August 23, 2010

Borland impressive during morning practice

MADISON - Folks knowledgeable of Big Ten football know a thing or two about Chris Borland. They would likely be able to tell you he's a dynamic threat both with various special teams units and as an outside linebacker.

He's got a nose for the ball and a knack for dramatic flair. He's quite simply empirical evidence that some people are born to belong on the gridiron.

During Monday's morning practice during Wisconsin's final day with two practices, it was like Borland elevated his game to an even higher level.

Whether it was the fact that the Big Ten Network was in attendance or more likely, he's starting to hit a stride with the season less than two weeks away, Borland was a nuisance for the offensive line and quarterback all morning long.

It seemed throughout team drills that Borland was consistently in the backfield and behind Josh Oglesby before the junior right tackle was able to get out of his stance.

"I'm a little quicker," Borland explained when asked about his speed work during the off-season. "I haven't timed anything, but I definitely feel good."

Conceivably, had this been an actual game situation, Borland would have probably had four or five sacks where he had free reign on the quarterback. The show he put on was truly fun to watch. As far as practice MVP's go, Borland is at the top of my list.

Updates:

-David Gilreath sat out Monday's morning practice. It was unclear as to what his ailment was, but considering his play the scrimmage Saturday afternoon, it was likely precautionary.

-Isaac Anderson, who took a big hit towards the end of Saturday's scrimmage, did not practice Monday morning.

-Bill Nagy, who left Saturday's scrimmage, did not practice Monday morning. The offensive line was shifted around a bit to fill in his void. Travis Frederick played left guard with the No. 1 offense, Peter Konz played center and John Moffitt played right guard.

-Jordan Kohout returned to practice and was playing with the No. 1 defensive line.

-Blake Sorensen participated in the entirety of Monday's morning practice.

Johnson making the most:

With Jay Valai still sidelined with a concussion, sophomore Shelton Johnson is beginning to make the most of his opportunity at the strong safety spot.

Today, with the No. 1 offense about to reach pay dirt, Johnson read a Scott Tolzien throw to Nick Toon, jumped the route, picked it off and ran it back for what would have been a touchdown. It was a veteran read from a young player that prevented a touchdown.

Should Valai continue to miss time, it would seem that the coaching staff is starting to feel confident in Johnson's ability to make plays, particularly early in the season with the way the schedule is laid out.

The Badgers return to practice later Monday evening for the final installment of two-a-days.

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