Spring Games Galore

Spring Games Galore
April 16, 2012, 12:15 pm
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Connor Shaw warms up before the Garnet and Black spring game at Williams Brice Stadium.

(Jeremy Brevard-USA Today Sports)

This past weekend featured over 40 spring football games. It was an opportunity for fans to see players in a game like setting, while coaches evaluated personnel one final time. Most coaches will tell you that the number one goal is to get bout of the game healthy. It's amazing that for fourteen practices"injuries are a part of football" but on this one day they become the focal point. The reason behind this begins with the style of the practice. A lot of teams will hold "controlled" scrimmages which can protect players. Spring games are a free for all except with the quarterback and that causes concern for coaches.For the SEC this weekend it appeared that everyone avoided major injuries. As a matter of fact the league looked more like the old Mountain West with offense being the norm this weekend. -In Athens many thought it would be Keith Marshall that pushed Isaiah Crowell for the starting job, but Saturday it was Ken Malcome that had a nice day. Everyone I have talked to around the Georgia program says Crowell is a changed man. He is more mature and playing tougher,especially between the tackles. Aaron Murray continued to throw the ball down field and connected with Tavares King for a 33 yard touchdown.-On the plains it is becoming more evident that Kiehl Frazier is the quarterback of the Tigers. Frazier has seen more first team reps during the spring helping his development. Frazier was 7-9 on Saturday and the game appears to be slowing down for him. The Tigers would like to be able to find a starter for several years under offensive Scot Loeffler. They have pretty much been one and done under Gene Chizik and need some consistency.Frazier only threw twelve passes all last season compared to nine this past Saturday.-Steve Spurriers Gamecock aired it out on Saturday, showcasing a much improved passing game. Believe it or not this was an area of emphasis for South Carolina this spring. Starting quarterback Connor Shaw is firmly entrenched (as any QB can be under Spurrier) as the number one guy. Shaw opened with a 70 yard touchdown and finished 6-7 for 128 yards. Steve Spurrier's offense finished 95thin the country in passing last season and with Heisman candidate Marcus Lattimore out rehabbing an injury it gave the offense a chance to throw it more.The top three quarterbacks finished 29-39 for 428 yards and five touchdowns.-Leave it to Alabama to keep things grounded (somewhat) as the Crimson Tide may have found a new running back to throw into the mix. Freshman TJ Yeldon took advantage of Eddie Lacy sitting out the spring and created quite the buzz in Tuscaloosa with 88 yards rushing and 91 yards receiving. AJ McCarron who has had a nice spring continued the trend of gaudy passing numbers completing 2942 for 304yards. He also threw two touchdowns but did have three interceptions. Look for our complete spring wrap-up of the ACC and SEC coming May 2nd on CSS with Talkin' Football. Our show features award winning television host Bob Neal,award winning writer Tony Barnhardt, award winning football player "myself" and of course award presenting Mark Schlabach.Follow me on twitter @bradyack.

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