Cornerback Coach Sharrieff Shah Has Some Fun While Talking Position Group Progress
SALT LAKE CITY- Cornerback coach Sharrieff Shah was in great spirits during Thursday’s media availability talking about the strides his young, albeit talented group have been making through spring. After being lit up by Ohio State’s stellar offense, Shah and his crew have gone back to the drawing board and according to him, guys are getting better.
Man Coverage And Tackles
“These boys have bought in so fully and completely,” Shah said. “The thing that has been the focus is- I need to see people be better in man coverage. We have to be better in man coverage. I mean, listen, if God blesses us to get back to the Rose Bowl, we have got to play some man coverage. I don’t care who is out there.”
“That’s getting better,” Shah continued. “I’ve seen it across the board. They have a long way to go, but that has made me happy- and tackling. Again, you go back to the last game we played and we missed so many tackles. That has been the emphasis on the defense- particularly my room.”
So far, J.T. Broughton who went down last season during the BYU game with injury has been making strides to looking like his old self. This is positive news since it is likely he will start opposite Clark Phillips III.
“The first two practices he was very sluggish,” coach Shah said. “He had put on weight and I wanted him to get stronger, but it just was not weight that was good for him. After today’s sixth practice he looks so much better. So much more reactionary. He is strong. We had a little bit of live work the other day and he made such a good tackle on Tavion [Thomas]. Tavion- that boy is not nice to tackle.”
Another guy who has come a long way according to Shah is Caine Savage.
“Caine Savage has taken big step,” coach Shah said. “He’s continuing to take good steps forward. I’ve seen more physicality out of him.”
Even guys like Phillips III who has already generated NFL buzz are being pushed by Shah to get even better. Ultimately, Shah just wants to see Phillips III grow into the leader the defense needs.
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“For Clark, he has a tremendous work ethic,” coach Shah said. “Why don’t you instill that in everyone else? Bring people along. Every day he’s doing something by himself to get better. He needs to set a standard in this room because he is an older player.”
Best Part Of Spring Ball
Shah says one of his favorite parts of spring ball is being able to watch defensive coordinator Morgan Scalley push the unit to its limits. The Utes are always known for tough defense that will not quit, and some of the tough training in spring may be a good reason why they are relentless, smart, nasty, ball hawks come fall.
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“Coach Scalley, he ain’t nothing nice to play with in spring time,” coach Shah said. “He is not nice, boy, and I love it. I love it because fall camp you cannot grind as hard as in spring with the backdrop of having a game to be played. There are no reservations on how many gassers you can run, how many burpees and up-downs you can do. So 100, 200, I’m fine…until people start loosing feeling in their arms.”
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