Skip to main content

Analysis of Spring Practice

As promised, here's an analysis of Spring practice 2005, which concluded 2 weeks ago with the White offensive team beating the Brown defensive team 23-9. Happily, there are no further injuries coming out of the spring, and overall it seemed like a very productive spring season for Lehigh. It looks like all 3 units looked good too.

Let's see what were the surprises of spring, what should be a concern, and what battles to view in August.

Surprises
1. The emergence of Winfred Porter. You'd think the talk of the spring would be the emergence of junior deep-threat WR Gerran Walker as a go-to receiver. But Lembo praised fellow junior Porter's spring progress even more. It further solidifies the receiving corps as an area of strength in 2005. It looks like we have talent and depth there.
2. K Musiek's excellent spring. 4 FGs under game situations was a breath of relief after some of last year's problems in the kicking game. What I had tabbed as "a position plagued by too many missed FG and out-of-bounds kickoffs in 2004" is looking to be much more settled after Musiek's strong spring. Now we just need to keep those kickoffs in bounds.
3. LB Micah Greene showing up in the boxscore. With 5th-year senior Anthony "Graz" Graziani, along with rising juniors Owen Breninger and Matt Purdy, I was surprised to see Greene getting a safety in the Brown/White game boxscore. I'm wondering if we may see more of Greene in August going into September as well. Overall, linebacker seems like a very strong position going into August.

Concerns
1. Filling the shoes of Terry, Morrell, and Sandie on the 'O' Line. Lembo said this group is going to have to work during the offseason to gel together, and with the inability to get a running game going in the Brown/White game, it looks like there is still work to do.
2. Secondary. The secondary gave up some chunks of yardage in the Brown/White game. This seems to be another area where there could use a little work with rising juniors Kaloma Cardwell, Andrew Nelson, Courtney Elder, and rising sophomore Brannan Thomas .
3. TE Battle. Rising sophomore TEs Landon Maggs and Pete Morrelli aren't expected to totally fill the shoes of the (now) Arizona Cardinal Adam Bergen, but it would be nice to see more about this battle in August. Not really a concern as much as a curiosity.

What to look for in August
1. The defensive line. After a terrific spring, the question seems to be, who will be the starters? In the spring, a solid front four did a good job stopping the running game without rising junior DT Royce Morgan. But who will get the starts at DE, with rising sophomores Matt Mohler, Paul Fabre, Tyrell Jenkins vying for the spot, along with rising freshmen Mike Murawnski and Joel Kriss?
2. The starting 5 on the "O" Line. 2 lineman spots appear to be locks - team captain and rising junior Adam Selmasska, and rising junior Tom Toth. But the battle appears to be on for who gets the final 3 spots. There are a lot of names - rising sophomore Jason Russell, rising freshman Jimmy Kehs, rising sophomore Jim Petrucelli, and rising sophomore John Reese, who would appear to be the front-runners. But it will be interesting to see the final 5 and how they gel together on the line.
3. Battle for backup QB. You would think rising sophomore Mike Probst would be the first backup option off the bench. But rising freshman Sedale Threatt has impressed people all last year on the scout team, and has continued to impress this spring. Can he crack the backup spot?

Stay tuned for the complete Patriot League spring report, coming up in late May or early June.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Remembering Lehigh's Battles With The Late Tubby Raymond

(Photo Credits: Delaware Online)

When I heard the news Tubby Raymond, legendary Delaware head football coach, died last week at the age of 92, two immediate memories came rushing back to me.

One occurred on October 16th, 1999, when Tubby had made a complaint to the local paper or radio in the run-up to Kevin Higgins' Mountain Hawks beating his Blue Hens on Delaware's homecoming, 42-35.

I have no idea if the quote even actually happened, but my recollection is that Tubby said that Lehigh had "St. Bartholomew's" on their schedule, and hadn't played anybody.  It was a verbal jab that many Delaware fans took with them to the stands to heckle the Mountain Hawk fans that made the short trip to Newark.

Up until that point, I had watched a bunch of Lehigh football games over the years.  I experienced their rise in the 1990s.  I enjoyed wins, and championships, and playoff victories.

But never had I felt a win so viscerally vindicating than the one over Tubby Raymond&…

Lehigh Wrestling Gets Superstar Treatment at PPL Center. Lehigh Football Needs The Same At Murray Goodman.

"We knew it would be nice," Lehigh wrestling head coach Pat Santoro said. "But it was even better than we expected."

Pat was talking about the reception his Lehigh wrestling squad experienced at Allentown's PPL Center this weekend, when a sellout crowd over nearly 10,000 people came to watch No. 1 Penn State grapple with No. 5 Lehigh in a collegiate wrestling event.

It was, by all accounts, something special to behold. 

"I thought it was really cool and an exciting place to wrestle," said Penn State wrestler Nick Nevills. "These fans were really into it, a rowdy bunch. It's a lot more fun as an athlete to wrestle in an environment like this. I'd say it was one of the most exciting times I have had in my career."

The sense of spectacle at the PPL center, though, puts a spotlight on what more can be done at Lehigh itself to make their athletic contests into spectacles.  It requires money to be spent and energy to be expended.  But the…

Troy Pelletier Hasn't Stopped Outworking His Rivals On His Journey To Professional Football

Many Patriot League football fans remember the 153rd meeting between Lehigh and Lafayette, one that ended happily for the Mountain Hawks.

They might remember the MVP performance of QB Brad Mayes, or perhaps the halftime speech by OL Zach Duffy that seemed to spur the Mountain Hawks to victory.

Or perhaps they might remember the spectacular single play of Mayes rolling right and finding WR Gatlin Casey in the end zone to give the Mountain Hawks a lead they didn't relinquish.  It was an incredible play by Mayes, who returns this upcoming year for his senior season, and Casey, who, having exhausted his eligibility at Lehigh, will be playing one more year at Middle Tennessee State.

As great as those individual moments are, though, they are not my biggest takeaway of that game.

Too many Lehigh people forget that Lehigh was down 31-21 at half, and that victory was no sure thing.  And they sometimes forget that so much of that victory came from the grinding of WR Troy Pelletier, deliver…