Luke's practice report from Tuesday -- with an update on Joel Stave being ruled out for Saturday's spring game -- is up now.
He'll also have a story later this afternoon on redshirt freshman defensive end Chikwe Obasih, who's been one of the breakout stars of the spring. UPDATE: Here's the story on Obasih.
For now, let's dive into some words from Gary Andersen and Melvin Gordon, who hopped on this morning's Big Ten spring football teleconference. We'll have much more to come on the main storylines, but Andersen and Gordon touched on a variety of interesting topics this morning.
That's Michael Deiter, who's filled in a variety of spots on the offensive line due to injuries elsewhere; safety Austin Hudson and quarterback D.J. Gillins
Andersen also says #Badgers spring game will be drills in first half, traditional (read: tackling) in the second.— Bucky's 5th Quarter (@B5Q) April 9, 2014
An interesting format for the spring game. Wisconsin, like most teams, doesn't usually go full-contact for the whole game. Still, especially with Stave out and so much movement still going on on defense, that live second half will be interesting.
#Badgers continue to make tweaks on defense to get maximum speed closer to line, but "we've found some homes" regarding positions.— Bucky's 5th Quarter (@B5Q) April 9, 2014
Andersen on M. Gordon returning: "Huge is probably not a big enough word… He wants to be a leader on the football team and he's done that."— Bucky's 5th Quarter (@B5Q) April 9, 2014
This is huge for Gaulden, who's struggled with injuries for the past few years. The Badgers have a ton of skill, albeit significant inexperience, in that secondary now.
Andersen says J. Stave's lingering shoulder issues are a concern. "The challenge is to truly identify the situation & start rehab process."— Bucky's 5th Quarter (@B5Q) April 9, 2014
You'd think "concern" would be a word Andersen would avoid unless it's really how he feels. There's also still plenty of time until things start counting, so this might not be so serious.
Good QB news: Andersen says Tanner McEvoy has made big progress in understanding offense. "You can see him continue to grow and blossom."— Bucky's 5th Quarter (@B5Q) April 9, 2014
Here's Luke's breakdown of McEvoy's practice on Tuesday:
McEvoy commanded the first-team offense, totaling 14 reps. He was 3-for-5 and hurried once by the defense, but looked composed. An option and quarterback read were called for McEvoy, as well as a designed quarterback run.
Melvin Gordon up now, also echoed Andersen's praise for faster and more athletic defensive line. #Badgers— Bucky's 5th Quarter (@B5Q) April 9, 2014
Gordon says both he & Corey Clement are being split out wide more to help in the passing game. "We have more confidence catching the ball."— Bucky's 5th Quarter (@B5Q) April 9, 2014
Partly out of skill (this goes back to James White's freshman year) and partly out of necessity (you know, the lack of consistent receivers not named Jared Abbrederis), this has become a nice staple of Wisconsin's offense. It also lends credence to the jet sweep we've grown to love with Gordon. If he and Clement are indeed viable receivers, opposing defenses will have so many looks to prepare for.
"Dogfight" is Gordon's expectation for the LSU opener. Says #Badgers know they have to be sharp.— Bucky's 5th Quarter (@B5Q) April 9, 2014
Gordon on the draft: "You've got that feeling if you should stay or you should go. I thought staying was the best decision for me." #Badgers— Bucky's 5th Quarter (@B5Q) April 9, 2014
Melvin Gordon has a CFB Playoff poster on his wall. Getting there is his goal for the season. #Badgers— Bucky's 5th Quarter (@B5Q) April 9, 2014