Notebook: Freshman QB adjusting to speed
Published: Wednesday, April 7, 2010 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, April 8, 2010 at 12:28 a.m.
Much has been made during spring practice about the awkward throwing motion of freshman quarterback Trey Burton. Over the last three weeks, many of the wrinkles have been ironed, but he admits he's still got a long way to go.
“The speed of the game is pretty fast,” Burton said after Wednesday's practice. “It's a lot faster than high school. You have a lot less time. ... I'm having fun, though.”
Burton says he and quarterbacks coach Scot Loeffler haven't worked yet on his mechanics, focusing instead on his footwork and digesting the playbook. He says he hasn't paid any attention to critics of his passing.
“I think (I'm adjusting well),” he said. “I'm not fumbling everything, and I'm not throwing interceptions. I'm pretty sure I'm doing OK.”
Linebackers coach D.J. Durkin has been dealing all spring with a flood of talented players looking to fill into the vacuum created by Brandon Spikes' departure. That hasn't stopped the first-year UF coach from taking on a special assignment after each practice.
Durkin has been working with defensive lineman Duke Lemmens every afternoon. He says that the staff is planning on working Lemmens into a few wrinkles this year.
“It's some of the things that we're looking to do with the defense and with the scheme,” Durkin said. “He's going to be asked to do some things, dropping wise and linebacker-movement type of stuff.”
Lemmens moved from his typical defensive end spot to play in the interior line for a few plays Wednesday. He forced a Chris Rainey fumble on second-down and goal during an 11-on-11 drill. That was scooped up by Will Hill.
“It's not something that he's going to be doing every down,” Durkin said.
Another linebacker making strides has been Jon Bostic. Like most other linebackers this spring, the sophomore has played all three spots behind the line and is expected to play each at times this season.
It's all part of Durkin's plan to cross-train every linebacker to play middle, weakside and strongside spots.
“It doesn't matter (where I play),” said Bostic, who has battled Jelani Jenkins for the middle spot. “I like (middle linebacker) better, but with us, we can go either way. Sometimes, we'll just switch it up by ourselves.”
Traditionally, the Wednesday before the Orange & Blue Debut game is the busiest with the most hitting and recruits in attendance. It didn't disappoint this year.
Wednesday's attendees included 2011 recruit Max Wittek of Santa Ana (Ca.) Mater Dei High School. The 6-foot-3, 200-pound quarterback Wittek already has a USC offer and is considering the Trojans and Gators along with UCLA, Cal and Notre Dame.
Chevelle Buie, a Scout.com three-star running back from Cocoa High School and Nick Waisome, a five-star cornerback from Groveland South Lake, alma mater of current Gator Jeff Demps, were also in attendance.
Emmanuel Moody (quad) returned to practice after missing Monday's session. He didn't participate in contact drills and spent most of the day in the pit.
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