Scrimmage Notebook: Gause Grabs Defense's First Interception
Offense, Defense Both Show Promise in Second Scrimmage
Published: Wednesday, August 18, 2010
Updated: Wednesday, January 9, 2013 20:01
The dreads coming out of the back of the helmet are unmistakable as DeLeon Gause prowls the defensive secondary. The senior cornerback started 10 games last year and finished fifth on the team in tackles, but proved he could be more than a physical presence along the sidelines during the team's second scrimmage.
Gause set off some fireworks during Wednesday's scrimmage as he returned an interception for a touchdown. Though Dave Shinskie appears to have grown in the offseason as a quarterback, Gause read his eyes from the snap and jumped in front of Clyde Lee to pick off the pass.
After snagging the throw, Gause, who also tallied six tackles, crossed the field and evaded tacklers for a 54-yard pick-six. Gause's elusiveness could pay extra dividends, as it seems he will also return kicks for the Eagles this season. In the scrimmage, Gause called for a fair catch on each punt he received.
Starting center Nate Richman battled a back injury Wednesday night and did not participate in the team's second scrimmage. Richman, who looks to replace Matt Tennant at the center position, had never snapped a ball before last winter when the coaches informed him that he would take Tennant's job.
Richman has acknowledged that he feels comfortable in his new role, and guard Thomas Claiborne vouched for him during media days. But the Eagles could be in trouble if Richman isn't there. In his absence on Wednesday, Mark Spinney seemed to struggle.
Spinney, a junior who entered BC highly recruited, played with the second team in the first scrimmage and got beat numerous times by defensive tackle Dillon Quinn and the rest of the second-team defensive line. During Wednesday's action, he and Dave Shinskie had trouble on their exchange, as two fumbles came off botched snaps.
Holding tight to the safety blankets
Jordon McMichael's one-handed catch against Wake Forest remains one of the most memorable plays of last season. Fellow tight end Chris Pantale received second-team All-American freshman honors after he averaged 17.2 yards per game and caught 25 passes. These two tight ends, along with Lars Anderson, have already shown that they plan to figure more in the passing game this season.
"Well, we like to use our tight ends," head coach Frank Spaziani summed up.
McMichael led all receivers in the first scrimmage, and Pantale had the second longest reception of the second scrimmage on a 27-yard play down the middle of the field. Eight of the total 32 completions went to the tight ends, and all showed good strength as they fought through tackles for an extra few yards.
With questions surrounding an unproven receiving corps, these three veteran tight ends will give their quarterbacks a valuable second or third option. Shinskie, Mike Marscovetra, Chase Rettig, and Josh Bordner all looked comfortable finding their tight ends in the middle of the field when no downfield options were viable.
Shinskie had a strong second scrimmage, finishing 13 for 19 with a touchdown and interception. Marscovetra, the No. 2 quarterback, went nine for 12 for 83 yards, and Rettig, a true freshman, ended the scrimmage with eight-of-10 passing for 65 yards. … Nate Freese went three for three on field-goal attempts, knocking them in from 30, 42, and 48 yards. … Defensive end Max Holloway logged four tackles and three sacks, while Alexander DiSanzo led the defense with 13 tackles. … Montel Harris hauled in four passes for 35 yards. Harris caught only eight passes all of last season.