ECU Completes First Fall Scrimmage
Aug. 13, 2011
GREENVILLE, N.C. - Redshirt freshman inside linebacker Jeremy Grove recorded seven tackles to lead a stout defensive effort that included five sacks (-27 yards) and 12 tackles for lost yardage (-45 yards) during East Carolina's first intra-squad scrimmage of preseason camp Saturday morning at Dowdy Ficklen Stadium.
On the other side of the ball, senior quarterback Dominique Davis threw for a team-best 97 yards and completed 15 of his 20 passes while redshirt freshman running back Alex Owah turned a fourth-and-one carry into a 41-yard score to lead a unit that surrendered only one turnover during the contest.
Second-year head coach Ruffin McNeill and his staff guided the Pirates through 91 plays, 57 passes and 34 rushes, with all levels of the program's preseason depth chart receiving nearly equal repetitions.
"I thought it went well today," McNeill said. "There were a lot of really good competitive situations. The offense had a good drive, then the defense battled back, made stops and forced some third-down plays.
"I'm anxious to watch the film, evaluate it and grade the players," McNeill continued. "From an eyeball point of view, I saw really positive things."
Davis, Rio Johnson, Brad Wornick and Shane Carden split repetitions at quarterback with Davis taking the opening series. Among the running backs, Owah, Reggie Bullock, Michael Dobson and Torrance Hunt all recorded six or more carries. Bullock, a junior transfer from Arizona Western Community College, rushed for 49 yards on six carries (8.2 yards per carry) while Dobson gained 23 yards on 10 carries. Owah finished the day with 50 yards on five attempts and Hunt tallied seven carries that totaled three yards.
"There were some good things there," McNeill said of the running backs. "I have to look at the film to evaluate the blocking responsibilities, but I saw some really good runs and cuts. You can tell that position has competition."
For the defense, Emanuel Davis finished right behind Grove in tackles with six. Diavalo Simpson also turned in a strong performance with a pair of sacks (-12 yards) and five total stops. Zeek Bigger, Derek Blacknall and Lamar Ivey each booked four tackles with Bigger making one for a three-yard loss and Blacknall adding a pass breakup. Marke Powell, Derrell Johnson and Terry Williams were credited with the other three sacks during the contest.
"I saw them come up with some big plays," McNeill said of the defensive effort. "It will just get better with time. The benefit of going to the 3-4 was evident with more speed and athleticism on the field."
The offense held the upper hand at the start as Davis marched the unit 70 yards downfield with Dobson scoring on a four-yard run. Michael Barbour converted the extra point and was a perfect three-for-three on PATs during the scrimmage. Barbour also drilled a 49-yard field goal but had a 27-yard attempt blocked by Jacobi Jenkins.
Michael Bowman led the receivers with seven catches (41 yards) while Justin Hardy tallied a scrimmage-high 55 yards on five grabs. Derrick Harris and Reese Wiggins hauled in four passes apiece for 33 and 26 yards, respectively, with Gray Mazzone catching three balls for 38 yards. Torian Richardson caught the lone touchdown pass of the scrimmage, a seven-yard strike from Johnson.
Near the end of the workout, ECU focused on red-zone plays with Carden tossing a 15-yard touchdown pass to Reese Wiggins and Barbour converting the extra point. Barbour also capped another possession during the red-zone period with a 36-yard field goal.
The Pirates were without their full contingent of players during the scrimmage as DB Desi Brown, RB Chris Hairston, OL Mack Helms, IWR Justin Jones, OWR Lance Lewis, OL Chaz Lowery, DB Rahkeem Morgan, OL Doug Polochak, IWR Danny Webster, DE Johnathon White and OWR Joe Womack all missed the action due to injury or illness. OL Stewart Hinson (bereavement) also missed the contest.
Following film evaluation of the scrimmage Saturday night, East Carolina returns to the Cliff Moore Practice Complex Sunday from 8:45 -11:00 a.m. for its 11th workout of the fall.
Sunday's Practice Time: 8:45 - 11:00 a.m.
FALL SCRIMMAGE NO. 1 STATS
RECEIVING: Michael Bowman (7-41 yards), Justin Hardy (5-55), Derrick Harris (4-33), Reese Wiggins (4-26), Gray Mazzone (3-38), Antonio Cannon (3-24), Dayon Arrington (3-14), Andrew Bodenheimer (3-5), Michael Dobson (2-13), Torian Richardson (2-12, 1 TD), Torrance Hunt (1-11), Donte Sumpter (1-9), Reggie Bullock (1-4), Zico Pasut (1-2). Totals -- 40-287, 1 TD
TACKLES: Jeremy Grove 7, Emanuel Davis 6, Diavalo Simpson 5 (2 sacks/-12 yards, 2 TFL/-12 yards), Zeek Bigger 4 (TFL/-3 yards), Derek Blacknall 4 (PB), Lamar Ivey 4, Jacobi Jenkins 3 (TFL/-1 yard, blocked FGA), Marke Powell 4 (sack/-4 yards, TFL/-4 yards), Kyle Tudor 4, Ty Holmes 3, Bradley Jacobs 3 (FR/no return), Damon Magazu 3, Justin Venable 3 (TFL/-3 yards), Brandon Williams 3, Terry Williams 3 (sack/-4 yards, 2 TFL/-8 yards), Terry Biles 2 (PB), Cody Lyon 2 (TFL/-2 yards), Detric Allen 1, Chris Baker 1, Jimmy Booth 1, James Craig 1, Daniel Drake 1 (TFL/-3 yards), Maurice Falls 1, Robert Huckabee 1, Derrell Johnson 1 (sack/-7 yards, TFL/-7 yards), Desmond Lawrence 1, Domonique Lennon 1, Matt Milner 1 (TFL/-2 yards), Leonard Paulk 1, Lee Pegues 1, Cliff Perryman 1, Chrishon Rose 1
TOTAL OFFENSE/TOTAL DEFENSE: 91-395 (4.3 ypp)
INTERCEPTIONS/RETURN YARDAGE: 0/0
THIRD DOWN CONVERSIONS: 10-22 (45.5%) - Johnson (4-6), Davis (3-5), Carden (2-7), Wornick (1-4)
FOURTH DOWN CONVERSIONS (when attempted): 3-5 (60.0%) - Johnson (1-1), Carden (1-1), Wornick (1-2), Davis (0-1)
PENALTIES: 9 (3/OFFENSE - 2 holding, 1 block in back, 1 false start; 5/DEFENSE - 2 pass interference, 1 illegal substitution, 1 holding, 1 personal foul)
QUARTERBACK FIRST DOWN/SCORING CHART (DRIVES)