The fourth day of practice for UCF added a bit of uncertainty to the quarterback decision and…
UCF Practice Recap 8/6
Wednesday's practice showed yet again that Michael Greco seemingly has the upper hand in the battle for starting quarterback, as he continues to improve each practice. He was accurate, displayed solid decision making, and made some nice throws on the run. Joe Weatherford remained a bit inconsistent. He showed flashes of brilliance at times, most notably when he rocketed a ball into a tiny gap in the defense for what would have been a touchdown. Some of his beautiful passes though were overshadowed when he made some bad decisions by throwing into double and triple coverage.
Freshman Rob Calabrese showed his first signs of struggle with a college system today. He still showed off an extremely strong arm and but was a bit erratic at times. Little slipups are to be expected and the team seems excited to have him on board.
As today was the first practice with shoulder pads and some form of hitting, it offered a lot of insight of what the backs will look like touting the rock through traffic. Although it appears we will have to wait until full pads come on to see exactly who the guy (or guys) will be.
Ronnie Weaver looked solid and continues to leave the impression that he will be one of the guys to take a significant amount of carries this upcoming year.
Latavius Murray continues to impress, even with pads on. He runs hard, and also did very well in the blocking drills.
Brendan Kelly also looked very solid, he runs smoothly and possesses great vision for a back his size.
Brandon Davis also did well with the blocking drills and is extremely physical for a back his size. He might also make a contribution on special teams.
Brynn Harvey did run well today, but struggled during the blocking drills. He seems willing to make contact, but appeared to be a little off in the overwhelming heat. He should rebound tomorrow.
Coach O'Leary will not name a starter until later, but he did talk about the running backs after practice.
"They're all the same to me," said O'Leary, who stated that the coaches would know more after the backs put on full pads. "I think they've picked up the offense fairly well, I've been very impressed with their knowledge and just the athleticism, that's really what I see out there. They make cuts. Good running backs make cuts, you either have it or you don't have it."
Practice in General
It was a very physical day and there was a lot of intensity from players and coaches alike. The offense and defense both showed a lot of passion and effort during the 11 on 11 drills and the competition was entertaining to watch.
The offensive line opened up some creases in the defense and gave the quarterbacks adequate time considering the high level the defense has played at. The young backs took advantage of these gaps, finding the hole and snapping off some big gains.
The secondary continues to show up and play well as they keep creating turnovers and breaking up plays. Joe Burnett again had multiple interceptions today and looks like he's ready to solidify his status as one of the best defenders in the conference.
Senior safety Breon Rogers delivered the hit of the day as he knocked down tight end Willie Gaetjens, the hit fired up the whole defense and the fairly large crowd in attendance. Rogers' hit left the impression that this UCF team is ready for physicality to begin.
"I thought they put hats on people, which is what you are looking for. We are rolling in a lot of people at this time," said O'Leary. "I think it will be a solid group. They are going up against pretty decent people up front [in practice]. I've been pleased with that."
John Bernstein is a writer for InsideKnights.com, covering the UCF Knights for Scout.com. Feel free to contact him -HERE- with questions or comments.
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