First things first, check out this awesome video on Saturday's practice/scrimmage. The social media team has really stepped it up this year!
Now, moving on to Practice #9...
One of Chris Ash's many changes has been media availability, as he has signifigantly reduced media access. Ash has only been allowing the media one hour of access once a week and has been selecting one position coach to talk to them after selective practices. Today was cornerbacks coach Aaron Henry's day to talk to the media and all the focus was on his position group today.
The cornerbacks, however, are one position group with definite continuity from 2015. Once again, Blessuan Austin and Isaiah Wharton will be the two starters. However, this Spring they are the only scholarship cornerbacks practicing. Jarius Adams is currently out with an injury and Charles Snorweah is absent due to academic reasons. In addition, Ronnie James has switched positions to safety, where Aaron Henry sees a brighter future for the brother of former Rutgers HB Paul James.
That leaves Henry to coach Wharton and Austin then a slew of walk-ons. However, he has admitted there isn't much scheme coaching to do, as he is actually COACHING IN A WAY THAT BENEFITS THE STRENGTHS OF HIS PLAYERS. IMAGINE THAT. Austin and Wharton average out at 6-1 200, which is a big-body for a cornerback. Henry is implementing press man coverage for these two because it allows them to use their biggest advantage, their bodies. It is such a simple concept but yet it didn't happen once last year.
While watching Henry talk about this, I had a huge grin on my face but at the same time got sick to my stomach thinking about all the cover 6 crap the defense ran last year, which was the worst absolute way to utilize two raw freshmen at cornerback. However, Henry, a former DB himself, has recognized the natural gifts of these two and is working with them to become All-B1G caliber DBs.
Henry also talked about the influence Chris Ash has had on him and how he is arguably the best DB coach in the country. Henry specifically noted that "if I can take half of what Coach Ash is trying to teach â just half â and the sky is limit". Henry is clearly appreciative and motivated by his position with the team and is really trying to soak in everything he can from Chris Ash, who is without a doubt his main mentor.
Here are a couple of great reads about Assistant DBs coach Aaron Henry:
Why Chris Ash once lived with a Rutgers assistant coach
Class act: UW's Henry a rare breed on the field and off