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August 4, 2012Safeties coach Clint Bowen and the secondary talked before Saturday's practice.
The primary focus for the second day of fall camp on Friday consisted of the offense installing four wide receiver set formations. That meant the quarterbacks had more of a chance to air the ball downfield. Cornerback Greg Brown, who would usually go up against wide receivers D.J. Beshears or Daymond Patterson, said he thought the defense held its own throughout the practice.
"It is one of the most exciting practices because you know you are going to get tested so you got to stay on top of your game and your technique," Brown said.
The highlight of the practice was a Huldon Tharp tipped pass that resulted in a Lubbock Smith interception. Prinz Kande also recorded an interception and Tyler Patmon had two big pass breakups when the team was practicing third and short situations.
While most of the players had a good grasp on the pass coverages from spring practice, the focus for the day was on eye control. Safeties coach Clint Bowen said the team needed a lot of improvement in that area.
"It is the very small minute things right now that we have to fix," Bowen said. "You can put in a million schemes and coverages, but if your guys don't get their eyes in the right place and react in the right way then none of it matters. We are working hard to get our guys to play the game with great discipline."
McDougald switch positions
During spring practices the the coaches moved Bradley McDougald from strong safety to free safety. The move was designated to allow McDougald to use his athleticism to have a bigger role in pass coverage.
Last year, McDougald had more responsibility in the run game, but thinks the switch will allow him and strong safety Lubbock Smith to play to their strengths.
"Lubbock is more of a physical downhill type of guy and my coverage skills are a little better than his," McDougald said.
To play the more athletic free safety position, McDougald said he decreased his body fat percentage from 10 percent to 7 percent during the offseason while maintaining his 210 pound weight.
The freshman who has been most talked about in the secondary is Greg Allen. He is currently serving as a backup to Tyler Patmon at cornerback.
"I haven't seen him get beat that much," Greg Brown said. "He's been tested on a lot of deep balls and he has broken up all of them."
Clint Bowen Q&A
Bowen on ranking the secondary in terms of speed, knowledge, and instincts?
If you are asking me and I am not even positive, but I would pick Greg Brown in a foot race. If we had to go on Jeopardy to win a million bucks I would pick Tyler Patmon and for the best instincts I would pick Bradley McDougald.
Bowen on Dave Campo?
The first thing and we have a lot of Texas kids on our team, but when Coach Campo steps up in the front of the room those guys know what he has accomplished in his career. They know who he is and where he has been and the people he has coached. When he can plop down three Super Bowl rings, you would have to be a fool not to respect what he has accomplished in his coaching career. He has been around long enough that if he says something there ears perk up and they listen. He brings a presence to the room that is hard to match.
Bowen on Tevin Shaw?
Here is a kid who is a kid who comes in already physically developed. He's a smart kid who has good instincts. There isn't a reason he shouldn't have a lot of success at safety.