KENT: Kent State cut practice very short on Tuesday following a day of two-a-day practices on Monday. It is the second time in five days the Golden Flashes enjoyed a rest.
The players spent time in the film room, behind the scenes — something junior tight end Tim Erjavec welcomes. After all, Erjavec has never been one to look for the spotlight anyway.
Coming out of Lake Catholic High School, he walked on at Kent State as a freshman trying to make the team as a linebacker. Then-KSU coach Doug Martin came to Erjavec and explained how playing time could be had as a tight end. Erjavec, who did whatever was needed at Lake Catholic by playing offense, defense and special teams, was happy to listen.
“Camp came around my freshman year and Coach [Martin] sat me down and said that they were short at tight end and there’s an opportunity for me to play,” Erjavec said. “I took the opportunity and ran with it. I had an opportunity to earn a scholarship so I was excited to get after it.”
It wouldn’t take long. Martin awarded Erjavec a scholarship midway through his freshman season.
Erjavec is a hitter whose primary role was in blocking situations (at tight end and fullback), while Justin Thompson rotated in for passing downs. Now Erjavec is the most senior player at his position and is more than happy to take on an expanded role, should coach Darrell Hazell call his number.
“This year, I feel like my role is both, really,” he said. “Justin Thompson did a bit more with receiving. This year, I have to fill his shoes and be a receiver and a blocker. It’s fun to go out there and get a little of both worlds.”
Erjavec says his understanding of the offensive scheme is night-and-day better than a year ago in his first camp under Hazell.
“I feel like I know the offense like the back of my hand,” he said. “Now it’s easy, I just go out there and play and know what I’m doing. I don’t have to worry about what I do or don’t do on this play or that play.”
Darius Polk’s 2011 season was a season of firsts for the cornerback, who is now a junior.
His first sack came against Ohio. His first start was against Northern Illinois and his first interception came against Bowling Green. After the graduation of starting corner Josh Pleasant, Polk is in line to be a regular in the secondary, health permitting.
Polk played 10 games last season, starting four, and is currently with the first-team defense in nickel situations.
“I’m definitely hungry,” Polk said. “I feel a lot more relaxed, too. Camp is going good, just gotta stay humble and keep grinding.”
Polk spent much of the summer going over film with Sidney Saulter, starting corner Norman Wolfe, Jr. and safeties Luke Wollet and Leon Green.
“I’m just trying to continue to learn and master my technique, master everything I possibly can think of,” he said.
Wide receiver Tyshon Goode is continuing to receive treatment for a hamstring injury he suffered on the first day of fall camp. Hazell said Tuesday that Goode told him he’s feeling “really well,” and that Goode will continue to be considered a game-time decision for KSU’s opener against Towson on Aug. 30.
Ryan Lewis can be reached at email@example.com. Read the Kent State blog at http://www.ohio.com/flashes. Follow him on Twitter at http://twitter.com/RyanLewisABJ and on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/sports.abj.