In Terry Pluto fashion, here are some scribbles in my notebook from today's practice...
- David Harvey, Johnny Long, Stephen Fuqua and Jose Cruz each made spectacular catches. Everyone sees wide receiver as a weakness. I think the Zips are full of talent with Jabari Arthur, Jermaine Lindsey, Harvey, Fuqua and Long. Of course, most of that talent is unproven. Tight end is obviously solidified with Kris Kasparek, Merce Poindexter, Cruz, Doug Fife and Brian Flaherty.
- Running back is where I am concerned. Dennis Kennedy has shown he has All-MAC potential, but with Frank Berchie's transfer and Alex Allen's knee injury, a second-string ball carrier might be a weakness.
- Second-string quarterback should be a bit stronger. Chris Jacquemain and Carlton Jackson are still dueling for that job. From today's practice, it seems Jackson is sharper. Jackson threw a couple "wow" passes. Jacquemain's spiral was loose and defenders tipped away several of his passes. It's only the first practice I've seen all season, though, so I can't say with any certainty that he is the leader.
- J.D. Brookhart showed he was fed up with the amount of penetration the offensive line was allowing. Several times the green-shirted quarterback was "sacked." Brookhart, who wore a Greg Norman-style hat, let everyone in the five-county area knew he was unpleased by one play.
- Nate Robinson seemed to play sparingly.
- I attended camp with Buchtelite sports editor Dan Kadar, who knows more about college football than about anyone I know. After Kevin Grant laid a huge hit on the ball carrier, Kadar said with 100 percent confidence, "Kevin Grant is the real deal." Amen.
- I didn't see this first-hand, but Kadar said he saw Luke Getsy run an option play.
- I know the practice is closed to the public, but it seems to be an unenforcable rule. Sunday, the Zips practiced at Lee Jackson Field, with only that black fence blocking spectators.
- New associate AD Hunter Yurachek gave me a few more details about the coming season. He said the athletic department will try much harder to fill the Rubber Bowl, and not so much with getting fans to travel to road games. Logically, it's not worth devoting resources to send a pocket of 1,000 Zips fans to Happy Valley or Raleigh, N.C. Rightfully so, Yurachek understands the first priority is getting Northeast Ohio to care about the Zips.
- As camp continues, I will be unable to make it every day. If you go, feel free to add comments below.
- Kiki Gonzalez was nice enough to walk by and shake our hands. He's a classy guy who really seems to love life.
Sinisia Ubiparipovic showed he is ready to be a superstar Sunday, scoring three goals in an intrasquad scrimmage at Lee Jackson Field.
Freshman Rostand Erlichman scored the game's only other goal for the orange team. Ubiparipovic's blue squad won, 3-1.
- As a member of Real Salt Lake, former Zips defender Cameron Knowles earned some game time in the team's scrimmage against Real Madrid and David Beckham.