Daily Focus – Quarterbacks
We circle back to the Quarterbacks as our position of focus as they benefited the most from the game like scenarios from Saturday’s Scrimmage. All of our Quarterbacks have improved greatly over the Spring so far and this scrimmage provided them a different test. In normal practice you practice situations, but nothing can duplicate the actual game like reps that they received Saturday. Jawon Pass threw and completed a large volume of passes Saturday. He was very accurate and efficient on 3rd Downs. He looked comfortable operating the Offense throughout the day. Malik Cunningham showed off a different skill set as he was live any time he ran past the line of scrimmage. He did a good job of showing off his athleticism and explosive play making ability. Sean McCormack also came in and completed a high percentage of his passes and continued to manage the Offense when he stepped on the field. All three Quarterbacks got invaluable reps that will help add on to the solid foundation that they have already started this Spring.
Coach Quote of the Day
“Offensively we moved the ball consistently today. Jawon did a good job of moving the ball down the field. His accuracy and timing were better today. Malik did a good job of using his athleticism and running the football. We made him live today so we could see what he could do with the football in his hands and it was impressive to see his running ability.”
– Nick Petrino, Quarterbacks Coach
- #4 Jawon “Puma” Pass – 6’4 231 lbs. – Columbus, GA – RS Sophomore
- #13 Clay Bolin – 6’0 202 lbs. – Lexington, KY – RS Sophomore
- #15 Sean McCormack – 6’5 227 lbs. – Darien, IL – RS Sophomore
- #3 Malik Cunningham – 6’1 185 lbs. – Montgomery, AL – RS Freshman
Coach Petrino’s Practice Notes
Saturday we saw our first game like situations of the Spring. We came in and ran the game clock and the 40 second clock. The Quarterbacks had to handle the Defense and the Offense but also had to manage the game clock as well. This also put pressure on the Defense to be able to handle the Offense’s tempo, no huddle and position substitutions. When you play a game like this it’s also good experience in working situations that come up as apposed to scripting them. Overall it was great experience for the Quarterbacks. It was also a good experience for the coaches working on sideline management and substitutions. As a team the work also tested our conditioning.
Defensively we showed a better understanding of how the packages are to be played. We did a much better job of timing up our pressures and understanding how to defend versus the run and pass in those packages. Overall we played faster and ran to the ball better which allowed us to have more three and outs. London Iakopo had a really nice interception that was returned for a touchdown. We still need to do a much better job of stopping the run and tackling.
The Defensive front continued to improve this week and again provided great pressure on the Quarterback. Derek Dorsey continues to make strides and be productive along with Tabarius Peterson who added production along the front as well. Gary McCrae and Jonathan Greenard showed tremendous effort in running full speed to the ball and making plays down the field.
PJ Blue and CJ Avery continue to stand out with their ability to play full speed all over the field sideline to sideline and show up at the ball. Their tackling ability will be a huge asset to this position. Dorian Etheridge continues to lead this group and newcomer Robert Hicks showed that he has the ability to make plays out in space as well.
Dee Smith led the way for the Defense in tackles on Saturday and Khane Pass showed solid production across the board. At the Corner position Russ Yeast and Rodjay Burns turned in solid performances.
Offensively I thought we blocked the run well and the Running Backs were able to get a lot of yards after contact. Our Quarterbacks did a much better job of getting the ball out of their hands on time. Our accuracy was better and the Wide Receivers timing of their routes showed much improvement. Probably the best thing the Offense did on the day was convert 3rd Downs, which kept drives alive for us. We still need to do a better job of creating explosive plays whether that is throwing deep balls or running after the catch. The Offensive Line needs to block movement better and both our Tight Ends and Running Backs have to protect the Quarterback better.
Jawon Pass improved on his accuracy and timing of getting the ball out of his hands, while Malik Cunningham showed up with his ability to make plays down the field with his feet. The Quarterbacks were forced to take charge and lead the Offense during this game like scrimmage.
Running Backs/Tight Ends
Production was all over the field at this position. Trey Smith and Tobias Little continued their solid Springs and Maurice Burkley showed up with multiple explosive plays to lead the Offense. Kemari Averett continued to be productive putting one of his better receiving performances of the Spring.
16 different Cardinals had receptions Saturday during the scrimmage. Dez Fitzpatrick led the way and finished his best week of practice this Spring. Tutu Atwell and Seth Dawkins continued to make plays and help the Offense get down the field. Emonee Spence and Corey Reed stepped up as well and played more consistent throughout the scrimmage.
The Offensive Line turned in a solid performance led by Linwood Foy and Mekhi Becton. Cole Bentley continues to improve inside in his work with Guards Lukayus McNeil and Kenny Thomas. All in all a solid days work in the trenches for the O-Line.
Standout Performers from Day 11
- Offensive Grinder – Offensive Lineman Linwood Foy
- Defensive Grinder – Linebacker Dorian Etheridge
- Offensive Showtime – Quarterback Jawon Pass
- Defensive Showtime – Defensive Back Khane Pass
*Grinder = Gives all one’s got every day, influencing others’ work ethic in the process
*Showtime = The specific time to display or execute a performance of great magnitude.
Off the Field Highlights
TreSean Smith – Defensive Back – Hamilton, Ohio
TreSean will be entering his sophomore season for the Cardinals in 2018. He is a graduate of LaSalle HS, where he was ranked as a three-star prospect (Rated the No. 1 safety in Ohio and 39th in the nation) and also excelled on the basketball court. TreSean was one of three true freshman to start on defense for the Cards last season and came away with two interceptions and 34 tackles. He is a Sports Administration major with a 3.86 GPA, and a member of the Athletic Director’s Honor Roll and a Red & Black Scholar.
Nathan Scheler – Offensive Lineman – Louisville, KY
Nathan is a redshirt-Junior who has appeared in seven games as a reserve offensive lineman over the past two seasons. In high school at Louisville’s St. Xavier, he was a varsity captain and named to the Best of the Bluegrass All-Star Team. At UofL, Nathan is a member of the Athletic Director’s Honor Roll, a Red & Black Scholar and was selected to the All-ACC Academic Squad. Nathan is majoring in Accounting and currently has a GPA of 3.645.
Petrino Family Foundation Update
It’s the week of the 4th Annual Spring Golf Classic. One of our biggest fundraisers of the year! But fundraising for who? Let’s take a look back at what got the Petrino Family Foundation started in the first place. In March of 2014, Coach Petrino with daughter Kelsey Petrino Scott stood in the lobby of the Children’s Hospital with a much anticipated announcement. That announcement was a $1 million pledge to build a new state-of-the-art Level 1 Pediatric Trauma Room. The Petrino family and the Children’s Hospital have a long history together.
During Coach Petrino’s first tenure at UofL, his family pledged to help the hospital build a family room for parents with newborns staying in the NICU. When Coach Petrino and his family returned to Louisville, getting back involved with the Children’s Hospital was a top priority. This time though, instead of just a pledge, the Petrino Family Foundation was established in order to not only help build the new Trauma Room, but also to help build an alliance with the Louisville community. The Petrino Family Foundation’s $1million dollar pledge to the Children’s Hospital will be fulfilled in 2020. It will be exciting to see what we can do next!
As always for more information on the Petrino Family Foundation please make sure you visit our website. www.petrinofamilyfoundation.org