WKU practice update 8/18

18 08 2010

The Western Kentucky football team slopped through the rain during its lone workout of the day on Wednesday.

A couple of notes from practice:

– Junior quarterback Matt Pelesasa was very limited in his reps Wednesday due to what first-year coach Willie Taggart described as a tired arm.

Taggart said Pelesasa looked off on his throws early in practice, prompting him to ask Pelesasa if everything was Ok.

Pelesasa revealed that his arm was sore, hence the limited reps.

“We told him to take a break, we don’t want him to overdo it,” Taggart said. “We’re not going to put him out there and jeopardize him if his shoulder is a little sore. If it’s sore, we don’t need you in there.”

Taggart said that he doesn’t think the injury will go very far in terms of clouding the overall quarterback picture, because he expects Pelesasa back very soon. However, the injury did allow true freshman Brandon Doughty to take the bulk of the snaps that Pelesasa sat out.

“I don’t think it clouds anything because I don’t think he’ll be out long, I just wanted to give him a rest,” Taggart said. “But, if you’re out for a while, it’s going to be hard for you to play football for us.

“That’s never going to change around here. Hurt players are sorry players and poor players are poorly prepared players – and they can’t help us.”

As far as Doughty is concerned, Taggart said he saw some good and some bad from his true freshman today – but he did add that the extra amount of work never hurts.

“He had some freshman mistakes, but he did come in and complete some passes and got us moving,” Taggart said. “With a wet ball, with him being a freshman, he could’ve really gotten rattled. But he didn’t, he ran with it.

“I think now guys are starting to understand that if other players go down, you’ve got to step in and take advantage of it.”

Jeffries rests

– Junior offensive tackle Wes Jeffries missed practice again Wednesday and spent the day with his right arm in a sling.

Taggart said that the sling was simply a precaution for Jeffries, as his shoulder has been bothering him for most of camp.

But much like he said about junior running back Bobby Rainey earlier in the week, Taggart said that Jeffries is one of WKU’s most proven linemen – meaning that there is no need to press the issue physically with him at this point in training camp.

One player who was back on the field this afternoon was senior outside linebacker Chris Bullard. Bullard participated in full pads after missing several workouts early in camp due to some rehab to a minor offseason knee surgery.

Bullard is expected to start at outside linebacker this season.

Wet ball, no problem

Despite the rainy conditions, the passing game put on quite a display Wednesday.

Kawaun Jakes made several nice throws down the field with a slippery ball, while Doughty made perhaps the throw of the day with a perfectly in stride 25-yard flag rout to redshirt freshman Willie McNeal.

Doughty also delivered a timely strike to Clark Jeter in the endzone during redzone drills.

Jake’s throw of the day came on a quick 10-yard in-pattern to Marcus Vasquez – Vasquez put on a very nice move and then ran another 20 yards down field before being forced out of bounds.

As good a day as it was for the passing attack, that meant it was equally rough for the defensive backfield.

I’ll have a story in Thursday’s Daily News with comments from defensive backs coach Clayton White, as well as Taggart, on the overhaul taking place with the Hilltopper secondary.

So stay tuned for that.

Until then, stay dry.

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