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8/16/12 NMU football training camp report
August 16, 2012 - Matt Wellens
MARQUETTE— Inside the Superior Dome on Thursday night, the Northern Michigan University football team held its first of three scheduled scrimmages before the season opener on Aug. 30 at Findlay with two more tentatively slotted for Aug. 22 and 24.
Here are the highlights from Thursday’s action:
— Redshirt freshman quarterback Ryan Morley exclusively worked with the No. 1 offense all night against the No. 1 defense, yet head coach Chris Ostrowsky was not willing to publicly name him the starter for 2012 just yet.
Ostrowsky and his coaches planned to pour over scrimmage film of every player into the wee hours of Friday morning, sit on it for a few days, then begin making key decisions on who the upper echelon will be.
Leading the first team offense, Morley had his ups and downs, threw a few interceptions, but also made some strong throws for touchdowns to Julian Gaines and Christian Jessie.
Senior Cody Scepaniak worked with the No. 2 offense for all but one series, allowing true freshman Chris Nelson to have a shot while fellow true freshman Jay Tollefson got in for a series with the No. 3 offense.
Scepaniak may have looked the best he had all camp on Thursday and by my count, didn’t have an interception. He and junior halfback Trevor Kruzel combined for the play of the night when Scepaniak laid a ball right into the diving hands of Kruzel, who fell just over the goal line for six.
— Kruzel was one of a handful of backs that saw time in the scrimmage with senior tailback Prince Young getting limited carries — he limited himself at times by taking the first play on the second drive of red zone drills right across the goal line in seconds — and fellow senior tailback John Privitelli in the stands watching.
True freshman Keon Collier took advantage of the extra opportunities at running back by hitting holes quick, taking advantage of open space and finding the end zone on at least one occasion, if not another. He will be a tough kid to redshirt if Ostrowsky feels he has more than enough depth at the position.
— Ostrowsky rotated two punters on Thursday: senior place kicker Rockne Belmonte and true freshman Jason Seeke out of Cedarburg, Wis.
Kicking from about his own 35 yard line, Belmonte’s first kick had a hang time of 4.9 seconds, hit at the opponent’s 3 yard line and went in the end zone for a touchback. The Next two both landed around just before the 20 yard line with hand times of 2.9 and 3.3 seconds.
Seeke’s first snap went over his head while the next two punts that originated from about his own 32 landed on the opponent’s 29 and 25 yard lines. First hang time was 3.1 seconds while the second was just over four ticks.
I’ll have more from the scrimmage, including Ostrowsky’s thoughts, Friday morning on MiningJoournal.net. This weekend, NMU practices at 3:45 p.m. on Friday and 7:15 p.m. on Saturday. I’ll be checking in again on the blog following Media Day on Sunday at 1 p.m. inside the Superior Dome.
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