Aug. 12, 2011
By Jason Clay
CARBONDALE, Ill. - The Southern Illinois football team held its first two-a-day practices of training camp on Friday, as the Salukis continue to install their packages on the eve of the first fall scrimmage.
Head coach Dale Lennon told the team that they have been preparing for Saturday's scrimmage and it's time for them to show the coaching staff what they can do in game situations.
"We just got to measure where we are at," Lennon said when asked about Saturday's scrimmage. "There is only one way to see if what you are doing is affective, and that is to go live. We'll just be trying to find out the personality of the team."
The Salukis focused a good portion of Friday's practices working on team execution and getting all the responsibilities in the offensive and defensive schemes down. Lennon said that everyday is critical, but Saturday's scrimmage will especially be for evaluation purposes.
"We'll be making individual evaluations, offensive and defensive evaluations of schemes, and we'll just be trying to find out the personality of the team," Lennon said. "You can practice like we've been practicing to a certain level, but it is never going to be the same as a live setting. That's where you get the true evaluation."
Saturday's scrimmage, which is in Saluki Stadium and open to the public, will see the team run through scripted plays. Southern Illinois will be on the field from 8:15-10:30 Saturday.
Notes from Friday's practice
Redshirt freshman linebacker Jordan Poole provided fireworks right at the start of the morning practice Friday. On the first repetition during a kickoff return blocking drill, Poole leveled sophomore Luke Thuston on a clean block, drawing a loud roar from the team. Thuston was a good sport about it, as he got right back up and padded Poole on the back for the good play.... True freshman D.J. Cameron intercepted a pass during a blitz drill between the offense and defense in the afternoon session... Another true freshman, wide receiver Israel Lamprakes, has impressed the coaching staff with his hands. He's made a number of plays and his athleticism stands out on the field. Lamprakes has also been taking reps returning punts... Junior quarterback Paul McIntosh had a solid afternoon throwing the deep ball. He hooked up twice with Cam Fuller deep down the field and hit tight end MyCole Pruitt on a 25-yard touchdown pass... Boo Rodgers returned an interception for a touchdown to close out the afternoon session. Rodgers has been the top playmaker for the Saluki defense in the first week of fall camp.