Defense Wins Thursday Scrimmage, 12-8 Lawrence Breaks Free for Another Long Scoring run
CB Trey Hobson had two interceptions Thursday
Aug. 18, 2011
Columbia, Mo. -
The Missouri Tiger football team held its second major scrimmage of fall camp Thursday morning at Faurot Field. The Tiger defense claimed a 12-8 victory in the unique scoring system, to give them victories in both scrimmages thus far in camp. Senior CB Trey Hobson had a pair of interceptions to lead the charge, including one that he returned 12 yards for a touchdown early in the day.
Hobson's pick six was the first score of the day, and it stood for a lengthy time as the only points scored by either side until junior TB Kendial Lawrence continued to build his case for the starting job, as he slid free for a 60-yard touchdown run that was very reminiscent of the two 60-yard TD runs he had in Saturday's first scrimmage. Lawrence would finish the day with 76 rushing yards on 11 carries, while he also caught a pair of passes for 20 yards.
The offense would tally three more short scoring runs, with all of them coming on situational drives which started inside the defense's 15-yardline or better. QB James Franklin scored from five yards out on a keeper against the #2 defense, while TB Greg White rambled in from 13 yards out against the reserve defenders. That was followed by TB Tyler Hunt's 11-yard touchdown run.
Franklin later led the #1 offense into field goal position against the #2 defense in the two-minute drill. Needing only a field goal for the simulated win, PK Grant Ressel calmly drilled a 50-yarder to take care of business. Backup PK Trey Barrow also made an 18-yard field goal to cap the two minute drill for the three offense against the three defense. A key play on that drive was a broken play where QB Ashton Glaser improvised outside of the pocket and found TE Stephen Drain for a catch and run that totaled 59 yards and went down to the 1-yardline.
On that play, Glaser avoided pressure and rolled to the right, and spotted Drain some 20 yards downfield near the sideline. The ball found Drain despite some traffic, and he shook one would-be tackle, got a block and rolled downfield before getting dragged down inside the one, for the play of the day.
Here are the official statistics from today's scrimmage...
"Well it's a battle, and we've got to evaluate this film. We got practice all next week and another scrimmage next Thursday, so I'd say it's certainly still very competitive."
On the defensive performance...
"I think again we did some good things. I think the consistency in the first drive - the number one defense went out - they (the offense) drove the ball all the way down field, and they stopped them for a field goal. I think they're doing some good things, we just need to be better. That's the message that we're sending to our football team - we've got to feel the urgency of getting better, because we're running out of time."
"It was another big play. We need big plays - we've got to have guys on offense who are capable of big plays. I've said it before, if you don't have an offense that has big play people on it, you're not going to be successful."
On the running back battle...
"They're all competing. On that play, you know he's (Kendial) got great speed and hit a crease, maybe if some of the other guys hit the same crease they could've made it as well. He (Kendial) is working hard and he's competitive, but we're going to play all three of those guys."
On Lawrence's improvement...
"He's experienced - he's played more now. He works very, very hard and he's a talented guy. He's very explosive - he gets to his top speed fast which is one of his assets. I think he's also getting a little confidence too."
On the four minute drill...
"On different thing we've done out here that we haven't done before is called the four minute drill. At the end of the game, the offense wants to keep the ball, get a first down, force the other team to use timeouts and use the clock. The defense is just the opposite. They want to get the three-and-out, get a timeout and get the ball back for our offense. It was the first time we ever did it quite like this and it was really good. I thought that was real good training. We've got to do a better job of getting the ball back when we've got a chance to win the game - and you can think of a couple games last year where that happened. And we've got to do a better job of not giving it back to the defense, or at least running a lot of time off and forcing them to use their timeouts before we give it back. I think that's a pretty good drill for us."
"He made a lot of plays today, I was very impressed with him. He's a great kid, got a great attitude and he's our biggest tight end - he's a big, big guy. Certainly without question he did some real good things today."
"They're talking about a Tuesday return for a lot of those guys. Jerrell (Jackson), we've got several guys out, (Travis) Ruth, some of those guys. Kenji's (Jackson) thrown into that too, we've got four starters out right now, not counting Elvis (Fisher). Hopefully we get them back soon. The medical staff makes all those decisions."
"Coach Pinkel tells everyone to go out and be ready, any position, no matter what string you are. I see the other guys and they're working hard and it seems like everyone wants to play, so that's a good thing."
On everything coming together for him...
"I would say it's part of learning the schemes and learning the whole offense to a "T" and doing everything you're supposed to do to get the job done."
On the process of improving in college...
"I guess you could say that's part of the process. It took me awhile - I worked all four years in high school and I'm in my third year here - but I'm just working harder and harder each year."
"I think the biggest difference is knowing that I'm in charge of our offense. I know I need to take charge, make plays, get the ball to the other guys and let them do what they do. So I think the biggest thing is just being smarter about it. Not taking hits when I don't need to, throwing it away and getting the ball to our guys."
On the shuffling of the offensive line...
"I think they're doing really well. I haven't really looked at them individually, because I know whoever they put there, they're going to do their job. Everyone misses a block every now and then, so if someone gets by it's not like I'm going to say, `man I've got to watch my left side now.'"
On how comfortable he is with the two minute offense...
"Actually, for some reason I feel better with that than normal because everything is fast-paced and I don't have to wait. When I'm out there it just feels a lot better than when we're doing our normal offense and everything is settled. I think I'm a little more comfortable with two minute right now, and hopefully that'll transfer over."
"He's looking incredible. He's my favorite running back right now. He's shifty, but he'll hit you. One day at practice, he ran me over. He can hit, and I like that about him."
On Lawrence's improvement...
"I think he's more comfortable, to tell you the truth. Last year he was just getting into it. This year, he knows he can run, he knows he can juke, so I think he knows what it takes."
On where the defense is as a unit...
"My personal opinion, I feel like the defense is great right now. I feel like we can get better, but right now I feel like we're looking good. I think we've come together as a family. Of course every team has talent, we have talent too, but we've got that bond on and off the field. We know each other, everyone feels good about the person that's starting feels that they're going to get our back. If the ball is in the air, I know that Kip (Edwards) is going to be back there. If they run the ball, we know the d-line is going to be there."