TAMPA, FL - NOVEMBER 25: Linebacker Sam Barrington #36 and coach Skip Holtz of the South Florida Bulls take the field for play against the Louisville Cardinals November 25, 2011 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida. Louisville won 34 - 24. (Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images)
If you're going to the spring game at Raymond James Stadum tomorrow night, here are some things to look for.
1. How is the game being managed? We talked about this some last year, but it seems like there's one public scrimmage where the defenses are handcuffed, and another one where they can do whatever they want. So naturally there's one low-scoring scrimmage (because the defense is always ahead of the offense in spring and early in fall) and one where everyone lights it up (because the defense isn't allowed to match up). Since last week's scrimmage ended 43-35, I'm guessing this will be the everything-goes defensive struggle. If this is a high-scoring game too, we might have some problems in the fall.
2. Who's going to run the ball? One thing you didn't hear a whole lot about from last week's Green and Gold Bowl was the running game. Demetris Murray is pretty much a lock to start. But will Lindsey Lamar really get running back touches in the fall? What about Marcus Shaw? Bradley Battles? Willie Davis? Victor Marc? Someone else? The battle to be the #2 running back is an interesting one.
3. Can anyone step up without Cory Grissom anchoring the defensive line? We found out that Grissom will hopefully be back for fall practice. But what if there's a setback, or it hampers him all season? Who would help fill the void? We should start learning the answer on Saturday. There's going to be lots of opportunities for Elkino Watson, Todd Chandler, Luke Sager, and James Hamilton to get some consideration.
4. Punting. I'm not even going to go into this again. You know how I feel. I'd just be piling on JBK at this point.
5. Everything else that we've known about all spring. Bobby Eveld or Matt Floyd? Can the defensive backs start playing the way Rick Smith wants them to play? Who stands out from the crowd at wide receiver? Can Todd Fitch get his head out of his ass at the goal line? Can everyone get out of the game healthy? Will the Temple Terrace police pull someone over for DWB and bust them before they can make it to the stadium?