Defense shines in ETSU’s first spring scrimmage

JOHNSON CITY, TN- The ETSU football team put the finishing touches on a productive opening week of spring practice by holding its first scrimmage on Saturday morning at the outdoor practice fields.



  • The Buccaneer defense totaled 83 tackles (11 for loss), eight sacks, 10 quarterback hurries and seven pass break ups, while forcing six fumbles (two recoveries) and one interception
  • Red-shirt freshman linebacker Dylan Weigel (Pickerington, Ohio) – who led the FCS in solo tackles in 2015 (7.2 per game) – paced the Blue and Gold with eight tackles on Saturday … Weigel also had a tackle for loss, one quarterback hurry and a fumble recovery
  • Freshman defensive lineman Nasir Player (Columbia, S.C.) ended with five tackles (two for loss), two sacks and forced two fumbles (one recovery)
  • Freshman safety Christian Gibson (Bristol, Tenn.) had the 25-yard interception return to go with three tackles
  • Red-shirt freshman linebacker Trey Quillin (New Albany, Ohio) registered five tackles (two for loss), two sacks, two QB hurries and forced a fumble
  • Joining Quillin and Player with five tackles were red-shirt sophomore defensive linemen Royce Turnbull (Charlotte, N.C.) and Ferguierson Charles (Fort Myers, Fla.)
  • Freshman linebacker Jason Maduafokwa (Seymour, Tenn.) and junior defensive back Tavian Lott (D’Lo, Miss.), along with transfers Paul Hunter (Denton, Texas) and Jackson Trawick (Suwanee, Ga.) all totaled four tackles each … Trawick also forced a fumble

“It felt good,” said ETSU linebacker Austin Gatewood. “I know we forced three turnovers and when you can get three turnovers that’s always good. Everyone’s anxious to come out here in full pads and go full-go and scrimmage but I think everyone’s excited.”

“Gotta do a better job of ball security,” said ETSU head coach Carl Torbush. “Snaps have got to be better.”


  • Offensively, the Bucs totaled 492 yards (316 passing/176 rushing) and scored three touchdowns
  • Red-shirt freshman Hank Black (Knoxville, Tenn.) led the receivers with four catches for 122 yards, including a 75-yard touchdown reception from freshmanDylan Wieger (Kingsport, Tenn.)
  • Wieger also connected on a 50-yard touchdown strike to newcomer Vincent Lowe (Chesapeake, Va.) … Lowe – who transferred in from Old Dominion at the break – also had one rushing attempt for nine yards
  • Red-shirt sophomore running back Falon Lee (Macclenny, Fla.) paced the running backs with nine carries for 45 yards and also found the end zone on a five-yard score
  • Freshman wide receiver Jack Shoulders (Nashville, Tenn.) recorded a team-high five receptions (43 yards)
  • Wieger and freshman quarterback Matt Williams (Newton, N.C.) combined to complete 16 of 30 passes for 294 yards … Wieger finished 7-for-13 for 197 yards and two touchdowns, while Williams went 9-for-17 for 97 yards
  • Fellow quarterback Chris Howard (Gainesville, Ga.) completed three passes for 22 yards and had eight carries for 43 yards
  • Red-shirt freshman running back Matt Thompson (Morristwon, Tenn.) averaged 4.3 yards on six rushing attempts

“We played the young ones today,” said Torbush. “Chris Howard, Matt Williams, Dylan Weiger to give them reps and I thought they all did some nice things. Obviously they made some mistake that they’ll get better at, but it’ll help us be a better football team. All three of them have some ability and made some things happen, so that was a good situation for us.”


Freshman kicker Landon Kunak (Spartanburg, S.C.) made his two PATs, while he also connected on a 30-yard field goal attempt

Courtesy: ETSU Athletics

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