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Friday, October 05, 2012GLIAC Football: Jones-Quartey demonstrates his versatility
During one segment of football practice Wednesday, Harold Jones-Quartey demonstrated his versatility.
The sophomore wide receiver cut past a defender several times and made catches in the end zone.
Moments later, he switched gears to defense and denied a receiver a touchdown by batting the ball away.
Jones-Quartey came to the University of Findlay as a receiver and has made his share of plays (20 catches, 225 yards) in his career.
But last week against Notre Dame College, the versatile 5-foot-11, 195-pound standout was given a taste of what it's like to play defense. He handled the role well, tallying three tackles in the Oilers' 43-42 double overtime win.
Physically, the challenge of going both ways hasn't taken its toll on Jones-Quartey. He said he is in great shape and the chance to play offense and defense, not to mention time on special teams, has taken him on a trip down memory lane.
"It brings me back to my high school days," Jones-Quartey said. "I'm out here playing football and having fun. The most challenging thing is finding time in practice to work on defense because my coaches don't want to take away from the offense."
If anyone is capable of handling more than one role, though, it's Jones-Quartey.
"From an athletic standpoint, he can play in a bunch of spots on the field," UF head coach Rob Keys said. "It's just a matter of how much can he grasp mentally. He is going 40-50 snaps on offense, 20-25 snaps on defense and 8-10 snaps on special teams. It's hard to find kids like that, but we are grooming him to be a possible two-way starter."
The process isn't easy.
"There is so much you have to learn at your position and then you have to know about the opposition," Keys said. "It's so difficult to become good on both sides of the ball, but you have to put kids in a position to make plays, and you need athletes in those positions."
Jones-Quartey said that he has learned to be more detailed as a receiver when it comes to running routes. Success on defense comes down to one thing.
"You have to be disciplined," Jones Quartey said. "I know a lot about what route tendencies and sometimes I bite too soon. I have to learn to stay on the backpedal and stay disciplined."
The Oilers would love to feel the comfort of another win on Saturday when they host Tiffin University at noon in a Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference encounter at Donnell Stadium.
UF (3-1, 3-1 GLIAC) has dominated the series against the Dragons (1-4, 0-4), winning the last 12 meetings. Tiffin hasn't beaten UF since Bill Clinton was in the White House, winning 31-20 in 1993.
Since joining the GLIAC in 2008, the Dragons have shown promise but few results in the win column. They were beaten 33-27 in double overtime by Malone last week and have lost 42 consecutive conference games.
"When you keep getting pushed back into a corner and pushed back into a corner, you become very tough," Keys said. "I know Tiffin is a tough, hard-nosed football team and they will come out fighting. You worry about teams like that because they will give you everything and then some."
The Dragons relay on a pass-oriented offense dubbed the Air Raid and quarterback James Capello (108 of 171 passing, 965 yards, 6 TDs, 5 INTs).
While Tiffin has yet to score a rushing TD, the Dragons have several threats at receiver, including Obadiah Dykes (24 catches, 302 yards, 2 TDs). Bertram Marks also has two TD catches. Eleven players have caught passes for TU, which averages 307 yards per game, including 219.4 through the air.
Execution will be crucial for the Oilers as well, especially in third-down situations. The Oilers have converted 44 percent of the time and have allowed opponents to convert 54 percent of the time.
Keys said his team needs to do a better job on first and second down. Eleven times against Notre Dame, UF found itself in a third-and-long situation.
The Oilers are averaging 451.5 yards per game, which ranks No. 31 in the nation in total offense. The passing attack, producing 285 yads game, has had a lot to do with UF's success.
UF will be up against a Tiffin defense that gives up 380.8 yards per outing, including 180 through the air. Defensive back Bryan McCorkle leads the Dragons with 36 tackles.
Coach: Gary Goff (2nd season, 1-15)
Record: 1-4 overall, 0-4 Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference
Series: UF leads 19-1.
Key Players: QB James Capello (108-of-171, 965 yards, 6 TDs, 5 INTs); RB Dominique White (62 carries, 266 yards); WR Obadiah Dykes (24 catches, 302 yards, 2 TDs); WR Marcus Beaurem (20, 151); WR Jeremy Armstrong (12, 166 TD); WR Bertram Marks (12, 115, 2 TDs); DB Bryan McCorkle (36 tackles); DL Joseph Collard (34 tackles); DB Mike Virgin (33 tackles); DB Brandon Person (31 tackles, INT); DB Antonio Etter (28 tackles); DE Logan Kaminski (23 tackles); LB Keith Butts (22 tackles).
Noteworthy: Dragons were inside the 38-yard line four times against Malone but were unable to score. ... TU has turned the ball over 12 times and has forced eight turnovers. .. .Dragons have allowed 17 sacks. ... TU's last GLIAC win was Sept. 13, 2008 when it beat Northern Michigan 34-28 in OT. ... Dragons are averaging 87.6 yards rushing yards and allowing 219.4 yards on the ground.
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