The Flames are one week into their spring practice schedule, and we had an opportunity to speak with Coach Gill to get his assessment of the team at this point. Here are some of the main takeaways from that interview as well as the full audio interview below.
- The defense was very impressive on Saturday in the team’s first day of full pads. Gill says the defense had 10 or 11 turnovers during the practice session. It wasn’t just one or two guys that stood out, but multiple people.
- Gill says they are trying different things on both offense and defense. “We are experimenting with things on offense, in general, trying to see what we can do in the run game, certain pass concepts we’re trying to experiment with.” He says on defense they are trying guys in different positions. “Experimenting is what spring ball is.”
- Buckshot has improved in his understanding of the why, as Gill states. Last year as a true freshman, he knew the what, but now he’s focusing on learning the why. Gill also says he’s being more vocal as a leader so far during the spring.
- Mid-year enrollees Mason Cunningham and Tristin Schultz still have a ways to go in order to be effective college players. Gill says that Cunningham, the 6’0″ quarterback, still has a ways to go in learning the new terminology and learning how Liberty’s coaching staff wants things to be done. Gill says that Schultz has shown he has talent, but he still has a few kinks to iron out with his technique.
- Last year’s starting quarterback at the end of spring practice and into the beginning of the 2016 season, Stephon Masha, has been switched to running back. Coach Gill says he’s working exclusively at that spot as the staff feels that’s the best position for him to be productive.
- There’s been a few changes in the coaching staff’s duties since last season as offensive line coach Dennis Wagner was relieved of his duties at the end of the 2016 year. Aaron Stamn has taken over the OL responsibilities while Scott Downing moves to the tight ends and fullbacks. Ron Brown has moved from the WR coach to RB coach, and Kyle DeArmon was promoted to wide receiver coach. Gill says he likes the communication of the coaching staff so far.