Nearly every football practice this spring has produced one big play. On Tuesday, that play belonged to running back Chris Nwoke.
The redshirt freshman carried the ball four times for 102 yards in a live-tackling period. Seventy of those yards came from one run he busted up the middle.
â€œHe busted some runs. Chris is a very talented in-line runner and has the ability to break tackles,â€ said head coach Steve Fairchild. â€œChris reminds me of Kevin McDougal and guys we had in the past that are real power guys that dish it out. Itâ€™s almost like theyâ€™re tackling the tackler.â€
Freshman quarterback Pete Thomas went 3-6 for 58 yards during the live period in which the offense won 13-12 in overtime.
Thomas and Nico Ranieri took the majority of snaps at quarterback, but sophomore M.J. McPeek got a few plays in. Fairchild said they plan on working him into the rotation a bit this week.
T.J. Borcky spent the entire practice at receiver.
On the defensive side of the ball, junior cornerback Momo Thomas picked off a Ranieri pass for his first interception of the spring.
â€œIâ€™m happy to finally get that one out of the way. Iâ€™ve been waiting for that one,â€ Thomas said.
A two-year starter, Thomas is a veteran in the secondary, and with Nick Oppenneerâ€™s absence, he is the leader of a young cornerback group.
â€œI wanted to be a leader. Iâ€™ve just got to step up vocally and make more plays on the field,â€ Thomas said.
The offense was without tight end Eric Peitz, who broke his right-hand middle finger Saturday after colliding with safety Elijah-Blu Smith.
â€œI think it was smashed between our helmets,â€ Peitz said. â€œRight away I knew something was wrong.â€
Part of the tip of his finger was separated, and doctors set the bone back in place and stitched it up. Fairchild said they will keep him out for about a week. Peitz is expected to get X-ray results Friday.
Tuesdayâ€™s practice was linebacker Mychal Sissonâ€™s last of the spring. The junior is expected to miss the remainder of the spring drills after he undergoes minor shoulder surgery, a procedure scheduled before spring practice began. He is expected to be back in action when the Rams open fall camp in August.
Football Beat Reporter Stephen Meyers can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.