Fall Camp Presser Transcript 8-22-13: Brady Hoke

Fall Camp Presser Transcript 8-22-13: Brady Hoke

Submitted by Heiko on August 23rd, 2013 at 1:53 PM

Bullets:

  • Shane Morris is the backup QB.
  • No decision on center or left guard yet, where Jack Miller, Graham Glasgow, and Chris Bryant are playing musical chairs. 
  • Michigan has a lot of receivers whose first names start with the letter "J."
  • Matt Wile will handle all kicking duties other than regular field goals and PATs.
  • Norfleet is the kick returner. Norfleet will probably be the punt returner. Norfleet4Life.

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Opening remarks:

"We have nine games before we open up and Team 134 gets an opportunity for their first impression. I think we've had a very good camp. We have two days left of camp, and tomorrow we'll start looking more at Central Michigan, scout teams, look teams, that sort of thing. The coaches have already been breaking down that opponent in the summer. Really the last couple days, [we'll be] getting back to it a little more at the stadium, [run] about the half the number of plays of Saturday's scrimmage. I thought we came out, played hard. I think we'll get some answers on some rotations or spots, if you want to call them that as we look at the tape tonight and keep evaluating through the end of camp."

Fall Camp Presser Transcript 8-22-13: Al Borges

Fall Camp Presser Transcript 8-22-13: Al Borges

Submitted by Heiko on August 22nd, 2013 at 2:38 PM

Opening remarks:

"These high chairs are not really built for me. Hrnggh. How's my hair look?"

Great. Bad news about Amara Darboh. How do you compensate for that?

"Well, fortunately we have some pretty good kids that can fill in, but I feel probably worse for him than anybody. The kid had an excellent spring ball and capped it off with a fabulous two-a-days. He was playing good. I feel bad because I really feel like this was going to be a big, almost maybe even a coming-out season for him. But he's got a redshirt, so I guess there's a silver lining, but I just feel bad for the kid."

Does this maybe put a little more pressure on Jehu Chesson?

"Well Jehu would do it. Joe Reynolds will be out there. Jeremy Jackson. We have some capable replacements, thank goodness. All those guys, not just Jehu, but everybody."

Will you consider any position changes to try to get some depth?

"Oh I don't think so. I think we're still okay. We can't lose too many more."

Are any of the freshmen capable at this point?

"No. No. Not really."

Not yet?

"No. Not yet. But we're not completing eliminating them, either. Not yet, anyway."

Fall Camp Presser Transcript 8-21-13: Greg Mattison

Fall Camp Presser Transcript 8-21-13: Greg Mattison

Submitted by Heiko on August 21st, 2013 at 3:40 PM

Were you pleased with your defense during the scrimmage on Saturday?

"I think there were some good things. I think we started off doing some real good things in the different situations that Brady put us in. The black zone, coming out, moving the ball. And then we had a kicking break and we did a lot of the kicking. I wasn't real happy with how we came back. It may seem like a little thing to a lot of people, but I relate that to coming out of the locker room at halftime. When you're a young team, all of those things have got to be addressed. You can't assume -- a veteran team, you'd know, 'Okay, let's turn it up guys. Here's the switch coming out.' You can see when you have a young team, they do a couple things good at times and then all of a sudden, you have to make sure they're hungry and they have to understand how to do it. They have to make sure they do their job every time."

Fall Camp Presser Transcript 8-21-13: Brady Hoke

Fall Camp Presser Transcript 8-21-13: Brady Hoke

Submitted by Heiko on August 21st, 2013 at 11:31 AM

Bullets:

  • Boo boos are the worst.
  • Fitz Toussaint has been named the starter at tailback. Act surprised.
  • Ryan Glasgow and Willie Henry are backing up Jibreel Black at 3-tech. Wormley is strictly a 5-tech, and Tom Strobel has fallen off the depth chart it would appear. 
  • Heitzman, Wormley, and Godin are rotating at the 5-tech.
  • Blake Countess is the nickel corner for the nickel package. That tentatively means Michigan is experimenting with a nickel package of Raymon Taylor (CB), Delonte Hollowell (CB), Blake Countess (NB), Thomas Gordon (S), and Courtney Avery (S).
  • Cam Gordon has been proclaimed the No. 1 guy at SAM. I've been strongly predicting Beyer to beat out Cam Gordon, but perhaps this will not be case. We'll see what happens once game day rolls around, but for now I'll concede that I was wrong.
  • In things I'm not so willing to concede, Hoke says that Ben Braden has moved to tackle (he and Magnuson are third in the tackle pecking order) yet remains a guard. While Braden certainly has the ability to play guard (and took snaps there in the scrimmage when Bryant was out), he has not been taking practice reps there for two weeks now, suggesting that Michigan wants him at tackle. Ultimately, none of this matters. It's Bryant or busted assignments.

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Opening remarks:

"We had our last two-a-day practice. I thought we ended that part of it, as far as the two practices a day, in pretty good shape. Did a lot this morning. Physical this morning, physical this afternoon. I like how the kids are coming out and how they're competing with each other. We have 11 days until we kick the ball off, so we have to make sure our timing, playing with speed, playing fast, playing physical like we want to -- we get all those things accomplished. I like the leadership and where we're at."

Do you wish the weather had been this warm earlier in camp?

"Yeah. It would have been nice if it had a little more heat, and I think we'll get some more this week, which will be good for us."

Have you made any personnel decisions yet? Center? SDE?

"Jack [Miller] and Graham [Glasgow], obviously. Chris [Bryant] didn't participate the other night, but he's back out there today. We played Graham at a lot of guard, so today we played them both in there at center a little bit more. I think we're getting closer."

Fall Camp Presser Transcript 8-16-13: Greg Mattison

Fall Camp Presser Transcript 8-16-13: Greg Mattison

Submitted by Heiko on August 17th, 2013 at 2:36 PM

How are you coming together?

"We're coming together. We are coming together. You know, every day is a work in progress because I think we're so critical and emphatic about doing everything right that when something gets corrected or something gets finally taught to these young guys, now you might spring a leak somewhere else. I guess what I'm saying is we're not ready to play today. I am really excited and really impressed with how, for the most part, we've come out every day and had energy and tried to get better. We've played with some physicality. i don't know that there's a position or a guy that you're looking to count on and say, 'Oh boy, that was bad.' You probably say, 'you've got to step this way' or 'your hands aren't here.' The next play they're going to do it right. That's what keeps you really excited about this group of kids."

Fall Camp Presser Transcript 8-16-13: Al Borges

Fall Camp Presser Transcript 8-16-13: Al Borges

Submitted by Heiko on August 16th, 2013 at 3:28 PM

"Heiko, what's up? How's it going?"

MGo: Not bad. How are you?

"Good ... I'm supposed to give a shout out to Devin Gardner. Don't ask me what that's about. So I did it, okay?"

...

"Well this is pretty easy."

How comfortable has Devin Gardner looked in practice?

"Pretty comfortable, yeah. Like I said last time, he's pretty confident in nature. He's been in the system now for a while. Understands what we want. For the quarterback, if he thinks like the coaches, which I think he's doing more and more of, it really gives him a chance."

Have you seen specific elements that he improved on over the summer?

"Oh yeah. Yes. Just understanding route structure, decision-making. All that comes when you play more, obviously, but there's a big difference in terms of just knowing where to go with the ball, timing of the cuts, how we work ... we work a lot on improv stuff because he's athletic, but we would do this with any quarterback. We work a lot on when we break contain or push the pocket, when something doesn't happen by structure and he has to make something happen. So we work more and more on that kind of stuff. We work on the receivers and where they're supposed to be and all that stuff. He's getting a really good understanding of that, too."

Fall Camp Presser Transcript 8-14-13: Brady Hoke

Fall Camp Presser Transcript 8-14-13: Brady Hoke

Submitted by Heiko on August 15th, 2013 at 11:34 AM

Bullets:

  • Derrick Green and Brennen Beyer have returned to practice. Green is a full go while Beyer is still limited.
  • The team will scrimmage at the Big House on Saturday.
  • A lot of position battles will be settled next week.

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Opening remarks:

"This is the 12th practice. We've really practiced pretty well most days. I think yesterday we didn't practice as well as we'd like to have. But I thought they came out -- we had good walkthroughs in the morning. We really did a nice job competing this afternoon. You know, you're trying to still put all the pieces together. Great competition at a lot of positions. That hasn't changed. We'll go about another week and then we'll start really game planning for central. We'll make some key decisions probably Sunday, Monday, Tuesday with where we want to be. A little more scrimmage situation on Saturday so that we can get a lot of guys in high pressure situations."

Fall Camp Presser Transcript 8-7-13: Greg Mattison

Fall Camp Presser Transcript 8-7-13: Greg Mattison

Submitted by Heiko on August 8th, 2013 at 10:34 AM

"First one of the year, huh? Here we go."

Here we go.

"Well it seems like we've been practicing for two months already and we've only had three. I don't know if that's a sign of old age or just the intensity of how we're going, but it's really good to be out here. It's good to be practicing again."

There hasn't been a whole lot of yelling. It's a lot more instructing. Do the kids seem to be on message?

"Well our style of coaching is teaching. And I think if you compare our staff -- I don't think a lot of times you have to do a lot of yelling. This team that we have right now is trying to do it right in every way. When a team's trying to do that, whether they're really young or making mistakes because they're young, as long as they're showing the effort that they are, there's really no reason to yell at them. You just have to correct them. When you have a young team, you have to be a great teacher. That's what our staff is really working hard to do."

So the effort is there?

"Yes. I've been really pleased. Now we don't have pads on yet obviously, and a lot of times what happens with programs, when pads come on, sometimes some programs slow down. I don't think that's going to happen with this team. This team seems to really really embrace and has bought into 'we must play as hard as we can on every play, and we have to get 11 bodies to the football.' When you watch practice with not pads on, we're getting 11 bodies to the football. We're getting really really good effort, so that's been positive."

<No pads. Nothing to see after the jump.>

Fall Camp Presser Transcript 8-7-13: Al Borges

Fall Camp Presser Transcript 8-7-13: Al Borges

Submitted by Heiko on August 7th, 2013 at 3:29 PM

"Is that salmon?"

Canteloupe. 

"Canteloupe? We use that as an audible color. How you guys doing?"

Good.

"It's been a while. Can't tell you how much I've missed you. You guys kind of sensed a hint of sarcasm, didn't you? Heiko! I made you a hero. Unbelievable."

MGoFlexesBicep.

Thoughts on Devin's maturity? 

"Yeah, he's doing a nice job. When you know that you've done it so long -- he's always been a pretty confident kid anyway, but now that he has a chance to kind of be the guy, I think he's taken the next step."

What's it like having two experienced tackles?

"Yeah, you know, when Taylor said he was coming back, that was a great, great day for Michigan and for our offense because breaking in a new left tackle is never fun. I don't care what level it is. But Mike Schofield, who doesn't get talked about as much but is really a good athlete. He can move. He was a hurdler in high school. He's got a lot of talent. Mike's played a lot. He's played guard, he's played tackle. I think he's kind of fit into a comfort zone a little bit with tackle, not to where he's complacent, but he's comfortable in the position now. He kind of had to relearn the position a little bit. He's been in the offense. He's been pretty consistent the first couple days and in the spring."

<Falsehoods galore after the jump>

Fall Camp Presser Transcript 8-5-13: Brady Hoke

Fall Camp Presser Transcript 8-5-13: Brady Hoke

Submitted by Heiko on August 5th, 2013 at 8:41 PM

Bullets:

  • Dennis Norfleet is now a slot receiver. God bless the broken road.
  • Fitz Toussaint, Chris Wormley, and Blake Countess are full go.
  • Jake Ryan spends most of practice running with trainers; no contact yet.
  • Freshman participation will be spotty until next Tuesday due to classes.
  • Most of this week will be limited contact (helmets and shoulder pads). First practice in full pads is on Friday.
  • Channing Stribling and Jourdan Lewis are among the candidates for punt/kick returner.
  • Fitz says that he will be the starting tailback for the season opener.

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I call this the "cameraphone" filter. Is Instagram even cool anymore? Was it ever cool?

Opening remarks:

“Ahem. Excuse me. I don’t have a real good voice, and it’s only day one. But it’s good. It’s great. It’s great to be out there, it’s great to be with the kids again. I like the competitiveness, the energy, which is something you would think they would have starting fall camp. Hopefully we can continue that consistently all throughout fall camp. I thought we moved around real well. There was great competition on both sides of the ball. I think we’ve learned how to practice with no pads on in a manner that’s physical. It was a good day, good start. We’ve got a long way to go, as we all know.

“One position change was we took Dennis Norfleet and he’s playing receiver now for us in the slot position, which opens up some things for him when he gets the ball in his hands. He’s got a lot to learn still from a formation standpoint and routes and option routes and all that. I think it’s going to be a good position switch for him and us.”

Can you talk about how Blake Countess and Fitz Toussaint looked?

“They looked great, and you’ll get a chance to talk with both of them, but they both did everything that we’re doing. They both looked good running around, speed and cutting ability and all that stuff.”

How important was it to see both of those guys today in camp?

“Well, I think it was a great start. The one thing we’ll be wary of is the grind of camp and two-a-days and all those things. We’ll be conscious about are we getting them tired, are they starting to favor one leg or another, all those kinds of things. But it was good to see them out there. Their teammates like it when they’re both out on the field.”

What were you looking for today?

“I think some of the things about the difference in some of the bodies. Willie Henry and Taylor [Lewan] we’ve talked about, but a guy like Blake Bars and [Kyle] Kalis and Quinton Washington – the big guys and how much better they look, how much stronger they are. The body fat ratio and all that. It was good to get the freshmen and watch them a little bit. They’re the ones who are still in classes for another six days, seven days, so it’s hard to get them there full time, but we got a little bit at the end with those guys, so it was good to see them.”

Did you notice the seniors coaching up the freshmen?

“Yeah, and that’s one thing we tried to do since day one. Your seniors have got to do a tremendous job. We coaches can’t see everything. We can coach a guy, and when we do that, maybe they get tired of hearing our voice, so when it comes from somebody else, and somebody else who has that experience, I think it really helps our coaching ability, and it also helps those kids.”

Was practice fast?

“Yeah I liked the tempo, I liked the structure of it. I like how we went from drill to drill and how the offense broke the huddle and approached the line of scrimmage and defensively how the kids got on the field and off the field.”

How was Shane Morris?

“You know, he took snaps obviously. Had some good throws and then had some throws maybe you’d like to have a better decision. But he’s everything we thought he can be.”

Derrick Green?

“Derrick had a couple runs in there. Some of those get here late because of class, but he had really good vision on a power play and did a nice job.”

When do you get those guys full time?

“Tuesday.”

Tomorrow?

“No. A week.”

Did you have Jake Ryan do anything other than watch?

“He runs with the trainers. I mean, he runs and he does some of our walk-through stuff. He’s acted like a really good coach when we’re doing some of the other stuff, but he’s running a lot with the trainers as they go through the rehab.”

How did Chris Wormley’s recovery go, and what are your expectations?

“Well, we have high expectations for Chris. He’s a great looking kid. I think he’s about 48 or 49 weeks from surgery, so it’s almost a year. At the end of spring he was doing everything. I think we’ve got a lot of great competition, and he’s part of that competition.”

How do Amara Darboh and Jehu Chesson look at receiver?

“I thought they both looked pretty good. You have [Drew] Dileo and [Jeremy] Gallon and those two, and Jeremy Jackson and Joe Reynolds, but they both had a good day. No one’s perfect by any means; we weren’t perfect coaching, and we have to make sure we’re doing that, but I like the two lengthy, rangy wide receivers. They both run very well.”

Do you sense hunger from Cam Gordon?

“I would say that he’s really, since a year and a half ago, he’s really done a great job when you look at how he’s prepared himself, how he listens, how he pays attention to everything that’s going on. His leadership has been really good. His physicalness and his strength and what he looks like is a lot different than a year ago. He’s competitive and I think he’s done a really good job. Does he feel more pressure because Jake’s out? I don’t think so because he’s just such a competitive guy.”

Do you look back at the run of injuries last year and question whether it was something you did or whether it was just a freak thing?

“I think it’s kind of a freak thing. I think we hit as much and maybe more the year before, and we went all the way to the Sugar Bowl before we got anybody dinged up. I don’t think so, and I know how much Aaron [Wellman] does with the different preventative things that you do, which I’m not an expert on, so don’t ask me what those are. He’s always done a great job with it. Some years you have it and some years you don’t.”

Will Devin Gardner be hands off for all of camp?

“Yeah. And we pretty much have done that with quarterbacks since we’ve been here. Every once in a while you’ll get a guy get a little overanxious as a defensive player or he gets his hands up and the quarterback follows through or he’ll knock an offensive lineman back and the quarterback follows through, so we’ll try and be as cautious as we can with all of them.”

Does it help that he has the experience of getting hit, so he knows the physical side of it?

“And I think a year ago, playing receiver a little bit, that helped. He had to go down and block, take on safeties and linebackers and all those things, so that helps a little bit.”

Will you give Shane and Brian Cleary more snaps?

“Well, Shane’s got to continue to prove it and so does Brian, obviously, but we’ve got to give Devin the amount of snaps that he needs, and at the same time we’ve got to see who the second guy’s going to be, make sure we’re doing a great job evaluating and make sure we’re doing a great job getting them the snaps that can be evaluated.”

Has Devin picked up where he left off?

“Yeah I think so. It’s hard after one day, though. I’m just excited that we took the field and how they came out. They went through meetings all day yesterday on administrative things, and really came in this morning and got the football part of it. [I liked] how they came out in walkthroughs this morning and how they came out in practice this afternoon.”

When do you put pads on?

“I think Wednesday we’re shoulder pads and helmets. Thursday shoulder pads and helmets. Friday will be full pads.”

Keith Heitzman played as a redshirt freshman. How much will that experience help?

“Anytime you have experience, I think that helps, even if it’s not in-game playing experience, but he does have some of that now. I think that helps. But at the same time those younger guys that redshirted, I think it will be really good competition.”

How will you determine the center battle?

“Well Darryl [Funk] will do a nice job. He’s always done a nice job with how he puts together snaps for those guys in practice. He’ll have every snap counted. He’ll have every drill where it’s a fair assessment for both guys, depending on which quarterback you’re with, what guard you’re with, all those things. It’s a great competition. It’s going to be a lot of fun to watch and let them fight it out.”

MGoQuestion: At the end of spring, you had Delonte Hollowell and Courtney Avery take snaps with the first team and Raymon Taylor with the second team. Did that reflect the depth chart, and will that carry over into this fall?

“Well, I think the depth chart’s even more stacked now. Ross Douglas came in the spring, so he’s got some good work. I think [Channing] Stribling and Jourdan Lewis, those guys – you look in that room with coach Mallory and those first year guys, it’s a pretty interesting room. The competition will definitely be hot and heavy at the corner position. Having Blake back is something that’s good for us, good for our football team, but they all will do a great job of competing.”

We talked about targeting in Chicago. Will you go over which plays that will now be illegal?

“Yeah in fact we’ll see the NCAA officials, they make a DVD. It’s probably on flash or whatever it is you do on a computer. But it will be watched tonight, talked about tonight. We talked about it last night. Championship teams don’t hurt themselves with dumb penalties or dumb decisions. So we have to be cognizant of all of them.”

Do you sense that Blake and Fitz are comfortable? IS there any hesitancy?

“No I think they feel great. I haven’t seen any, and haven’t since the end of spring. I know how hard both of them worked to put themselves in position to be able to play.”

You seem to be a little thin at safety. Are any of your veteran corners practicing at safety at all?

“No. You know, there’s enough safeties in there, too. Dymonte [Thomas] plays nickel, but we’re playing him more at safety, which is more of a true position for him. I think our depth at both of those positions is pretty strong.”

Are you going to be able to try out any freshman in the return game?

“Well, we’ll work all the other fundamentals, and we’ll work the fundamentals with them. Usually we start practice with specialists. We end practice in one segment with specialists because they’re all here on Mondays, Wednesdays. They’ll all be here.”

Who are you looking at for returner?

“Well, Jourdan Lewis is a guy. Stribling’s a guy who’s had work at it. From a receiver perspective, Jehu and Darboh are guys that have done it before, and I know they’re not in that same class. We’re kind of working six guys on the team with punt returns and some of those guys are kickoff return guys.”

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Players

  

Fitz Toussaint:

  • "I will be the starting running back on August 31."
  • Felt he was at 80-85% in spring. Now at 100%.
  • Got tackled by the previously-broken leg and felt fine.
  • Reputedly beat Gardner in agility drills.
  • Still has sweet dance moves.

Blake Countess:

  • Doesn't really anticipate a whole lot of new stuff from Greg Mattison with regard to the corner position, but "we'll see."
  • Is playing at both "left" and "right" corner. So no real distinction between field and boundary at this point.
  • Teammates have said that he looks "better than before the injury."

Taylor Lewan:

  • Carries around a milk jug full of ... water. Drinks a gallon and a half a day apparently. 
  • Doesn't care that players from other teams say that Michigan's run-blocking was kind of crappy last year. Says it's a new offensive line, and it's unacceptable for them to be bad at any aspect of line play.