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I saw some bright spots yesterday that give me some hope...not a lot, but some...
--- Day...I think this kid is one of our the best true freshman defensive tackles in the last 15 years or so with tremendous "upside" given his age...I was impressed...
--- McDaniel...if only, (if only,) he had moved to corner from Day 1...he would be starting...I liked his instinctual coverage capabilities...tough, tenacious...
--- Golsen...took the coaching staff and Kelly by surprise is my assessment...in some respects Kelly took a gamble with the game make-up...
--- left himself open to massive 2nd guessing if Rees starts, which I still put at an 80% probability regardless of Golsen's upside ( a la Rice)...sorry for reality.
--- Atkinson has to play, must play, should play...down after down after down...true speed we haven't seen at ND in a long, long time...unfortunately, Alford's "strip drills" need improvement....Riddick and Wood simply can't break the huge, long runs....no brainer IMO.
--- Eiffert...great tight end, but no one to take the heat off of him in a real game where "phony" mismatches aren't going to happen...which we saw at the Spring Game...slots will not take the heat off of him, so I would expect consistent doubles every game...bad news like we saw with Floyd last year where the slots didn't trouble any defense.
--- Offensive line...tough to tell right now, but it looks to me like this unit is very comparable to last year's unit....the big "IF" in my book is whether or not L0ombard can kick it up several notches from Dever. I have my doubts, but who knows until game time. With Golic at right guard, I see a drop off from Trevor, so all in all, everything looks good, but no better than last year. Can Hiestand really develop them is the question, and importantly, some rotation for the following year when we lose the left side and Cave. Better get it done.
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