Monday, April 30, 2007

Spring Practice: Special Teams

When asked about special teams at the start of the Spring, Dorrell had this to say, "Our specialists? To me that's a big issue. We had a pretty darn good kicker the past few years (in Justin Medlock). We have a good, young kicker right now in Kai Forbath. That's always a challenge for your first-year kicker to replace an All-American. Kai's going to have to come through for us and he knows that. He's very talented but it's one of those things -- it's a trade what they do. We're looking to put him under some pressure this spring because he's going to have to get used to it."

After about a week, Dorrell said he wasn't as pleased with the kicking game as the rest of the units. Kai Forbath was wide left on a number of attempts and he struggled with consistency. The right-footed kicker was having trouble when lined up on the left hash mark.

"That was disappointing," Dorrell said. "We wanted to see if on the spur of the moment they could hit those field goals. We have to keep testing our kickers."

Perez was more consistent and improved this spring then in previous years. The punter has increased his average distance each season and he looked good during punt return drills. He still struggles with the occasional shank, but much better than where he was this time last year.

Christian Yount is already looking good as a long snapper. His snaps were timed at one practice and all were under 0.9 seconds with most in the 0.75 to 0.82 range. Apparently he has added some size. He is a polished long snapper and it is apparent he has developed his technique over the years. It was reported that a graduate assistant was helping him with his footwork post snap.

Spring Game

Kicker Kai Forbath connected on two of three field goals, missing one from short range, including a long of 27 yards. Jimmy Rotstein was 3-for-3 with a long of 34 yards.

(sources: Daily Bruin, Bruin Gold, LA times)