Speedier Tank Being Developed|
Aug. 12, 2008
REBEL CAMP 2008 - Watch out for Frank "The Tank" Summers this fall.
That's the message storming down from the practice field at the UNLV football team's off-campus preseason training camp.
Summers (Oakland, CA/Skyline HS/Laney College) was Tuesday's offensive Black Jersey honoree after a dominating two-a-day performance on Monday. The senior big man rushed for 928 yards during his first year with the Rebels last fall while becoming the first player in school history to lead UNLV in both rushing touchdowns (six) and receiving scores (four) in the same season. However, a slimmer and trimmer Tank is set on an even bigger campaign in 2008. Having dropped down to about 230 pounds, Summers says he feels great.
"The last time I had this extra step was during my first year at junior college when I led the nation in touchdowns," he says, smiling. "I appreciate being honored with the Black Jersey but I pride myself in working hard every day. I'm a firm believer that hard work pays off. I'm looking forward to getting this season going."
The defensive Black Jersey winner for Tuesday was Malo Taumua (Honolulu/Aiea HS), who repeated the honor for the second straight day to further illustrate his impressive preseason.
"Frank did a bunch of things right and played hard and played fast on Monday," said UNLV head coach Mike Sanford. "Malo is showing a lot of consistency to get it two straight days. He's highly motivated out there and it shows up on film day in and day out."
BLACK JERSEY WINNER Aug. 10: DB Geoffery Howard & WR Ryan Wolfe Aug. 11: DL Malo Taumua & OL Matt Murphy Aug. 12: DL Malo Taumua & RB Frank Summers
NEW RETURN MEN?
The Rebels practiced in the morning for 22 periods to complete the day's only session, which included two rounds of situational scrimmaging. The practice ended on a high note when Sanford said the players could avoid their normal conditioning drills if three select players successfully caught punts thrust high into the air by an electric jugs machine.
First to try was junior offensive lineman Joe Hawley (Yorba Linda, CA/Esperanza HS), who fielded the football easily and sailed into the end zone. Next up was sophomore defensive lineman Preston Brooks (Los Angeles/Dorsey HS), who skillfully moved to his left to haul in the punt and quickly hit paydirt.
The pressure was on 6-3, 290-pound sophomore offensive lineman John Gianninoto (Tucson, AZ/Catalina Foothills HC), who had the trickiest boot to corral. "Gio" made a nifty last-second move to handle the pigskin from high above and celebrated by running through the end zone and right toward the locker room.
The team will hold meetings and a light walk-through this evening before staging another two-a-day on Wednesday. UNLV is scheduled to hold a full team scrimmage on Saturday morning and continue to practice off campus until returning to Las Vegas on Aug. 19.