By Leo Haggerty

South Florida opens its season this Saturday at Raymond James Stadium against Elon.  That signifies the culmination of fall practice and the beginning of game week activities.

Caught up with my old friend and former Bucs coach and current Wide Receivers Coach Charlie Williams.  Has some very interesting comments to my questions to say the least

All shots provided by Photo Journalist Trace Crisp.  Enjoy.

LH : Is there a difference in coaching pro wide receivers than college wide receivers?

CW : Pro wide receivers are very balanced.  They are trying to make the team.  They won’t do anything that would hurt their chances of making the team.  On the college level, these guys know first-hand that they can go from first to second really quick.  That’s the difference that I see right now.

LH : When you look at your wide receiver group, fourth option isn’t too bad, is it?

CW : Not at all.  In fact, they don’t know right now who is one through four.  We try to keep them guessing but, with this week starting game week, we’re going to have to make some decisions.

LH : When you look at your offense, have you ever been involved with a unit that goes this fast?

CW : This is the fastest I have ever seen especially when they’re humming.  From the time you catch the ball and then get to the line of scrimmage is really fast.  It’s fun to watch.  Coach Gilbert gets these guys after practice and goes over the 20 plays that we like to run so we’re really ready to go with those.

LH : For your guys, is there any difference between the quarterbacks at all?

CW : When it comes to the quarterbacks, they can all throw the ball and they can all throw the ball really well.  Like I’ve told you guys before, whichever one that is out there will be excited to play.  It doesn’t matter who it is for us.

LH : When your wide receivers are running their routes, are there any option routes or are they all predetermined?

CW : Let me just say we have a little bit of both.  There are variations to our offense so we do have a little bit of both.

LH : Are you now the old man of the staff?

CW (Laughter) I sure am.  I sure am.  I’m the old man of the staff and it’s the first time that I’ve been the old man of the staff on all the staffs that I’ve been on. So, yes, I’m the old man of the staff.

LH : In your room, do you point to Valdes-Scantling and say if you work this hard, you can get to the next level?

CW : What we told them was that Valdes was playing on special teams.  We keep on harping on special teams.  We want these guys to understand that, if you’re not a first rounder in the National Football League, you need to know how to play on special teams or you will not last very long.  We pointed it out.  We showed them how Valdes ran a kickoff return back.  Then we showed them how he caught 5 balls for 107 yards in the first game.  The next game he only caught one ball but had 25 yards on returns.  The stuff we’re hearing from Green Bay is that Aaron Rodgers likes Valdes.  If Rodgers doesn’t like you, then he doesn’t have much to say about you.  Now, don’t quote me on this but that’s what we are hearing.

LH : When it comes to McCants, what’s it like coaching a bowling ball that can run?

CW : (Laughter) Now I love that. You called him a bowling ball that can run.  I have never coached a guy that big that could run.  He’s as strong as an ox.  It’s really hard to bring him down.  I’ve never seen a guy like him and, as you all know, I’ve coached in a lot of places.  He’s so strong.  He’s exceptional.