Day by day and practice by practice, Texas State inches closer to its season opener at Southern Mississippi. Kickoff is scheduled for 6 p.m. on Aug. 31, which is 24 short days away.
Before the Bobcats look for another upset of a team from Conference USA (Texas State is currently an eight-point underdog), they must hone their skills in fall camp.
Here is the practice report from Tuesday’s offering.
- Freshman wide receiver Demun Mercer is going to be special. Mercer had another great catch; this time stretching out for a throw from fellow freshman Tyler Jones. When I asked sophomore wide receiver Brandon Smith about some of the new wide receivers, Smith praised Mercer for his length and speed.
- Speaking of Jones, he finally tapped some of his talent. Jones escaped pressure several times during padless 11-on-11 drills and broke away from several defensive backs. He is one of three quarterbacks to not yet throw an interception (at least when I’m watching) — seniors Tyler Arndt and Duke DeLancellotti are the others.
- Yes, Fred Nixon is still at quarterback — and he threw an interception (Germod Williams).
- Arndt and DeLancellotti still are the most consistent quarterbacks. Redshirt freshman Jordan Moore just needs to work on his accuracy when he throws deep, and to the sideline.
- Junior cornerback Craig Mager matched up against most of the top wide receivers during one-on-one drills. Can’t help but like that out of the team’s top cornerback. Mager didn’t allow a catch.
- Sophomore offensive lineman Adrian Bellard slimmed down a bit (listed at 310 pounds) and he’s noticeably quicker, which should help him get to the second level more in 2013.
Head coach Dennis Franchione on the new players: “They’ve absorbed a lot. They’re not very proficient at it, which is easy to understand, but they’ve been impressive with how much they’ve accomplished. I pointed out Germod Williams after practice. He knows his stuff back there in the secondary and got a pick today. He’s communicating and making all of the right calls and doing the right things.”
Franchione on true freshman wide receiver Brice Gunter: “He is pretty far along. He is athletically gifted and been here all summer. Really, the old guys took him under their wings in June when they were throwing and his understanding of what he’s doing is pretty good.”
Sophomore wide receiver Brandon Smith on why he chose to switch numbers (No. 5 from No. 81): “I wanted No. 4 — which was my number in high school — but Jordan Moore got it before me, so I decided on 5.”
Smith on wearing single digits as a wide receiver: “I’m ready for the spotlight. I want to go out here and make a name for myself.”
Freshman quarterback Tyler Jones on what would earn him the starting job: “For any of us, it’s just going to be perfection. That’s what the mindset should be for all of us and I think it is. All of us are hitting the ground hard and trying to perform at a high level.”