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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    3

    Learning the Hard Way

    I wasn't considered a "great" player in high school. Our offense was built around the legs of our running backs, which put us squarely in the option, as it funneled the ball to them, with space to run. After my first year as a starter, I spent a lot of time in the offseason working on the traits that make an option quarterback. I did a lot of work on my lower body, making me a more explosive runner, and allowed me to put a lot more zip into passes. We had 2 more successful season, capping my senior year with a State Title in Tennessee.

    That's when all the questions started pouring in.

    "Where are you going to college, Will?" they'd ask, trying to get some idea. Everyone expected me to jump right into a big SEC school, like Florida, South Carolina, even Tennessee. I didn't have the heart to tell them what I was really looking for. I didn't want a program with those kinds of expectations. I wanted to go to college somewhere that would be a low-key school that played enough football to get me noticed by scouts when the time was right. I also wanted a really good quarterbacks coach, one known for sending players to the NFL. This actually made my decision pretty easy. Duke University was a building program, under the tutelage of Quarterback guru David Cutcliffe. Cutcliffe, who put Peyton and Eli Manning into the upper echelon of the NFL, who got production and a draft position out of Erik Ainge and a national championship out of Tee Martin. If there was anyone who could teach me to be a good quarterback, it was him, no question.

    Signing day came, and when it came time to make my choice, I didn't hesitate, putting on my Blue Devils hat and grinning for all the world to see, shocking most of it. No one expected me to go to such a bottom-feeding team, but they didn't understand my motivation, and probably never would. Playing in practice with Duke meant I was at a lower risk for injury during the week, and allowed me to save up quite a bit of strength for Game Day, where we would put all the preparation I was known for to use.

    Coach Cutcliffe stayed in constant contact with me over the spring, sending me the playbook and talking me through some of the coverage reads. When the time came for my first practice, I was blown away by how good he really was. He spent a lot of time helping me refine my footwork, quicken my release, and improve my pocket presence. After a handful of practices, he told me I would get a good chance to compete for the starting job once all the other players came back, and any walk-ons were evaluated. I was ready to go. I spent the remainder of the summer practicing the anticipation and timing he had talked about with his offense, throwing thousands of slant and curl patterns to friends and family that were willing. I still kept my legs in shape, as the ability to step through my throwing motion was giving me a great zip on the ball.

    Fall was on the horizon, and I had to be ready. Duke was not exactly a team to be reckoned with, and whoever started at quarterback needed to be ready for a battle each and every week.
    Some call it bad luck, I call it a blessing in disguise. Michael Vick gives way to Matt Ryan, and the Falcons are doing things they've never done before.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    3
    Pre-Season Scouting Report: Connor Ramsey, QB #4, Duke Blue Devils
    Seems like an interesting project player. Since Duke has no "real" starter, this kid could come in and play right away, and will benefit a great deal from the coaching of David Cutcliffe. Already shows a quality not very common in option quarterbacks: patience. In the State Playoffs, he looked completely at ease when throwing the football, easily finding receivers when the time came. Because of the option background, he possesses great mobility, but says he's worked on it some more during the offseason, so we'll see how that figures into his game.

    As a quarterback, he really needs to work on developing anticipation and timing with his receivers. He's what we call a "see it, throw it" kind of guy now, but a few seasons under Cutcliffe should fix that and develop him into a solid passer. As a runner, he does an excellent job of setting up and using blockers to turn a 4-5 yard scramble into a 15-20 yard gash. One wonders how a West Coast offense will adapt this running ability into its fold.

    All in all, this kid figures to play a role in the future of Duke University, either helping their fortunes or by being another nameless quarterback to come through. Only time, and a good amount of coaching will tell.

    (Submitted by Kirk Herbstreit for ESPN)
    Some call it bad luck, I call it a blessing in disguise. Michael Vick gives way to Matt Ryan, and the Falcons are doing things they've never done before.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    3
    Week 1: FCS East at Duke
    Since the beginning of the fall term, we'd been working hard to get me up to speed. My timing was better, but still lagging a little behind. I struggled throwing Dig and Curl patterns, as the ball always seemed to be in the wrong place. I was announced as the starter, but primarily to help energize a fanbase that had been sorely disappointed for years. Apparently after the first series of fall practices, Coach decided we were all about even, so he gave me the nod thanks to my feet.

    Warm-ups were relaxed, as they should have been. We had taken the week of practice as seriously as humanly possible, practicing key plays until they were second nature to us. I stayed behind after practices to watch film on our receivers, hoping to get a better idea of when they would come out of breaks on certain routes. All in all, we were confident. Well-prepared, confident, and ready.

    FCS East got the opening kickoff and promptly went 3-and-out against our defense. Defensive tackle Jason Wilson had a sack on 3rd down that got us the ball. After a short return, it was time for the offense. The jitters were incredible as I walked over to Coach for the playcall.

    "Brown Right, 18 Stretch on 1. Get them used to a quick count, then you can set them up later in the game for some penalties."

    Running back Isiah Dukes took the handoff, knifing and slicing between would-be tacklers, gaining 14 yards before a cornerback brought him down with a shoestring tackle. We pounded away 3 more times, gaining a total of 25 yards, setting us up in their territory.

    "Ace Slot Right, 414 Curl H Swing on 2"

    The delayed snap count fooled no one, the ball was snapped, and I faded back into my drop. I wanted to throw the Curl to Derek Ward, but he bit a double-team from the snap. Dukes picked up a linebacker as soon as he turned upfield, and Justin Vickers had a corner squatting on his route. I pumped the Curl to Ward and fired to Tight End Dave Carpenter, hitting him square in the numbers as he broke out of his underneath hitch. He turned upfield for a gain of 12.

    The rest of the game went by in a blur. Because the Rhinos were so hesitant to bring a run-blitz, Coach kept dialing up the run and Dukes had a career day because of it. He finished with 23 carries for 244 yards and 4 touchdowns as we drubbed them. I finished with 163 yards and touchdown of my own, as well as 37 yards on the ground, completing passes to 5 different receivers and staying above 65% completion percentage. Overall, it was a good way to start the season.
    Some call it bad luck, I call it a blessing in disguise. Michael Vick gives way to Matt Ryan, and the Falcons are doing things they've never done before.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Bulgaria
    Posts
    1
    Gamer IDs

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  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Posts
    1

    please write more

    thanks, please write more, very interesting!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Nicaragua
    Posts
    1
    Gamer IDs

    PSN ID: HiKitty

    hi there

    hi there,

    very very good , thanks !


 

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