Of Summerville's six-year defensive coordinator Sean Leveroos, Bears head coach Ben Watson says, "He brings so much energy to our program in so many different ways. Sean is also the main guy in terms of breaking down film - he does it better than anybody. He's got carte blanche on the defensive end for us. He is inspirational to our team and does a great job with our defense. He's a huge, huge part of everything we do." Summerville hosts Castlemont on Friday. Leveroos talked with sports reporter Allan Mandell after Wednesday's practice-Editor.
UD: How have practices been this week?
SL: Morale is up. Everyone is healthy. Practices have been good. Details are being dialed into.
UD: Coach, how were you able to contain Denair - a team that averaged close to 100 yards via air - to just three completions for 25 yards last week?
SL: With the Wing-T that Denair runs, if they can establish their running game, then that opens up their passing game. Against us, our cornerbacks didn't have to get actively involved against their running game, so they didn't bite on the play-action. That was all because our front six did a really good job with their run.
UD: Who stood out to you on defense vs. Denair?
SL: The one player we were really excited about was Zac Dollarhide. We put him into our inside linebacker mix and he played so well. He had a tough week - he lost his grandmother earlier in the week. Then he returns the opening kickoff for a touchdown and kept on playing well on defense.
Simon Falbe (defensive back), when he had his opportunities, was throwing his body around. He's a conversation topic amongst us coaches now.
Matt Moorhead (linebacker) played good. He led the team in tackles (14) - and that's how our defense is designed. If everyone is doing their job right, the inside linebacker should have the most tackles and the past few weeks that's been the case.
Moorhead comes to film study every single day. He cares. He does a good job with set recognition. He's always out there on scout-defense. He understands formation and alignment.
UD: Is there any theme that's been preached to the players this week?
SL: In John Wooden's book, there's a quote by Piggy Lambert: "We're gonna be brilliant at the basics." That's what we want - let's go back to fundamentals.
Assignments, stances and reading our keys. That's what we're pushing for and preaching about - make our fundamentals solid. Alignments, stances, keys.
UD: With three games played, who has been your most pleasant surprise so far?
SL: Most pleasant surprise ... Joseph Langi. We recently moved him into an outside safety position and he's shown a real knack for that spot. He's dedicated. He makes film studies above and beyond what's required. He has made the most of his opportunities.
UD: How would you grade out your front four over these first three weeks?
SL: Overall, I still think the front four is the strength of our team. There's lots of depth and not a lot of drop-off when we sub.
Darren Vallelunga has a motor that is very impressive. Tyler Oliver's strength makes him so hard to block. (D-Line) Coach (Kurt) Bayers is raving about getting Mitch Olson back into the rotation. The Bruno brothers (Danny Brunolli, Robbie Brunolli) do everything you ask the first time you ask it. Cole Busch has had some really physical collisions with opponents.
SL: I'll have to reserve the assessment on that group until after this week. However, the skill set I'm most fond of in Trevor Larsson (middle linebacker) is that he doesn't play on skates - he doesn't get pushed backwards.
We've moved Tanner Krieg from linebacker to D-line. I found out he played D-line in Pop Warner.
UD: With Tanner's speed, can he be like a Tyler Byington (class of 2010)?
SL: Yes. I can see in some situations where Vallelunga and Krieg would be the bookends on the line and we'd be getting some speed there and then get our team-beef in there for running situations - the Bruno brothers and Cole.
It will all depend on what our opponent is doing best.
UD: Before the season started, you said the corner position was the biggest question mark. How do you feel now?
SL: The corners are still being judged. We've put Dalton Day out there. It was a major loss when Colton Ebbers went down with an injury (opening night vs. Mariposa). So we needed another body there and the kid with the skill set to play that spot is Day. We know he'd rather play free safety.
You put Day in any position group and that unit gets stronger immediately.
Last week, we had the first pick-six by a corner since I've been here coaching (2006). It was good to get a pick-six by Zac Broxham.
UD: Will you be on the field or in the booth this Friday?
SL: I'll be back up there in the booth again. I've been up there the past two weeks.
UD: When you're in the booth, who are you communicating with?
SL: I'm speaking with Coach (Matt) Soto and Coach (Nick) Parry. Coach Soto gets the front call and Coach Parry gets the back call and then they each signal into their units which plays to be run.
UD: Which place do you prefer?
SL: I would always prefer to be on the sidelines. As far as the experience goes, there's nothing like being on the sidelines. But as far as what is best to help this team, I'm best suited to be up in the booth right now.