.  

Saban's statue was created by a truly gifted undergraduate student named Jeremy Davis.  Davis' work from start to finish was captured on film.

 

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