Here's more from Drinkwitz's radio show. He seemed to elaborate more with Mike Kelly on the radio show than he did with the media on Tuesday.
* Drinkwitz opened discussing inured cornerback Ennis Rakestraw Jr. who suffered a torn ACL during individual drills in Tuesday’s practice. Rakestraw first hurt his knee against Kentucky and missed the next game against Southeast Missouri. “He has really been battling his way back. Great energy, great focus,” Drinkwitz said. “We’re going to get him healthy again.”
* Tuesday was “a spirited practice,” Drinkwitz said. “Good energy, good physicalness. … We were embarrassed with what we put on the field Saturday. The only way to get over that embarrassment is to get back to work.”
* Kelly asked Drinkwitz to identify the biggest challenge his team faces. “Confidence,” he said. “Confidence for both sides of the ball. A confidence we can run the ball when we want to and establish the line of scrimmage. … Defensively, confidence in what we’re doing and how we’re doing it.”
* On his decision to fire D-line coach Jethro Franklin, Drinkwitz said, “It wasn’t improving. We need to see marked improvement and growth. I wasn’t seeing it.”
* Drinkwitz said he wants to see three things develop under the watch of newly promoted D-line coach Al Davis: “I want to see better fundamentals, better pad level, and more aggressive play.”
* The Tigers have done tackling drills every day in practice this week.
* Drinkwitz doesn’t release an injury report until Thursday nights, but he made one exception for a fan’s question from the audience. On the status of receiver Mookie Cooper, Drinkwitz said, “He’s full speed. He’s ready to go. We look forward to him playing. He’s not held back at all. He’s ready to play.”
Cooper sat out the Tennessee game while nursing a foot injury suffered in preseason camp.
* On Connor Bazelak’s game-ending interception at Boston College, Drinkwitz said, “I don’t fault the decision. I knew what he was trying to do. He just didn’t execute.” Drinkwitz said Bazelak had more issues Saturday against Tennessee. “We can’t throw the ball over the middle of the field when we’re getting pressure. Sometimes you have to take the sack.”
* Drinkwitz called right guard Case Cook the toughest player on the team after he came back from his injury but was showed some rust against the Vols.