Roman anxious to see Senators in live action today
Carson High football coach Blair Roman gets his first look at his team in live competition today at 10 a.m. at Spanish Springs.
Roman said each team will run 40 offensive plays. The scrimmage will allow Roman an opportunity to see his entire team in action, and get some much-needed film on this year’s new players.
“I’m excited in particular to see how we play defensively,” Roman said. “I want to see how far we’ve come in that area. We’re breaking in a lot of new personnel.
“Spanish Springs is going to spread us out and throw it. I even expect them to go no-huddle on us today.”
Of the seven starters at linebacker and defensive back, five are juniors – free safety Gehrig Tucker, cornerbacks Andrew Gutierrez and Aaron Perez, outside linebacker Stefan Sobkiewicz and middle linebacker Austin Shaffer. Senior Sage Smith is at outside linebacker and sophomore Brady Rivera is at middle linebacker.
Rivera is a standout wrestler, and he starred on last year’s freshman team. Roman has always carried two or three sophomores as long as they meet certain criteria.
“They (sophomores) need to be getting a significant amount of playing time,” Roman said. “They don’t necessarily need to start. If they aren’t going to play a lot it’s better they play every down on the JV squad. It was a major question mark going into camp.
“He’s shown he’s ready for varsity. It’s more a matter to see if we can develop him now. Brady is close to 190 pounds. He’s a strong kid. Obviously being a wrestler, he’s mentally tough. It is a big jump.”
Smith, the veteran of the group, racked up 42 tackles, defensed two passes and forced one fumble.
There is a saying in golf that you can’t win a tournament on the first day, but you can certainly lose it on the first day.
“Usually not,” Roman said when asked if a player could lose a starting spot with a bad scrimmage. “It’s a long season. All the scrimmage does is give us an idea who will go out and compete.”
On offense, Roman will get his first look at new starter Garrett Schafer, who started on the JV team before being called up to the varsity. He played a half against Galena when starter Matt Nolan was hobbled by an ankle injury. Schafer passed for 62 yards and a score last year.
As of now, Nolan is ineligible, but allowed to practice with the team, and he will get some snaps in the scrimmage.
“Garrett will get the lion’s share of snaps with the first group,” Roman said. “I do plan on playing Matt a little bit.”
Schafer said he’s improved from last year. He is stepping into some big shoes as the starter.
“I’ve been working on my accuracy,” Schafer said Thursday afternoon. “I know what to expect this year; I know what I’m up against. It helped (getting some time last year).”
“Garrett is going to be fine,” junior running back Joey Thurman said. “I’m sure he’s going to be a little nervous, but he’s not scared.”
Thurman will be under the microscope, too. He’s playing the “F” spot which is the same position Dylan Sawyers occupied the last three years.
“I feel like there is a lot of pressure on me,” said Thurman, who rushed for 300 yards a year ago. “I felt I handled (things) well last year. I was behind Dylan last year. He’s gone and it’s time to make my role.”
Roman admitted that his team won’t b a quick-strike unit this year. To be effective, the Senators are going to have to possess the ball and keep the chains moving.