Spring Outlook: Freshman Class

Submitted by BRBLUE on April 3rd, 2014 at 6:52 AM

Here is a nice video on the Early Enrolees. Looks like Canteen has a nice first step and Bryan Mone is going to be a beast in the middle! 

Edit: video wont embed. here is the link: http://vimeo.com/90811217


Bo Nederlander

April 3rd, 2014 at 7:11 AM ^

Someone already posted this in another thread. But yeah, they all look pretty good. Canteen though...DAMN that boy is quick! That pass from Speight was money too. 


April 3rd, 2014 at 7:31 AM ^

I liked the zone blocking drill that they showed for the Mason Cole bit. 

Freddy Canteen looks like he's playing chess while everyone else is playing checkers. He looks like he's running at game speed while everyone else is running at spring practice speed. I can see why people are impressed with him and the hype matches the visuals. Also, Jungle Beats.


April 3rd, 2014 at 8:24 AM ^

Can't wait to see these guys in person on Saturday! I've already got my tailgating stuff waiting for the long car ride that morning.... just a couple days of work and I'm on my way! I think I'm the most interested in the blocking schemes and the offensive line in general. We need to dominate lesser teams on the LOS and really compete with the elite ones. It's all about the line, as was painfully apparent last year. Go Blue!


April 3rd, 2014 at 9:44 AM ^


We are due for a "break" in the oline category (not the "ortho" type of break either).

I think that is the most frustrating thing about since Hoke arrived. I've been so excited for the smash mouth football that was coming here. Then, the huge Oline recruiting hauls....crickets chirping in background....still waiting.....ughhhh. C'mon. LET'S DO THIS ALREADY!!!!

I know. I know. It takes time. I'm not that hard to please. But give me a glimmer of hope that these awesome oline recruits will meet our expectations sometime soon. I've always felt like "if you build it, they will come." "It" being the oline that is. If we develop that, and lay the foundation, eventually everything else should FALL...RIGHT...INTO....PLACE....RIGHT?! Please???

I just want to be held. Hold me.


April 3rd, 2014 at 7:01 PM ^

Here is the glimmer of hope:  Outside of Blake Bars and Chris Fox, the latter possibly due to injury, we have heard positive buzz about every OL signed in the last 3 years, and a handful of them have already seen PT.  Very few OL look really good as RS frosh (even Lewan took a while before he looked like a sure starter) but the amount of reps our young guys have under their belts so far certainly helps.  If guys like Kalis and Magnuson don't look better this fall than they did last fall, that would be a cause for concern, but with the competition we have at each spot, the guys who earn the spot will have had to work hard to get there.  


April 3rd, 2014 at 10:07 AM ^

For what its worth....      I began my college career at Michigan in 1988, the same year as Steve Everitt, another Floridian, and we were decent friends all five years....   and note that Steve was roughly the same size as Cole, and was a madman on the field, a total bad-ass.  I recall that early on as freshman they were quite high on him, too, and its sounding the same with Cole....  so before all of you panic, I'm not, because I knew Steve and I knew that despite being a true freshman, it was just a matter of time that he was our best lineman... and he was.  He is the only player I recall ever hearing Bo saying that he was "impressed by" Everitt's play.  Off the field, Steve was melancholy, but on the field a total nightmare...  Cole, at first impression, looks like another one.     So be happy, Highlanders....  this news is gonna be good.


April 3rd, 2014 at 8:49 AM ^

I just love the way Speight throws the ball. He's so smooth. The ball comes out nice with a tight spiral. He can really spin it. I have high hopes for him.

Space Coyote

April 3rd, 2014 at 8:53 AM ^

I learn I'm an idiot that some how manages to pronounce every name incorrectly. Speight? I've been saying it like spite. Is it Mone like moan, or Mone like mon-ay? If they someone tells me it's pronounced Ha-riss instead of Har-is, I won't be surprised.


April 3rd, 2014 at 8:53 AM ^

But AJ Williams has caught more passes in this spring's video snippets than he has in high school and college combined. If you can make an assumption based on this very little evidence (you can't, but let's anyway), I'd say the coaches are trusting him more because he's not dropping everything.  Improvement from this year would be incredible - even going to average B1G TE in catching and blocking. 

And I love seeing RJS get in the backfield and make a tackle.  He looks to be at SAM (coming off the edge)?

Yeah, that Canteen route looked pretty impressive.


April 3rd, 2014 at 9:04 AM ^

I know it's spring and I know these are suppose to make us excited over our newest class of Freshman world-beaters, but does anybody wake miss the good-old-days (say 1970 through about 2007) when talk about Freshman was a huge exception to the rule? While I'm glad Mason Cole looks good an all that I dread the thought of a true Freshman OL because of what it means in regards to our depth.

To me these posts are more frightening than reassuring.


April 3rd, 2014 at 9:46 AM ^

And recruiting wasn't as big.  Harris/Mone/Canteen et al are top of mind to most serious fans, given they've followed their recruiting sagas and star ratings for year or two. Dedicating one day of video to those players makes sense, given their current notoriety. 

That would be true even if none of these guys see the field, which is still a possibility.


April 3rd, 2014 at 7:06 PM ^

Exactly.  If I'm not mistaken, Kevin Grady was the first EE at Michigan, and that was in 2005.  So until then, there were literally zero freshmen at spring practices.  

And like you said, recruiting is big now.  Before, writers didn't talk much about incoming recruits aside from the really big names like Fargas, Henson, etc. because none of the readers would have known who they were.  I hadn't heard Chad Henne's name until I saw him run out onto the field his first game.  But I knew Shane Morris's name 2 full years before he enrolled.  That plays a big role.


April 3rd, 2014 at 12:52 PM ^

At that point we also had decades of coaching continuity.  It will be another few years with this staff before we have real roster stability.

I do recall freshman Steve Smith under center in 1981 so the good old days aren't always quite as rosy as they may appear in hindsight.


April 3rd, 2014 at 10:34 AM ^

it was total lack of assignment awareness.  On running plays, we'd have pulling guards routinely run past unblocked defenders, leaving them for someone else who never came.  On passing plays, we literally would have been better off having them take one step backward and lock arms.  At least that way they would have been an obstrucion to objects passing through.  Most of the breakdowns were due to two players doubling somebody and letting a LB - often to the LB's surprise and delight - run right through and ram his helmet into Gardner's ribs.

I'm not saying Lewan or Schofield won't be missed, they will.  We'll have edge rushers beaten on the regular this year, where it was uncommon last year.  But if they shore up the assignment football, they'll have corrected the biggest problem from last year - of which Lewan and Schofield (through no fault of their own, I blame coaching) were just as culpable as the others.  


April 3rd, 2014 at 5:18 PM ^

How much of this is just a new era of college sports increasing our appetites & then satisfying them for more information?  

1)  Since the 1980's and 1990's, major college sports generally have exploded in popularity due to either subsidies and/or lucrative media contracts.  Bigger stadiums, more media coverage, more fans, etc. As the industry grows, the cottage industries spring up around them.

2)  Cable TV and the internet has ushered in the age of the "24 hour news cycle."  I think the same has happened with sports media as well.  Back in the day, I would plop down an obscene amount of $ for just for those crummy glossy Athlon sports magazines that would come out in July or early August giving a synopsis of each team & projected rankings.

I needed my fix.

Although I didn't participate, I'm assuming there were better quality private subscription services that would send out a weekly or monthly "insider" newsletters via snail mail or Fax.

But now we've got high def VIDEO, social media, instant communication, and these blogs. Some of us degenerates probably check these blog sites ever frew HOURS to devour the smallest tidbit of information.

So I guess all I'm saying is I'm not surprised that we spend time looking at/talking about new recruits or freshmen more than a few decades ago.  The information is available, and until the real season starts, we've pretty much sucked the marrow out of any remaining tidbit, analysis, or gossip about most of the established players. 

Does it signal that our program is unhealthy becasue we are constantly focused on the horizon (new recruits, prospects, freshmen)?  Maybe.  But my guess is the fan bases of Alabama and Florida State are similarly obsessed with their own team futures as well.