Donald Hawkins showing good alignment on the hoof in Texas opening day spring practice. (TexasSports - Feb. 23, 2012)
Grades, grades, grades. Mack Brown announced on Thursday a new accountability system has been implemented. The details are somewhat ambiguous but suffice to say there will now be a record keeping of who is earning their way based on performance both on and off the field.
Just because you had the best effort, doesn't mean you're going to play, because some don't have enough ability to be a great player. But everybody should be able to give their best effort and be exceptional, and that's what we are working toward. And those grades should reflect that today and we haven't given them a grade in the past, so this is a new thing for us that should stimulate some conversation and show them how serious we are, even though I thought the team played hard last year by and large throughout the year.
We'll probably see some quotes from Coaches Diaz, Applewhite, and Harsin later today, as well as the new team leaders, but expect coach/player speak. It will be interesting to read just how much the off season conditioning program prepared players for spring practice as Wylie is a high-riser in the respect arena.
Insider sources have been dishing out first hand reviews to pay sites of day one action. I have linked to those articles below. All but one are subscription required.
The reports indicate that Donald Hawkins was The Man on Day Uno lining up at offensive left tackle. I'm not going to rehash the 6'5" JUCO All-American's bio here, but if you are a fan of the big nasties, and the seemingly absence of well rounded reviews of such on the 40 Acres the past several seasons, then take heart help is lining up and on the way. And his counterpart, JUCO early enrollee Brandon Moore got starter reps at defensive tackle alongside Ashton Dorsey. The practice reviewer noted Moore came in a little chunky but I'm sure he'll continue to work with Wylie and burn that right off. Stacey Searels is throwing these two immediate impact players right into the fire. Mind you, this is a HUGE message being sent to all the home-grown multi-star players who are having to check ego. One more LOS note. As Mack Brown indicated on Thursday, Garrett Porter made the most strides in offseason conditioning and looks every bit the part of his massive He'll come in and give great 2-deep support and fill in the depth on the offensive line the team so desperately has been lacking. BTW, to save you some time, the front five offensive linemen yesterday went 1,625 lbs.
Other news items of note confirm the usual suspects are manning starting positions in the defensive backfield and at quarterback. I was not able to learn of any other starter reps so please feel free to share your information in the comments area.
A final word on practice schedule. The Longhorn Network released yesterday the broadcast schedule for spring practices. Everyone that has access to the network be sure to gloat it over those that don't. It's the American way don't you know.
Longhorn Network to Provide Exclusive Preview of 2012 Football Team with 12 Practices and Spring Game on Slate
Longhorn football fans will get an early look at the 2012 team when, for the first time, 12 spring practices and the April 1 Spring Game will be televised exclusively on Longhorn Network, the 24/7 University of Texas channel.
To accompany the Spring Game, Texas GameDay will be live from Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium with interviews and analysis prior to kickoff at 2 p.m. Texas GameDay Final will be live from the stadium immediately following the game.
On March 20, LHN will provide daylong coverage of Texas Football Pro Day, live from Frank Denius Practice Fields.
Former Longhorns offensive lineman David Snow, safety Blake Gideon, linebacker Keenan Robinson, linebacker Emmanuel Acho and defensive tackle Kheeston Randall, will put their talents on display in preparation for the NFL draft in April.
Spring football practice and scrimmages scheduled to air on Longhorn Network:
Date Time (all times CT) Activity
Feb. 23 4 p.m. Football practice
Feb. 28 4 p.m. Football practice
Mar. 2 4 p.m. Football scrimmage
Mar. 3* 7 p.m. Football scrimmage
Mar. 5 4 p.m. Football practice
Mar. 6* 7 p.m. Football practice
Mar. 8 4 p.m. Football faculty scrimmage
Mar. 20 4 p.m. Football practice
Mar. 22 4 p.m. Football practice
Mar. 26 4 p.m. Football practice
Mar. 28 4 p.m. Football practice
Mar. 30 3:30 p.m. Football practice
*Note: Practices and scrimmages on 3/3 and 3/6 will air on short turnaround. All others are live.
Mack Brown will sit down with Longhorn Network Host, Lowell Galindo, to weigh in on the progress of the team during a special four-part spring series of Game Plan.
Programming schedule for Game Plan with Mack Brown:
Date Time (all times CT)
Feb. 29 10:30 p.m.
Mar. 7 10:30 p.m.
Mar. 21 10:30 p.m.
Mar. 28 10:30 p.m.
Where to Watch
Longhorn Network is available on Verizon FiOS TV, Grande Communications, Consolidated Communications, En-Touch Systems, E-Tex Communications, Bay City Cablevision, Mid-Coast Cablevision and Texas Mid-Gulf Cablevision. Longhorn Network is now available online to Verizon FiOS subscribers at LonghornNetwork.com. It will be available on tablets and on smartphones to fans with an affiliated video subscription in the near future.