We got to see some more of the potential FIU has at tight end this season in Monday morning's practice. You can read more about the tight ends by CLICKING HERE.
As you will read in the story on the link above, with the new pro-style offense FIU is expected to make more use of the tight ends than it has in years past in the spread offense. The Panthers have some good athletes at tight end this season and Monday showed that, especially in the two-minute drill.
Before the two-minute drill, freshman tight end Jonathan Pavlov had a good day catching passes in 7-on-7s from freshman quarterback Israel Paopao, who fit some passes in some tight windows on Monday.
Coach Ron Turner effusively praised the tight ends after Monday's practice. Turner spoke of how well Cory White, the transfer from across town, has performed run blocking and catching the ball. Turner added Jonnu Smith is "going to be something special". At just 17 years old, Smith (turns 18 on Thursday) is the complete package at tight end with his size (6-2, 225) and speed. Smith can also block as evidenced by his work as a fullback out of the backfield along with Zach Schaubhut.
During the two-minute drill, the situation was the offense was down 12-10 with 55 seconds left and the ball at the offense's 35.
Jake Medlock marched the first team down the field. Medlock scrambled from pressure on first down and hit De'Andre Jasper for 24 yards on the left sideline. Medlock followed that by connecting with Smith for 25 yards to the defense's 12. Sam Miller came on a corner blitz on the play as Smith sprinted to the right sideline for the catch.
Kicker Sergio Sroka, who appears to be the leader in the kicking competition, was good from 29 yards out to give the offense a 13-12 lead. Again, only Sroka and Austin Taylor got the opportunities on Monday among the four placekickers with Taylor getting an attempt blocked by Lars Koht.
The second team defense stopped the second team offense short of field goal range to end practice.