Spring Football Practice Updates

Danny Karnik/Georgia Tech Athletics

It's been a few days (like, a week), so we're going to check in on how things have been for the Jackets in their first week of spring practice.

All info courtesy of the Georgia Tech SID and can also be viewed here: link.

Practice #2 -- Wednesday

Date: Wednesday, March 27
Practice: No. 2 (of 14)
Dress: Shorts and helmets
Practice notes:

-- The Yellow Jackets practiced for two hours under much-improved weather conditions Wednesday afternoon.

-- Tech will wear shells on Friday before donning full pads for the first time on Saturday morning.

-- The offense shined in 7-on-7 drills even though there were only two healthy scholarship players at wide receiver (Corey Dennis and redshirt freshman Micheal Summers).

-- Paul Johnson said that senior Will Jackson is currently playing OG, but could play OT as well.

-- Tech has two transfers who are eligible this season after sitting out last year under NCAA transfer rules - OL Thomas O'Reilly (Auburn) and QB Tim Byerly (Middle Tennessee State).

-- When graduate assistant coach Paul Rice left Tech earlier this year for a full-time coaching job at his alma mater, Yale, Johnson hired former Tech standout Steven Sylvester as a graduate assistant.

-- Sylvester, who was a part of Johnson's first recruiting class at Tech, played linebacker for the Jackets, but is helping coach the B-backs this spring.

Johnson on Ted Roof: "I think everybody has their own personality the way that they coach. As a player, he (Roof) was fiery, high-effort guy and that's what he'll expect out of his guys. I think it will be fun for the players to play for him."

Position battle: Sophomore Ryan Rodwell is the only experienced, healthy punter in camp as senior Sean Poole is recovering from shoulder surgery. Poole initially injured his shoulder trying to make a tackle against Miami last September, but held off on surgery until the off-season. Poole and Rodwell, who had identical 39.7 averages in 2012, should compete deep into August for the starting job.

Practice #3 -- Friday

Date: Friday, March 29
Practice: No. 3 (of 14)
Dress: Shells (Helmets & Shoulder Pads)
Practice notes:

-- The Yellow Jackets practiced for just under two hours in what felt like spring weather for the first time this year.

-- The players wore shells, moving a step closer to full contact, which will happen for the first time this spring at tomorrow morning's closed practice.

-- Tomorrow should be a busy day for sophomore RB Broderick Snoddy, who will practice in the morning, then run the 200-meters in at the Yellow Jacket Invitational, around 3:30 p.m.

-- As reported in the AJC this morning, walk-on Holland Frost has moved from quarterback to safety and will switch jersey numbers from 12 to 13.

Position battle: An interesting competition at A-back is taking shape as a number of players are battling to take Orwin Smith's starting job. Among those competing this spring: Deon Hill, Synjyn Days, B.J. Bostic, impressive redshirt freshman Dennis Andrews and others. Tony Zenon will also be in the mix when he returns in August.

Practice #4 -- Saturday

Date: Saturday, March 30
Practice: No. 4 (of 14)
Dress: Full pads
Practice notes:

-- Georgia Tech's first day in full pads was also its first of the spring inside Bobby Dodd Stadium.

-- The Yellow Jackets used most of the day in scrimmage situations and every healthy player saw action.

-- Sophomore quarterback Vad Lee had a short touchdown run and redshirt freshman QB Justin Thomas had perhaps the most electric run of the morning.

-- Junior B-back Zach Laskey rushed for a touchdown as well.

-- Redshirt freshman Lynn Griffin had a nifty interception and returned it for a score.

-- Former Yellow Jacket T.J. Barnes watched practice from the sidelines.

Position battle: Injuries to some players have created opportunities for others, especially at wide receiver where Anthony Autry and Travin Henry are sitting out all spring, and returning starter Darren Waller was in red today. That leaves redshirt freshman Micheal Summers, who has been impressive in the early going, and junior Corey Dennis.

Paul Johnson on Saturday's practice: "As I told the team, it was the good, the bad and the ugly."
Senior Jeremiah Attaochu on moving to defensive end from outside linebacker: "I like it. I want to be able to do both, so the move has been good."


I'm not sure about you guys, and maybe it's just the capitalist in me, but I love reading about position battles. In my eyes, it's good to know our guys are pushing each other to get better all the time, and that nobody has room to get lazy and complacent. Here's to hoping the A-Back position battle is a productive one.

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