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Spring game

The Red versus Blue game now concludes the 2018 Spring Training period who will resume practice this upcoming fall.

The Red versus Blue game now concludes the 2018 Spring Training period who will resume practice this upcoming fall.

Briana Cunningham

Briana Cunningham

The Red versus Blue game now concludes the 2018 Spring Training period who will resume practice this upcoming fall.

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The University of South Alabama football team concluded spring training with the iHeartRadio Red versus Blue Spring Game on April 14.

Two days before the game, however, the Jaguar football program received a shock when fifth-year senior quarterback Dallas Davis announced his intentions to leave the team.

Last season, Davis split starts with fellow Junior Cole Garvin, and was the Jags’ most efficient passer with a 57.1 completion percentage and eight touchdowns in nine appearances.

Davis was unavailable to comment on his reason for leaving the team, however in an interview with WJGH News Davis said he fully intends to transfer and play for another institution this fall.

As a fifth-year who has already graduated from USA, Davis has the ability to transfer to another school and play as a graduate transfer.

Davis’s decision leaves junior Cole Garvin, junior Evan Orth and freshman Cephus Johnson all jockeying for the starting job.

Johnson got the call for the spring game leading the Jaguar’s first string offense onto the field.

“It’s a big step, but me and my teammates worked real hard to get here,” Johnson said about getting the start. “It was fun, we went out there and competed.”

The freshman set to work putting together an early touchdown drive, capped off with a 44-yard touchdown pass caught by junior wide receiver Jamarius Way. Johnson finished out his time on the field with a fourth quarter touchdown pass to freshman wide receiver Kawaan Baker. Johnson was 9-12 for 126 yards and two touchdowns making him the Jaguar’s most productive passer in the game.

Garvin split the first string snaps with Johnson during the game. Garvin is the only potential Jaguar starter who has started a regular season game at the collegiate level.

Garvin played in eight games last season for the Jags, he had a 52.6 completion percentage posting 1,490 passing yards and seven touchdowns.

In the spring game, Garvin struggled completing only three of his eight passes for only 98 yards and one touchdown.

68 of Garvin’s 98 passing yards came when he hit a short pass to Baker with 11:22 to go in the first half. Baker then broke several tackles and dashed down the field for the score in the longest play of the game.

Orth lead the second string offense for most of the game, connecting on eight of his 13 passes for 72 yards. “I thought the decision making was good,” head coach Steve Campbell said of the quarterback play.

“There were some explosive plays, Cephus hit the deep ball early that got us going and he hit another on that last drive, he threw the ball well down the field. I thought Cole did some good things, and Evan had some cards stacked against him with the second offense going against the one defense but he handled things well to not put his group in a bad situation. I was pleased with the quarterback play, but I need to watch the film to see where we are at.”

One of the biggest changes in the Jaguar offense this season is the implementation of the tripleoption running style. The Jaguar running game was explosive in the Spring Game with 22 carries for 135 yards and a touchdown.

The Jaguar offensive line is a point of concern for the upcoming season. The Jags came into the spring game with only nine healthy bodies spread across five offensive line positions.

“I think those guys have adjusted well,” Campbell said about the offensive line. “I am really proud of the offensive line because we finished the spring with nine healthy bodies. Those guys fought their behinds off all spring. Today I had three guards play four positions, they weren’t getting a whole lot of rest but they got a lot of reps; they’ve been doing that all spring. I’m really pleased with the way that the offensive line is progressing, we have a long way to go but I like the way those guys are working and pulling together facing adversity. Those nine guys didn’t tap out when the could’ve at any point in time. Normally you are hopefully three deep on the offensive line, we weren’t even two deep.”

The first string defense excelled in the game shutting out the second string offense and posting a dominant performance, after adjusting to a new system.

The Red versus Blue game now concludes the 2018 Spring Training period who will resume practice this upcoming fall. T

he Jags will kick of the 2018 season on Sept. 1 at Ladd Peebles Stadium against the Louisiana Tech Bulldogs.

To stay up to date on Jaguar football checkout the Vanguard Facebook page @TheVangaurdUSA or go to the Vanguard Website

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