Edsall really pleased with D-Line depth in camp

August 19, 2014 | WNST Staff

Head Coach Randy Edsall

COLLEGE PARK, Md. –

Opening Statement:

“Another day for evaluation for us. Tomorrow we’ll do a scrimmage and then get a chance to sit down as coaches and kind of figure out where we are. We have some time over the weekend to decide where we are with all these positions and how we go into preparing for JMU next week. There are still a couple big days left for guys to be able to show what they can do so we are looking forward it.”

 

On Keith Bowers:

“Keith’s having a really good camp. Keith’s one of those guys that he’s got a good motor. He goes hard all the time. He’s gotten stronger. He’s one of the strongest guys we have on our team. He plays with a lot of energy.  I think the compliment that he and Darius [Kilgo] give our team is something that makes us better. Both of those guys will end up playing and doing certain things for us. Keith’s had a really good preseason so far.”

 

On the defensive line:

“I really like the depth that we have there. When you take a look at what we have at nose with Darius and Keith there and David Shaw is a young guy, but I like what I’ve seen out of him. At the left end you’ve got Quinton [Jefferson], Spencer [Myers] and Malik [Jones]. You’ve got depth and people that have ability there. On the other side you’ve got Andre [Monroe] and Roman [Braglio] and then even with Kingsley [Opara]. You like that and all you want them to do is keep developing and play to the best of their abilities and for each guy to keep pushing the other guy. When you do that, that gives you the kind of depth and I think they have the ability to be able to come out and play very well. I like where we are at from a defensive line standpoint and hopefully we stay healthy.”

 

On defensive back depth:

“The two positions I would like to have more depth would be at defensive back and offensive line. We’ve got J.J. [Jeremiah Johnson], Alvin [Hill], Will [Likely], Jarrett [Ross] and two young guys Daniel [Ezeagwu] and Josh [Woods] behind those guys. We’ve got to get those two young guys up to speed a little bit. Jarrett hasn’t really played. He played some special teams, but he hasn’t played as a corner. There is some depth there, but when you see the teams that we play and whom you have to play, you’ve got to get a lot of those guys ready to go. At safety with Sean [Davis] and Anthony [Nixon], backed up by A.J. [Hendy] and Zach [Dancel], now who’s the fifth guy going to be. Is it going to be Denzel [Conyers] or Antwaine [Carter]. That’s the thing that we’ve got to have try to come along a little bit more. Then on the offensive line you don’t have as much depth right now. It’s hard to have freshmen come in and play. Guys are working, but right now they’re not ready.”

 

On junior defensive back Anthony Nixon:

“He doesn’t say a whole lot. He is kind of quiet, but he goes out and he’s a little bit more vocal on the field. I’ve seen a couple times this preseason where he’s been a little bit more vocal and a little more energetic. Not to say he wasn’t energetic, but you see a little bit more of a vocal leader out there than what I saw before. He’s playing faster because he’s got another year under his belt. He’s a guy that can make all the checks and knows everything out there. He keeps everybody together and I’m expecting him to take his name to another level this year.”

 

On if senior A.J. Hendy or junior Zach Dancel could see time at cornerback:

“I don’t see them as corners. I don’t see that. I think some of the other packages that we have where we go to five and six DB’s there are roles for them there, but I don’t see those guys as corners.”

 

On what Hendy and Dancel bring to the table:

“Right now they’re the backups. Sean [Davis] and Anthony [Nixon] are the starters. Again when we go into other packages they could fit in as the third guy or as a linebacker type of guy from a coverage standpoint. Right now those two guys are just backups just competing and trying to make themselves better, but also pushing Anthony and Sean.”

 

On sophomore offensive lineman Michael Dunn:

“I didn’t think he had a bad day. I thought Michael had a pretty decent day like he always does. I think he’s been pretty consistent with what we’ve done. He’s a guy that works hard and is continuing to get better and somebody that we think is going to be a really good player. Where he’s come from, it’s what hard work is all about. He’s demonstrated with hard work that he’s put himself in a position to be a pretty good football player.” 

“He’s just a worker. You just see the continued development of him and what he has done. You just see it and you get it every day. He brings his lunch pail to work and he works hard every day. He works in the classroom. You can see that he works in the weight room. All he has to do is just keep getting better. He earned the scholarship because of what he did on the field. That’s what you see. You see a guy that goes out there every day and gives you everything that he has. He’s a guy that has ability. He has things that we still have to work with him on just like every guy that we have. The thing with him is you don’t worry about him. Every day he’s coming and he’s going to give you everything he’s got. He’ll do exactly what you tell him to do and he’s going to work to try and get better. That’s what you really like. That to me is what stands out to him.”

 

On what he told Michael Dunn when he was deciding to come to Maryland:

“I just told him the truth. Just told him that we’d like to have you here and that you’re going to have the ability to earn a scholarship based on what you do. Then we just let it all play out. Basically you just tell the kids the truth. If they’re one of your best guys and they earn it and deserve it because of where they are on the depth chart, then it’s easy for you as a coach to day you’ve earned this scholarship or we’re going to put you on scholarship. The neat thing was to see his reaction. He couldn’t believe it. I’ve had a lot of promise with guys that have come in as walk-ons wherever I’ve been. Guys that have earned scholarships and guys that became captains and guys that become fourth round draft choices. To us it doesn’t matter if you were recruited or not recruited, if you’re a good player and you’re contributing you have the opportunity to earn a scholarship. We don’t worry about if they’re walk-ons or preferred walk-ons or recruited guys, everybody is treated the same.”

“That’s why we wanted him to come here. At that point in time he wasn’t big enough and we didn’t have scholarships to give. I think that is the art of evaluation and that is the art of recruiting. Not everybody is going to blossom at the same time and not everybody is going to be on a list as a four-star or a five-star. There are those that aren’t those guys coming out of high school who end up being better players than those guys who are four and five stars. That’s part of the evaluation process that you evaluate kids and you see and gain and understanding of how much they can grow based on their character and all those things. That’s why you’ve got to take a look at just about everybody.”

 

On Sean Christie and Evan Mulrooney:

“Sean’s going to have surgery on Friday. Evan had more tests done yesterday and a CAT scan done yesterday. We’re going to see where that’s at, but no concrete information on when he could get back out there.”

 

On the running back competition:

“It’s pretty much the same as what we’ve said all along. Brandon [Ross] is No. 1 and then Albert [Reid] and then Wes [Brown]. We are going to continue to look at it and continue to evaluate it. We’ve got a couple more days here and we’ll see where it all shakes out. Those guys are working hard and doing a good job. Hopefully they can continue to do that.”

 

On how he feels about his team:

“I feel good about where we are. We are accomplishing the things we want to accomplish here in the preseason and what we’ll do is we’ll take these next few days and do a little bit more evaluation and really sit down and take a look and see if there is anything that we have from situations or injuries that might make us alter certain things. I feel good about where we’re at in terms of what we’ve been able to install and I feel very good about where we are in terms of our evaluation process in terms of who we think are the top 70 guys are and roles that guys can fulfill. We’ll find out a little bit more today andtomorrow and then get it finalized over the weekend.”

 

On if it’s tough to get down to the top 70 players:

You do and that’s what you want. You want to have those tough decisions to make as you narrow it down and as you’re getting there. That’s the thing. The more competition we have, the better we’re going to be. We’re not where we want to be yet, but we’re getting a heck of a lot closer now than where we were before.”

 

On Matt Robinson and Jeremiah Johnson:

“Matt’s had a great preseason; leadership, talking, everything. J.J’s got a lot of his confidence back now. We really didn’t treat them any different. They missed some things. J.J. had to get as many reps as he could because he didn’t play last year and he didn’t play in the spring. We didn’t treat them any differently.”

 

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