August 9, 2008

Sun Devils sluggish in morning workout

It could have been the heat, or the fact that the Sun Devils practiced until 8:30 p.m. Friday night and then were back on the field 12 hours later, but whatever the reason, ASU's first morning practice of the fall got off to a sluggish start.

The line wasn't getting low. Routes weren't crisp. Guys were missing their blocks. And Dennis Erickson saw it all.

"We weren't running around like we need to," Erickson said. "They know that and I know that and you (media in attendance) know that."

Then he added jokingly, "It's like I told them, I'll give them today, I'll give them this morning, then that's the last thing I'll ever give them."

Saturday morning's practice marked the start of two-a-days for the Sun Devils. They will practice again this afternoon inside the Devil Dome at 4:15 p.m.

In all, ASU will have five days with two practices this fall and they all will follow the same format with an outdoor practice in the morning then the inside practice in the afternoon.

Although Saturday morning's practice got off to such a slow start, the energy level really seemed to pick up once the team went into 11-on-11 drills. They also spent time working live (full hitting) in the red zone, which marked the first time this fall they have done so.

Two offensive standouts from that segment were Jarrell Woods and T.J. Simpson.

Woods, who was working with both the first and second team, made several nice runs for more than five yards apiece including one where he absorbed a Ryan McFoy tackle and then moved the pile several extra yards. But perhaps his best play came on a 5-yard touchdown run during which he made a quick cutback and a Jovon Williams block sprung him into the end zone.

Simpson too was taking reps with the No. 1 and No. 2 offense and took advantage of his opportunity with three catches.

Other highlights from this segment of practice were: On the No. 1 offense's second set, Kerry Taylor made a reception of about 25 yards beating Terell Carr.

James Brooks stripped Ryan Bass then recovered the ball himself.

Kyle Williams caught a touchdown pass from Rudy Carpenter on a play where Troy Nolan's gamble of an interception attempt didn't payoff.

Then three plays later Carpenter threw another touchdown pass, this time to Kerry Taylor who made a spectacular grab at the back of the end zone to come down with the ball.

Third string D

In 11-on-11 drills the No. 3 defense Saturday included and all freshmen line with Lawrence Guy and Jamarr Jarrett on the ends and Zeb Togiai and Bo Moos (redshirt) at the tackle spots. Colin Parker, Anthony Reyes and Derrall Anderson were the linebackers. And in the defensive backfield Mike Callaghan and Angelo Fobbs-Valentino were the safeties with Deveron Carr and Josh Jordan at cornerback.

Quick hits

Eric Tanner was taking reps with the No. 2 defense in place of Jamarr Robinson, who missed the workout. Erickson said he was unsure of the reason for Robinson's absence, but it did not appear to be injury related or due to disciplinary reasons.

The first team field goal unit from left to right is taking shape with Jovon Williams, Wes Evans Adam Tello , Garth Gerhart, Thomas Ohmart, Paul Fanaika, Jon Hargis, Shaun Lauvao and Andrew Pettes[/db], with Danny Sullivan holding for Thomas Weber.

Keegan Herring (shoulder), Shaun DeWitty (hamstring) and [/db]Shelly Lyons[/db] (ankle) were all wearing the orange practice jerseys designated for non-contact players. Their participation was limited.

Brandon Smith (hamstring) was wearing shorts but was running around on the sidelines and doing agility drills by himself.

Mike Jones sat out the second half of practice with back spasms.

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