UNT practiced early today, and by early, I mean 6 a.m. before the sun came up early.
UNT is scrimmaging at 9 a.m. tomorrow. Today’s workout was a light one, but there are always a few interesting tidbits one can pick up. You hate to miss even a light workout when it’s open. If you do, that pretty much guarantees that there will be an alien landing in period five and you’re going to miss it.
As far as what went on, both Derek Thompson and backup Andrew McNulty had good days.
UNT went one-on-one in passing drills near the end of practice from the 40-yard line going in. Thompson hit Andy Mensah, a sophomore receiver, on a deep post, Derrick Teegarden on a double-move and Carlos Harris for another touchdown. Teegarden made another nice catch on the sideline on a throw from Thompson later in practice. Thompson connected with Brandin Byrd from 14 yards out in red zone drills.
McNulty really shined in red zone drills. He hit Brett Renger from 14 yards out. The two connected again from 5 yards out. Willie Hubbard made a nice catch on a pass from McNulty earlier in practice.
Brock Berglund is still working his way back from a bad hamstring pull and is with the third team. He has a ton of talent, but I am sticking by the opinion that he is the down-the-line answer. Thompson has done nothing but cement his status as UNT’s the short-term future.
One loss I think people are overlooking from last season is punter Will Atterberry, who was really, really good. UNT has been OK in punting situations in practice, but won’t be nearly as good as it was last year.
D.Q. Johnson and Zac Whitfield posted interceptions.
Marcus Trice and Lairamie Lee are the first-team safeties at this point. Zed Evans is working with the second team. All three will play quite a bit, at least that is my guess.
Shawn McKinney is UNT’s second-team center, while Jarrian Roberts is with the second-team defense at end.
While we are talking about the depth chart, here is your lineup.
First team offense
QB — Derek Thomspon
WR (there will be guys who roll in and out) — Brelan Chancellor, Carlos Harris, Darnell Smith
RB — Brandin Byrd
C — Kaydon Kirby
G — Mason Y’Barbo, Cyril Lemon
T — LaChris Anyiam, Antonio Johnson
CB — Hilbert Jackson, Zac Whitfield
S — Marcus Trice, Lariamie Lee
MLB — Zach Orr
OLB — Derek Akunne, Will Wright
DT — Alexander Lincoln, Richard Abbe
DE — Aaron Bellazin, Chad Polk
Malik Dilonga is working with the second team at defensive end and posted a sack.
David Busby was with the second team at safety.
UNT worked on its blitz package today.
Injured defensive end Quenton Brown was at practice on crutches.
And in quite possibly the most impressive development at practice this morning, Mike Canales (one of our favorites) threw down the first few moves of the Dougie before practice when the team plays the players’ favorite tunes over the stadium sound system. It was pure greatness from two angles– 1. Chico knows the Dougie. 2. Chico mustered the energy and enthusiasm to Dougie at exactly 5:55 a.m. (I looked at my watch).
And yes, I did just lose half the audience for this blog (people over 40 with no kids).