Spring game format to pit ‘O’ against ‘D’

Spring practices are over and now all the BGSU football team has to do is give fans a preview of what they can expect come fall from a team filled with many new faces.

After four weeks of practicing, the Falcons will conclude their spring schedule by hosting their annual Spring Game at Doyt L. Perry Stadium tomorrow with a start time set for noon.

“The Spring Game is always exciting,” BG wide receiver Corey Partridge said. “It’s a lot of guys first chance to actually play. A lot of guys have been here, got red-shirted and haven’t got the chance to get into action, so all this work we’ve been doing for last 14, 15 practices is going to be a lot of fun to see what happens.”

What will make this year’s Spring Game even more interesting will be the fact that instead of the traditional splitting the team into two separate teams, the format will be the offensive units against the defensive units. A special scoring system will be used to determine the winner, as certain point totals will be awarded to each side for making certain types of plays.

“We just feel we’re so young that dividing the team up and playing a game wouldn’t be in our best interest right now,” BGSU coach Gregg Brandon said of the change in format. “We need our defensive players to continue to get reps as units and our offensive players to continue to get reps as units.”

What worries Brandon is that just 11 starters will be returning in the fall, as there are 23 players who are freshmen and sophomores listed as being two-deep at their respective positions. This includes the ever-important quarterback position, where right now, sophomore Anthony Turner is in a tight battle with freshman Freddie Barnes for the starting position.

“I like our quarterbacks,” Brandon said. “They’re both good passers, but I tell you what they really can run the offense and the running game. We’re going to find a way to get them on the field at the same time.”

In charge of that running game will be junior Dan Macon and sophomores Chris Bullock and Bobby Thomas. They’re three tailbacks with little experience between them, but who have shown a lot of promise this spring.

“We’re going to need all of those guys this year,” Brandon said. “We’ve put in some two-back plays and I like the looks of that because of Pete Winovich at fullback, who is doing a nice job there as well as we’ll use him to help those guys back there.”

Once the running game is going, the Falcons hope it will open up opportunities for their young wide-outs as well. Partridge and Marques Parks will lead an inexperienced receiving core that will be in charge of replacing standouts, Charles Sharon and Steve Sanders, who were lost to graduation. Returning starting tight end Sean O’Drobinak should add insurance to the passing game after coming off a strong end to last season.

“It’s a learning process right now,” Partridge said of his unit. “We only got two returning starters and not that many catches in our group, so we’re trying to catch all the young guys up.”

The defensive side of the ball will also see some new faces this season, as only five returning starters return to a unit that struggled last season giving up an average of 27.6 points a game and allowed 378.6 total offensive yards a game against.

Seniors Devon Parks and Brad Williams will lead the charge on the defensive line while only three starters will be behind them as yet again youth dominates another unit of the team.

Spring game scoring system offense 1 – 1st Down 2 – Run +15, Pass + 20 3 – Field Goal 6 – Touchdown (+1/2 PAT good) defense 1 – Stop (missed FG) 2- 4th Down Stop 2 – Hold O to a FG after a sudden change in the Red Zone 3 – 3 and Out 3 – Turnover 9 – Turnover and Score