September 25, 2013
Oregon Week: Tuesday Cal practice notebook
With the first away game of the season in four days, the Bears held a fast-paced practice Tuesday afternoon. Once again, defense was a point of emphasis -- specifically, defending Oregon's read option runs and play action passes. Coach Sonny Dykes spent almost the entirety of the two extended scout team periods (i.e. 11s vs scouts on both sides of the ball) working with the defense. And with the team in full game prep mode, all individual drills were completed by about half an hour into today's practice.
During both extended 11s vs. scouts periods, DC Andy Buh had the 1st & 2nd team defense focus on two things: (1) keeping outside contain [vs. the read option] and (2) maintaining eye discipline [vs. play action]. Sonny spent the entire first scout team session with the defense, underscoring the importance of stopping -- or at least slowing -- Oregon's run game.
Buh was quite vocal throughout both scout periods -- some of his coaching points included: "This is their favorite play, favorite formation!"; "Eyes eyes! Keep 'em between us!" (when reminding defenders to read their keys and keep contain); "Watch the rub routes now!" (while teaching the back 7 on how to defend the Ducks' pick plays).
Buh was quick to address mistakes and also give encouragement when needed. He gave the secondary an earful for lining up wrong on a play: "its Cover 3, come on, do it right!!!"
A few plays later, Buh shouted "good, good!" -- and added a few claps for good measure -- when the DE & LB kept contain on a screen, with multiple defenders stopping the receiver for a minimal gain. Later, he yelled "thats not good enough, you gotta wrap up!" as several would-be tacklers swarmed to the ball-carrier but didn't quite finish the play.
The defense may not have had a perfect day, but several players made good plays in coverage during scout team work. Nick Forbes...
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