Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Air Force finishes spring drills

Air Force concluded its spring workouts, with a surprising controversy at quarter-back. Tim Jefferson, the incumb-ent Falcon QB won the MWC Freshman of the Year last season, but struggled with eligibility. He practiced intermittently with the team during the spring. Rising star tailback Asher Clark was penciled into Jefferson's spot, but five practices later tore a meniscus and won't play again until the fall. So who's under center in Colorado Springs? Conner Dietz, a freshman, impressed the coaches enough perhaps to sneak into the #2 spot behind... behind whomever starts at QB for AFA in the fall. The battle for the #1 spot will continue.

Jared Tew remains an intriguing 210-pound possibility at tailback; newcomer Jon Davis has impressed at safety; two kickers are vying to replace the very steady Ryan Harrison; small Rick Ricketts may win a chance to replace an outgoing all-MWC DE.

AFA's toughest losses are at TE, both DEs, and K/P. Coach Calhoun gambled with true freshmen last year, and won big. Those young players (primarily Jefferson and Clark) return-- assuming healing and eligibility-- in strength, and give the Falcons a powerful nucleus to build around. The freshman safety Davis joins returning all-MWC safety Chris Thomas in the secondary, in what will be a strong area for the young team. [update: Reggie Rembert, the Falcons' best cornerback, has been suspended indefinitely, weakening AFA's strong backfield a little] The Wimple expects no dropoff for the Falcons in '09.

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