Offensive Coordinator Shawn Watson addressed the media this evening. He spoke on a mirage of things, giving extensive answers to many questions. Louisville has just finished two-a-days and will begin Ohio game prep next week. We’ve got a lot to run down here, so let’s get right to it.
-Expect to see a fun playbook this season from Louisville. Watson said Louisville has been able to expend offensive packages to places ‘we haven’t gone before’. He pointed to the talent and depth of the Wide Receiver position being the key reason why.
-Shawn Watson had no knowledge of the Louisville-Kentucky game move, before he was asked about it tonight. He stated that those games at that point of the season are ‘awesome’, liken them to Colorado-Nebraska when he coached at Nebraska.
-Watson seemed to be worry free about the offense, generally as a whole. Obviously the biggest concern of the Louisville team has been the offensive line. Watson says they’ve ‘done well’ and says the ‘guys are on target’. Here’s the full transcript of his comments on offensive line.
“They’ve done well. We’ve been able to work several different combinations. At this point now, we feel like we have those guys on target, and who we’re gonna play with. I like our first group of guys. They have done a really nice job. We’ve had a really good battle at right tackle between Nacho [Garcia] and Ryan Mack. So that’s been a healthy battle.”
-It’s safe to say that Michael Dyer will get plenty of opportunities this season for Louisville. One of the main concerns about Dyer when he arrived was how quickly he’d pick up the playbook. He is still learning that playbook, but seems to be rapidly improving his knowledge. Watson had nothing but positives to say about him , even stating that he had ‘no concerns’ about his progression . He said the things he does on the practice field can be ‘breathtaking’ times. Here are his comments on the running back battle:
“You put any of the three in there (referring to Dyer, Brown, and Perry) and with Corvin [Lamb], he’s had a really good camp too. Corvin [Lamb] sometimes goes under the radar, with those three guys with size and speed; he’s a little bit smaller but he’s the fastest of all of them. He’s competing right alongside the other three. It’s been a really competitive camp at that spot for time on the field.”
“You’ll see all three of those guys on the field. And I know Corvin [Lamb] will be on special teams, we’ll use his speed as a return specialist. I’d also be surprised if he doesn’t show up on nickle either, because of his speed.”
Expect to see Michael Dyer used in the I-Formation for Louisville this season when he hits the field:
“He’s done really well. He’s transitioned into our offense very smoothly. Basically because of his maturity. He’s a mature guy, he’s gotta plan. He’s always in Coach [Kenny] Carter’s office between practice. He’s worked at it really hard. In the classroom, getting extra time; he’s shown it on the field. The amazing thing to me was that he had never ran from the I-Form before. That guy, I’ll put him in the eye and let him run back there. He’s dynamic.”
-To my surprise, Kai De La Cruz has a ‘slight edge’ over Matt Milton in a battle for the X WR spot behind Devante Parker, according to Shawn Watson.
RG Kamran Joyer is still not practicing with the Louisville Football Team (Right Knee). He’s been out for nearly a week. Watson said it will be a ‘week-to-week thing’ but called him a ‘fast healer’, and obviously after his unexpected Sugar Bowl return; he’s right.
I spotted WR Damian Copeland after practice. He had full pads on, no bandage on his leg and was showing no noticeable signs of injury.
-At LT, Chris Acosta caught the eyes of many Louisville fans when he was spotted running with the 1’s at Louisville’s Fan Day/Open Practice/ Whatever you want to call it. This evening, Watson called him the biggest ‘surprise of the camp’ on the Louisville Football team, saying ‘he’s earned his time and we’re gonna play him’. Seems that folks may want to get used to seeing him on the field. Here’s a full transcript:
“Chris Acosta has really come on. He’s been a really solid player for us. So much so, that we feel like we have to play him. He’s well signed, he’s playing his best football. With him coming around and ‘Kam’ [Joyer]. It’s been a good mix..”
-Damian Copeland is being credited for progressing James Quick’s knowledge of the playbook, mostly because of the work the two have put in this Summer. Watson on James Quick: “He’s gonna play a lot of football for us this year.”
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