WVSPORTS.COM West Virginia head coach Neal Brown press conference summary

Keenan Cummings

Fact Based and Wonderful
Sep 16, 2007
—West Virginia head coach Neal Brown said the team went inside today due to weather. Had a big team run Thursday and took off for the weekend. Had a normal practice today. They will divide them up into two teams for the spring game and let them play a game. Forecast looks beautiful and they hope people turn out for it. Each group got 50 reps with the ones and twos Thursday. Danny King had a really good week last week kicking off and field goals. Sean Martin and Zeiqui Lawton both impressed. The two bandits played really well Thursday with Lanell Carr and Jared Bartlett. Lee Kpogba is becoming more comfortable with the defense and Lance Dixon had his best day. Charles Woods has been consistent while Aubrey Burks had his best day and Davis Mallinger was good. Defense won the day, but Ja’Quay Hubbard put together a strong performance and Justin Johnson did well in the backfield. Sam James has had a strong spring from a mental approach.

—Brown will have a better evaluation of if they got done what they wanted to get done post spring. Situational awareness, understanding the clock and down and distance is something they need to improve on and they’re trying to put the quarterbacks in some tough spots.

—Defensive backs have really made a lot of strides this spring. You can see them steadily improve. Mallinger will stay at spear for now but he can bounce around and move to multiple spots and get some man coverage.

—Saint McLeod is feeling better and as far as when he can work out he ran. He seems to be improving.

—It’s where you’re at as a football team when it comes to the spring game. They’re going to split up into a game and get some one on ones work. They might not tackle the full time. This year it will be more of a true game to divide them up and put them in separate locker rooms.

—Harrell’s scheme is simple for the offensive players but is complex defensively. It’s his way of teaching the staff and they haven’t had many missed assignments. He has grown with some things that they’ve done in the past with RPOs and screen game. The nomenclature hasn’t been a huge adjustment and he even left some of the calls up front the same due to everybody returning. Very few communication errors and assignments.

—Brandon Yates has had a really unfortunate winter and spring. He came back and practiced after injuries but has played a lot of football. He did a nice job games 7-12 especially against Texas. He hates it for him because it’s no fault of his own but he was injured and hasn’t been able to go through the offseason the way he wanted to. They have high expectations for him.

—Hubbard is quicker off the ball and really going into the fall and he’s shed a bunch of the weight. Last fall he had good weight but didn’t have the strength.

—Polendey is impressive and is extremely physical and is aware who he is. A lot of credit goes to Travis Trickett. They wanted to get a tight end that could block and has done it. The thing that stuck out is he could play several different ways and is a good blocker. He is going to help them in the run game. They played a lot of 12 and 13 personnel at Colorado State. Has caught more balls this spring than he ever has at Colorado State.

—As far as his guys here there will always be a surprise or two when it comes to anybody leaving. They will have some one on one meetings and give feedback. Their eyes are where they have stated in the past.

—Last Thursday was big for the quarterbacks and they’ve been up and down. Garrett Greene is operating at a better level than he has and is throwing the deep ball accurately but has to eliminate the big negative plays. Goose Crowder it’s about confidence and the change of scheme probably affected him. Had his best day Thursday. So it’s a little fast. Nicco Marchiol it’s a really hard transition the first spring because the game is fast. You can see some real flashes but he’s also turned the ball over some. He is hungry and hasn’t repeated the same mistake very often which is a sign they’re spending a lot of time aside from what is required. They want to finish the spring that they’re more than capable.

—Bandits had their best day Thursday. Lanell Carr is coming on and Bartlett is making routine plays which he hasn’t in the past.

—Jarel Williams has great hands, understands how to use his body. Needs to develop but the quarterbacks really like throwing it to him. Excited about him. Liked how they’ve approached his daily work.

—Break the rule and play for both teams with the quarterbacks. They’ll tell us how it’s split up and reps at the position.

—The transfer portal has changed things but you have to hold guys accountable and hold guys to certain standards. It’s made you focus on retaining the guys you want to retain.