No Rima Reason – UNI Football Holds 11am Scrimmage

courtesy UNIPanthers.com

UNI Panther football held a 2 hour practice on Saturday Aug. 16. Starting at 11:00am, including a scrimmage, about an hour long.

In exactly 2 weeks from when this particular practice started the Panthers will be opening up the season at Kinnick Stadium in Iowa City against the Hawkeyes.

Was the 11 am start used to mirror the 11:00am kickoff in two weeks?

“Exactly,” said 14th year Panther Head Coach Mark Farley. “We always try this 2 weeks out from the game, we did our pre-game meal at 6:30. And we kicked the game off at 11. It’s all about body clocking and finding out what the speed and the tempo of the game is. Two weeks from now we are on the bus back home and they have to understand that day is going to go fast so you have to get up and be ready to go right out of the gate.”

Some true freshman saw snaps during the scrimmage. Coach Farley commented,

“Yeah, there are three or four could play this year. A couple ran with the first unit and a couple ran with the second unit. We wanted to get the reps for these guys to see how they held up.”

One part of the scrimmage that Coach Farley liked was the tackling.

“The tackling was probably better than I anticipated with that being our first tackle day.”

One part he didn’t?

” We had too many dropped balls. Which I didn’t foresee coming. What I thought would happen I felt good about, but what I assumed we would catch, we dropped.”

The quarterback competition continued with both Sawyer Kollmorgen and Brion Carnes doing most of the work at QB during the scrimmage.

courtesy http://boxscorenews.com/northern-iowa-football-fall-in-doubleovertime-at-sdsu-p66248-100.htm

courtesy http://boxscorenews.com/northern-iowa-football-fall-in-doubleovertime-at-sdsu-p66248-100.htm

Both seemed to be efficient running the offense. Coach Farley said,

“Sawyer was sharp. Brion was fast. I don’t think anyone was surprised that Brion scored on the one play. Sawyer had a few balls that were dropped. He could have been a lot more successful,” Farley remarked. “I see them both making progress. As far as the starter for the opener vs Iowa? I’ll make that decision when the time is right.”

“I like where our team is at right now. We have had 2 weeks where we have made progress day to day.” Farley added.

Another thing that was impressive to see on this sun-filled Saturday at the outdoor UNI practice field was the number of purple and gold fans who showed up to watch. It didn’t go unnoticed by the Panther Head Coach.

“It’s awesome,” said Farley. “Everybody’s excited for the season.”

He added,

“I think it’s exciting for our players to see the excitement from the fans. I think we’re all anticipating something good coming from this, but our job is to keep our nose down and get to work.”

If this team continues to improve day to day over the next two weeks, not only can the opener on Saturday Aug. 30 be fun, but every Saturday after that can be too.

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Notes and tidbits from the scrimmage from the Sportsguys view:

  • Senior Linebacker Jake Farley was practicing and has been most of the past week in non contact drills coming off that broken leg from a year ago.
  • Young Farley, Jared, worked at the linebacker spot wearing his number 35 jersey. He looked good from my vantage point and appears to handle himself more like a veteran than a true freshman.
  • Junior tight end Braden Lehman from Iowa City/Regina High school had his dad in attendance wearing a black t-shirt with big bold purple letters on it that said, BEAT IOWA! I like the way you think Joe.
  • A number of guys carried the football in the scrimmage including Iowa transfer Barkley Hill. The former Cedar Falls Tiger. Tyvis Smith, Rashadeem Gray and Je’Veyon Browning also received carries.
  • Even though there were some dropped passes there are some outstanding receivers jockeying for playing time behind the big three of Kevin Vereen Jr, Chad Owens and Brett LeMaster. Too many to begin mentioning!
  • True freshman QB Eli Dunne played in the scrimmage. The 6′ 4″ 210 pounder from Grinnell appeared comfortable running the offense.

There was a full officiating crew working the scrimmage, and in talking with the crew prior to the start they said no new rules this year. The point of emphasis will continue to be on targeting. They did say that if instant replay is available they will review all targeting calls to decide if it was a targeting penalty. And if there isn’t replay they would review the play at half time with whatever video is available – and decide if the targeting call was correct. If they see that it should not have been called targeting, the player will be re-instated and can play the second half.

UNI will have instant replay available at all of its home games this year.

  • Share your thoughts and opinions on the UNI football team in the comments below!