March 20 Practice Report

Nick Nelson/BSN

Inside, notes from Tuesday's Colorado football practice.

• Colorado will practice next on Thursday. Though it was scheduled to be a scrimmage, Dan Hawkins said "it may be more like a practice." They'll conduct it down on the practice fields. The team will practice with only five offensive linemen as Daniel Sanders (knee) will not be in pads, and Erick Faatagi has not yet been cleared to practice full contact. Faatagi, however, may be cleared for that following spring break.

• It's appeared the Buffs have put more time into special teams this spring, but that's not so, Hawkins said. "We did it a lot last year, but the thing that's nice this year is guys have more of a clue so you're kind of at a different level of teaching. You're not coming right from the base."

• Hawkins didn't like the tempo of practice at one point Tuesday so he halted it and let the players know they were dogging it. They responded, and things even turned a little chippy toward the end in a scrimmage situation.

• In that scrimmage situation, Bernard Jackson caught a touchdown pass from Cody Hawkins. It's looking like the coaches are developing a "slash" role for the senior. "He'll be able to contribute in a lot of areas," Dan Hawkins said. "He's one of the guys on the team who's most electric with the ball in his hands. It doesn't take him out of the quarterback spot, but you look at he and probably Hugh (Charles) are the two most dynamic players with the ball in their hands, so you've got to figure out ways to get it to them."

• New CU quarterback Nick Nelson said he feels like he's picking things up, but realizes he's still making some mental mistakes because of the newness of things. After running out of the shotgun at Saddleback CC for two seasons, he's also adjusting to playing under center.

"It's not necessarily harder, it's just different," he said.

Hawkins had this to say when asked about Nelson's camp: ""He's doing well. He's got that complex that all the great ones have. We keep adding stuff and throwing stuff at him. He's got all the skills to be a great football player—he's smart, he's talented, but part of his competitiveness gets the best of him a little bit right now because he thinks every throw is life and death, and it's not right now."

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