CSURAMS.COM Spring Notebook: Johnson looking to build upon record-setting bowl game - Colorado State University Official Athletic Site Colorado State University Official Athletic Site - Football
Spring Notebook: Johnson looking to build upon record-setting bowl game

April 18, 2017

by Grant Larson
Athletics Communications

FORT COLLINS, Colo.-- The Colorado State Rams began their final week of spring camp with their 13th practice on Tuesday afternoon. Head coach Mike Bobo gave a clear message to his team heading into the week—an expectation that they would have the best week of practice of any team in the country.

“We need to have the best week of practice in the country,” Bobo said. “Not just the best practice for us of spring practice, but the best week in the country. That’s what I’m looking for. It’s the last week of spring practice, the Spring Game is coming up… then you get a break. It’s easy to kind of focus on that, but let’s focus on what we need to do this week.”

After practice, Bobo praised junior wide receiver Olabisi Johnson as the Rams’ most consistent performer of spring ball, pointing back to his school-record-setting performance in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl as a possible catalyst.

"If I were to name a guy that has been day-in and day-out the most consistent, the guy that is working towards the standard that we talk about at practice, ‘Bisi’ would be that guy on offense for us,” Bobo said. “He made big play after big play in the bowl game. I thought Bisi did outstanding and will only continue to get better."

On the other end of Johnson’s breakout game in December was quarterback Nick Stevens, and Bobo is equally as excited about the strides that his senior signal-caller has taken this spring after regaining his starting position midway through the 2016 season and flourishing over the second half of the season.

“I talked about this a lot last year… when he came back, he took the reins,” Bobo said. “That has been the same approach for him this spring. You see a guy that communicates with his players, and knows more about how he wants things and where he expects them to be. You see a confident guy. He has always done a good job in the run game, getting us in the right play, but he has performed extremely well throwing the ball and improved last year and this spring.”

The Rams will hold their final practice before Saturday’s annual Spring Game on Thursday afternoon in shells. Follow @CSUFootball on Twitter and check CSURams.com for exclusive coverage and content.

McBride a model of toughness
As a true freshman, Toby McBride led the Rams’ defensive line with 32 tackles, and his team-leading 4.0 sacks were most by a true freshman in school history. Toby has not rested upon these accolades through a grueling spring season though, as Bobo pointed to him as one of the toughest and hardest-working players on the field this spring.

“We talk about a standard of excellence,” Bobo said. “How you reach that is everyday being consistent and having the same approach. Toby is a model of our standard. Toby is banged-up and is going to have to have a small surgery after spring ball, but he does not complain about it or cry about it. He goes out there and practices every day. He is the kind of guy you want on your team.”

Trent Matthews Returns to the Rams
Former safety and 2015 CSU graduate Trent Matthews will be returning to his alma mater as a graduate assistant this season. The former All-Mountain West honoree recorded 10 career interceptions in the Green and Gold and tied the CSU record for most career starts with 50. Matthews will attend practices for the remainder of spring, and will formally join the program upon being accepted into his graduate program at the university.

Larry Kerr visits practice
Former Colorado State defensive coordinator Larry Kerr was a guest at practice on Tuesday. Kerr was defensive coordinator for the Rams from 1993 to 2002, a time period that featured six conference titles and seven bowl game appearances. He re-joined the Rams’ coaching staff as assistant head coach from 2008-11.



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