WRs shine in spring game

By Sean Ostruszka

In a game for the players to show off their skills, it was a pair of wide receivers who stole the show Saturday.

With the temperature at 34 degrees and winds gusting between 24-34 mph at game time, the annual NIU spring intra-squad scrimmage wasn’t as warm as the coaches would have liked, but it still went off without a hitch.

“I blame [athletic director] Jim Phillips for the change in weather,” NIU coach Joe Novak said with a laugh. “I’m in charge of the weather here and the game was supposed to be on Thursday. Jim changed the date of the game to Saturday, so it’s his fault.”

Despite the smiles and jovial mood after the offense’s 34-0 victory, Novak stressed how the team isn’t ready to play yet.

Though it’s been a productive spring with many of the players stepping forward, there are still 130 days until the season opener at Michigan and NIU has a long way to go to get ready, Novak said.

Throughout the spring, players have been stepping up and standing out to the coaches, but it was receivers Jarret Carter and Greg Turner who showed off during the game.

The junior Carter made his presence felt at the end of the first quarter when he caught a 30-yard pass from Phil Horvath for the first touchdown of the day.

Carter ended the day as the leading receiver with four catches for 102 yards and the touchdown.

But it was the kid who reminded Novak of former Huskie and current San Francisco 49er P.J. Fleck who epitomized what the spring game is all about.

A true freshman, Turner has been making his presence felt all spring after being put on scholarship this semester, Novak said. Turner grey-shirted last semester, paying his own way.

A former basketball star at Driscoll Catholic High School, Turner was second on the team in receiving with four catches for 81 yards and two touchdowns.

“Greg wasn’t highly recruited out of high school because he was labeled as not being real fast,” Novak said. “But he was extremely productive. We took a chance on him and think he’s going to be very productive.”