Army Holds Second Spring Practice

The Black Knights held their second non-contact workout on Monday morning.

The Black Knights held their second non-contact workout on Monday morning.

Feb. 13, 2012

Watch Today's Practice Report

WEST POINT, N.Y. - The Army football team held their second practice of the spring season on Monday morning inside the Foley Athletic Center. For the second straight workout, the offense and defense split up with one on the field and the other in the weight room before exchanging after 45 minutes. Monday's practice was a non-contact workout conducted in practice jerseys and shorts.

"We're introducing a couple of wrinkles we want to get done," head coach Rich Ellerson said. "Obviously there is a real fundamental emphasis entering the spring. The idea is to get everyone oriented in their position. There is a relatively short list of things we're going to try to accomplish in terms of our package, but it's going to be a great fundamental spring and a very competitive spring."

Monday's Practice Notes
•    The defense took the field for the first 45 minutes while the offense completed their weight room workout.

•    The defensive portion of the workout featured a lot of teaching. The defensive line worked extensively on their "get offs" and using their hands to ward off blockers. One station resembled a martial arts workout with the linemen's hands in constant motion.

•    The other positions focused on their assignment by diagnosing their key reads of the opposition.

•    Offensively, the skill positions began their workout with a circuit of drills designed to promote ball security.

•    Running backs Trenton Turrentine, Scott Williams and Tony Giovanelli were in red and did not participate.

•    The Army quarterbacks and centers walked thru the exchange at the snap several times at a slow pace before going full speed.

•    Jared Hassin, who started the Navy game as one of the deep backs in the wishbone, worked out at that position exclusively on Monday.

•    The Army offense did approximately 20 minutes of team work running skeleton plays against cones designed to simulate different defensive fronts. The last 10 minutes were run at a high speed with players sprinting to each station to get in some extra conditioning.

•    While there will be many changes during the spring season, the first offensive group running plays included QB Trent Steelman, FB Larry Dixon, RB Raymond Maples, RB Terry Baggett, WR E.J. Tucker, WR Pat Laird, LT Ben Jebb, LG Frank Allen, C Ryan Powis, RG Steve Shumaker and RT Derek Bisgard.

•    The second group consisted of QB Angel Santiago, FB Hayden Tippett, RB Jared Hassin, RB Stephen Fraser, WR Anthony Stephens, WR Michael Hudson, LT Tom Houser, LG John Szott, C Todd McDonald, RG Will Wilson and RT Daniel Whitaker.

•    Army's next practice is Wednesday, Feb. 15.

Monday's Quotables
Offensive Coordinator Ian Shields
(Ref.: the offense's goals for the spring)
"We need to continue our upward. There are areas to improve. It's never a finished product. We are fortunate to have a lot of guys coming back, but there are things to work on. We need to a better job in the ball security phase. Everyone knows we led the nation in rushing by a substantial margin, but we could have had even more and been more productive with the ball off the ground. There is room to grow in the passing game as well. We're never going to be the 1984 Houston Gamblers, but we can and should be more efficient throwing the football. That takes a collective effort on everyone's part."

(Ref.: having Trent Steelman back for a fourth year as the starter)
"It's huge. Trent has a ton of reps, and these reps are good for him. We have a lot of guys back healthy. We suffered a lot of injuries last year. That's football, but it certainly helps having a four-year starter at quarterback."

(Ref.: Angel Santiago and Gino DeBartolo going through their first spring practice)
"This is going to be a great time for Angel and Gino to grow in our system. It's a great opportunity for them to get a ton of reps. They haven't been through a spring practice yet, so this is going to be great for both of them. The arrow is pointed up for those two guys. They are good, young talents and they are going to continue to grow."

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