Wisconsin game notes out
The game notes for Wisconsin are out, and as always the depth chart is the most interesting. The primary news is that major changes are showing up in the secondary. The look is much younger, and some shifting went on.
At the start of fall practice, here was the alignment at CB.
Mayberry (Sr) Jordan (Sr)
Johnson (r-Jr) Nicholson (5Sr)
Today, the corners look like this:
Jordan (Sr) Smith (Fr.)
Johnson (r-Jr) Lewis (Fr)
Now, the safeties. At the start it was:
Crumpler (5 Sr) Dozier (r-Fr)
Perry (r-So) Waldron (r-Fr)
Today, the look like this:
Mayberry (Sr) Perry (r-So)
Dozier (r-Fr) Nicholson (5-Sr)
So, Mayberry and Nicholson are moved to Safety, and Perry is moved back into his starting role, which he had sort of relinquished while he worked on his academic issues. And taking their place at corner are two true freshmen. Coach had talked well about Antonio Smith, who is from Miami FL, and is supposed to be quick.
First question--are all the guys who moved out healthy? I'm glad for the competition, and I'm glad to see us not reflexively redshirting all true freshmen. On the other hand, it leaves us very young at corner. Let's see what our new DC can do.
I like Perry, and I'm glad to see him in the lineup. It will be interesting to see how Mayberry adapts to safety. Of course, with today's multi-receiver threats, it seems like the safeties can end up in pass coverage like corners a lot.
On offense, there's been a little movement. At center, Jonathan Culp has beaten out John Lanning to start. Coaches had been foreshadowing that for a while. More interesting is receiver. I think everyone had assumed Brandon Jones and Derrick Lett were the next generation. We hadn't seen much out of them in games, but we had real depth at receiver already. So we didn't know, but we assumed they could play, perhaps mixed with a little trepediation. And when fall practice started, they were in the mix, as was Kenneth Brantley.
In the meantime, Brantley is injured, and Marques Parks and Corey Partridge, both R-Fr, have slipped into the first string. Partridge has been awesome in the spring game and scrimmages I have seen (he's in the Magner mold), so I'm excited about that. I don't know too much about Parks. He's from McDonald, PA, which is south of Pittsburgh. I do love getting players from that part of the country. They are football players. He wasn't especially honored in HS, but you can't always tell from that.
We need to be deep at receiver, so let's hope this is a case of Partridge and Parks moving up past Lett and Jones, and not Lett and Jones sinking down below Partridge and Parks.
I spent a little time look at the distribution of the classes among the 53 players listed on the depth chart. Here's what I found:
5 years: 11
4 years: 16
3 years: 11
2 years: 12
1 year: 3
I've never looked at this before, so I can't tell, but it seems like that's a more even distribution than you might find in other situations. On the other hand, more than half (27 or 53) of the players are in their fourth or fifth year. Then, 26 of the 53 are in their second and third years.
Clearly, that class that is now in its fourth year was an absolute doozy. That was the last UM class to enroll here. The pressure will be on those next two classes to carry the tradition forward. We haven't been hurt by graduation yet during the Meyer/Brandon era, but next year could be a challenge. And with it being the first non-UM team, people could start to talk.
Friday, August 26, 2005
Wisconsin game notes out