Courtesy: Texas Southern Athletics

Houston, TX-The Texas Southern Tigers wrapped up their spring training today with their spring game at Alexander Durley Stadium on TSU’s campus.
The new TSU offense squared off against the defending TSU 2011 FCS top defense before dozens of supporters, alumni and fans.  The game was setup on a point system where the offense got six points for a touchdown and three points for a field goal.  The defense received three points when they forced the offense to punt and five points for a turnover or a stop on a fourth down.  The defense won 32 -6 and head coach Darrell Asberry was not happy with the outcome.

“Today they came out flat. In my eyes they walked; they loafed and I know we’re a much better football team than that,” Asberry said. “The kids can get it done, because I’ve watch them do it all spring.”

Asberry said it was the effort by the offense that disappointed him most.

“Over on the sideline, he sees it best. If he says the effort was lacking, then the effort was lacking, “said senior quarterback Riko Smalls.  “What we need to do as players is dig deeper and respond.”

The defense played well, and Asberry credits the coaches for getting the best out of those guys.

“The defense has been flying around all season that was the reason to kept Coach Ramsey… for chemistry on the defensive side of the ball,” Asberry said.  “The linebackers are still a concern, but he just does a great job of disguising a couple of our weakness.  The coaching staff is doing a great job over there.”

Asberry is confident that the team will get to where it needs to be.  He says it seems that they just had an off day, but that’s a situation he says is not acceptable.

“It’s been great all spring, but today wasn’t our day offensively.  Hopefully they will use the words that I expressed to motivate them.  They don’t have a choice; they have to get motivated because September 1st is just around the corner.”

“I think that we struggled with consistency on the offensive side of the ball today. But we are going to look at the tape and we’ll get better and correct those coming into next season,” said Smalls.

The Tigers will start the 2012 season against Prairie View A&M in the State Farm Labor Day Classic on September 1st.
Quotes from: Quarterback Riko Smalls

The Offense seemed to struggle today.  What would you say was the reason?
“I wouldn’t point to one thing in particular because when you have success or failure there are a lot of reasons that go into that final product.  We saw some promising things today.  I think that we struggled with consistency on the offensive side of the ball today.  But we are going to look at the tape and we’ll get better and correct those coming into next season.”

Coach Asberry says the offense showed a lack of effort today.  What’s your response?
“Over on the sideline, he sees it best. If he says the effort was lacking, then the effort was lacking.  And what we need to do as players is dig deeper and respond.”

The offense has been in three different systems over the past year.  Could that be a contributing factor?
“Ya’ll can use that as an excuse but I don’t see it as an excuse.  At the end of the day, come September 1st, you got to be prepared no matter what adversity you’ve had at the university.  We are not the only team that’s not had the luxury of being in the same offense the last four or five years.  Of course that helps because you get to understand the system rather just knowing the plays, but we are going to have more time this year than we did last year because going into last year all we had was training camp.  At least we have the luxury of a spring…we had some meetings and we’ll be able to have more chemistry and more hands on with the coaches which will pay off a lot.”

How big of a difference is that in your development as a team?
“Times a million…any time you can get more time, because that’s one thing you can’t buy really is time, it’s just a blessing because you get to work with each other, you get to know each other, you get to learn and understand and really know.  We’re still at the beginning stages of our offense.  We haven’t scratched the surface of even our potential.  I see some promising things; we just have to put it all together.”



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