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On the topic of reshirts, I found the articles about USC and LSU in the college football SI very interesting. I'm not sure how Tressel does things, but Saban and Carrol both mention that they don't tell the kids they're going to be redshirtted going into the season, even if they know they are. Why? To get the most out of the younger guys early in the season. If a player knows he's not going to get any PT, it's not hard to realize that they're not going to go 100% everyday. This not only hinders their development, but also those that they're practicing against everyday. I've heard comments from our players in the past where they've indicated they didn't give it their all because they knew they weren't going to play. Santonio Holmes is one that comes to mind. After his breakout at IU last year he admitted that he hadn't been practicing as hard as he should have been. Jay Richardson, in a premium BN article basically said the same thing about the past two years.
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I understand about not telling true freshmen that the are going to redshirt to get them to work harder, but I can't understand why anyone who can play (holmes and richardson) wouldn't work hard to try to show the coaches what they can do in practice. If I remember correctly Zwick earned some PT last year because he was looking good in practice.
Personally I was about to have my scholarship pulled after my 4th year because the coaches didn't think I would ever play. All it took was me doing a good job filling in for our right tackle in practice once to earn some 4th quarter PT in the next game. The next week I was in the starting lineup. I guess the moral is that if you don't practice hard you won't ever get a chance.
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I don't know what it is. Maybe being buried in the depth chart starts to take its toll on you mentally. When you have a Will Smith in front of you, the game reps are going to be very limited and they know it.
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