TULSA'S BLANKENSHIP TALKS ABOUT THE HURRICANE DEFENSE
April 2, 2014
Tulsa, Oklahoma - The Tulsa football team completed practice No. 7 on Tuesday with a two-hour workout on the turf at H.A. Chapman Stadium.
Golden Hurricane Head Coach Bill Blankenship talked about the team's progress through the first seven practice sessions.
"When we first started spring practice, one of our goals was to become a much more physical football team, and we're doing that. We're learning how to compete and the practices are becoming a lot more physical," said Blankenship. "What I want is for every position to be physical. You take it for granted in the offensive and defensive lines, but we need everybody else to develop that mindset. Through seven practices, I think we've taken some big steps in that direction."
In 2013, the Hurricane defense was a young unit with just one senior starter, while six of the starters were either freshmen or sophomores. Blankenship has been pleased with the progress of the Tulsa defense through the halfway point of spring drills.
"What has really been fun is to see the young guys that played a year ago become more veteran. By the second half of last season some of those young guys were starting to play a little better and starting to figure it out. Now, in spring ball you see the maturity level," said Blankenship.
"I think what coach (Brent) Guy would tell you, is what I see, is that we're still not getting it on every play. We're looking for more consistency," added Blankenship. "We can be good, but then we're still getting a few mental breakdowns that are too many for us to be a championship defense yet."
"I like the depth defensively," said Blankenship. "I like the depth in the defensive line and our linebacker play has been solid so far. We're still missing a few guys. Trent (Martin) is out there every day, but not able to practice and we know he's going to make us better. I love the way Michael Mudoh, Will Barrow and Demarco Nelson have looked in the secondary."
"Overall, we're getting better," added Blankenship.
Tulsa will be back on the practice field Tuesday at 3:30 pm and again on Saturday morning. Practices are open to the public.
The Annual Spring FanFest is set for Saturday, April 19th with festivities beginning at 1:00 pm and the spring game at 2:00 pm. Once again this year, fans will be invited onto the field during the interactive spring game as the Hurricane will conduct the spring game on just 50 yards of the field.
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