August 4 practice blog

Army preseason camp opened to the voices of strength and conditioning coach Tim Caron and his assistant Darren Mustin.

Caron shouted to the team, “It’s the first day, we got to be fast. It’s the first day we got to be explosive,” while Army was warming up.

After special teams drills, the team broke into offense and defense. The first snap of preseason hit the turf on an exchange between senior quarterback Angel Santiago and junior center Matt Hugenberg.

Junior A.J. Schurr, Army’s top quarterback in the spring, and senior safety and co-captain Geoff Bacon were not at practice due to injuries. After practice, coach Monken told media that injured players will rehab and lift weights and will not be attending training camp until they are healthy enough to practice.

First-team offense (from what I observed): QB Angel Santiago; FB Larry Dixon; RB Tony Giovannelli; RB Raymond Maples/Terry Baggett; WR Xavier Moss; WR Edgar Poe; TE Kelvin White; LT Drew Hennessy; LG Steve Shumaker; C Matt Hugenberg; RG Stefan Moreau; RT Justin Gilbert.

First-team defense (from what I’ve observed): DE Joe Drummond; NG Richard Glover; DE Mike Ugenyi; LB Steve Ricciardi; LB Andrew King, LB Jeremy Timpf; LB Derek Sanchez; CB Josh Jenkins; CB Chris Carnegie; SS Hayden Pierce; FS Steve Johnson.

Second-team defense (from what I observed): DE Ryan Alexander, NG T.J. Atimalala, DE Bobby Kough, LB Dalton Mendenhall, LB Marcus Poling; LB Justin Fahn; LB James Kelly; CB Lamar Johnson-Harris; CB Marques Avery/Issac Winters; FS Luke Proulx; SS Joey Giovannelli.

Fullback depth chart: Larry Dixon, Sr.; Matt Giachinta, Jr.; Aaron Kemper, Soph.; PaulAndrew Rhoden, Soph.; Richie Smith, Soph.; Corey Wilkinson, Fr.; Morgan Willcox, Fr.; Nick Shiver, Fr.

More practice observations: Danny Verpaele, Army’s new offensive assistant, was working with the tight ends. Juniors Kelvin White, Jake Owens and Corey Hobbs were the lone tight ends at practice. Didn’t see sophomore Eddy Ruzga. Bob Bodine, who was working with tight ends in the spring, was helping offensive coordinator Brent Davis with the offensive line. Didn’t see offensive line coach Todd Spencer at practice…Senior center Todd McDonald working with freshman center Bryce Holland on his footwork…Sophomore wide receiver Edgar Poe was coaching up freshman receiver Jeff Ejekam on route running…Ejekam made a nice diving catch on a pass from Matt Kauffmann… Safeties Hayden Pierce and Joey Giovannelli each picked off freshman quarterback Kado Brown…Freshman running back Alex Turner caught a ball from Kaufmann in traffic near the sideline. Strength coach Darren Mustin made sure offensive linemen Chris Smythe and Brett Toth had water during a short break an hour and 40 minutes into practice…After the team broke practice, cornerbacks were running the width of the field…All quarterbacks stayed late to work on the center exchange.

Videos: An interview with quarterback Angel Santiago and some practice footage below.

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