The second practice under Paul Haynes ran much smoother than the first. It was crisp, fewer balls hit the ground and the players know where to go. Haynes was again in a plain gray KSU sweatshirt and shorts. Above is a video of Haynes addressing his team on Day 2.
Much of the focus, and where the most sorting-out needs to happen before week 1, is along the offensive line and at the quarterback spot. David Fisher, a senior JUCO transfer, hasn't gotten off to the best start. It's only spring practice—but many of Fisher's throws today came in low and/or behind his receiver, especially during a drill that put the QBs on the run. In that drill, he threw three passes to his receiver's feet and then overcompensated and overshot his next throw. Sophomore Colin Reardon was a little cleaner but not perfect. Later, in a 7-on-7 drill, Reardon was picked off on a long post pattern by corner Malcolm Pannell, who held onto the ball after getting colliding with two safeties. Incoming freshman Nathan Strock, who will be in camp in the fall, might be the darkhorse to win the starting job, he of Tri-Valley High School.
Haynes again reiterated that he's looking for a game-manager, a field general, in his quarterback rather than a guy who'll go out and try to win games with his arm. "Just manage the game," he said. It looks like arm strength might take a back seat to staying clean, accepting the check-downs and not making the big mistakes.
Haynes will have to find replacements along the offensive line for departed starters Brian Winters (left tackle), Josh Kline (left guard) and Kent Cleveland (right tackle). The two returning starters are Phil Huff, who will still be at center, and former Indiana transfer Pat McShane, who will move from right guard to left guard. Anthony Pruitt has moved from defensive tackle to the offensive line, and has a good chance to be the right guard. Reno Reda, who is said to have put on 20 pounds over the winter, and Terrell Johnson could be the front runners for the two tackle positions. But as Haynes said on Thursday, not much will be truly sorted out or even set in pencil during the spring. Huff said Haynes likes his lineman to know all five positions, so there could be a lot of shuffling to be done between spots along the line.
Goode not great
Wide receiver Tyshon Goode is still sidelined with the hamstring injury that robbed him of last season. Goode has spent the first two days of practice off to the side doing light footwork drills. His return to the field this spring remains in question.
Dri Archer and Trayion Durham still look every bit of the dual 1,000 yard rushers they were last season. Archer has a busy practice, switching from running back to receiver to returning punts. He also made a nice catch on a ball thrown behind him on a crossing pattern during 7-on-7s. Behind those two will be Anthony Meray and Tristin Boykin. Meray probably has the inside track as the No. 3 running back but Boykin had a great practice on Thursday. He found a couple holes and reached the second level, and on one run went to the right side of the line, changed direction and turned the corner along the other side of the field.
Play of the Day
Receiver William Woods—easily identified by his dreadlocks—found a soft spot in zone coverage during 7-on-7s. Fisher's throw was low and to his left but Woods turned himself around, dove and brought the pass in with three defenders around him.
Quote of the Day
"Yeah I think it's gonna be pretty exciting. One of the best things about offensive lineman is pulling. So being down the field with Trayion and Dri will be fun, just trying to go down the field and kill somebody."
- Anthony Pruitt, on switching to the offensive line and blocking for Archer and Durham