March 26, 2014
CONWAY - After inclement weather cancelled practice on Tuesday, Coastal Carolina University football held its fifth of 15 spring practices on Wednesday evening.
The team will practice three more times this week, including a controlled scrimmage on Saturday and conclude spring drills April 12 with annual Spring Game at 1:30 pm.
Wednesday's session, which featured helmets and should pads only, was primarily focused on individual position work and players getting as many reps as possible. To achieve the latter, the Chanticleer coaches split each position/group into `ones' and `twos' to allow the less experienced team members more reps and time to work on fundamentals, while the returning veterans focused more on timing and the instillation of the playbook.
After starting practice with special teams, the players broke off with their position coaches to review fundamentals and techniques. Following individuals, the offensive and defensive skill players went through 7-on-7 exercises, while the linemen worked on blocking and rushing the passer. The practice culminated with a brief team segment.
Offensive coordinator Dave Patenaude on the progress of the offense:
"I think we got a long way to go. We are breaking in a lot of young guys and I'm not sure they know how to do everything right now. The message across the board is that we are down six starters from last year's team and those six positions are open to be earned.
"We are young and have to learn how to work and how to execute. I think our quarterback, Alex Ross, is a very good player and has been through the process, so the young guys are looking to him for guidance. The young guys we have are good players, but I'm not sure they know how to work yet or have the maturity level to do the things we have done over the past two seasons. We have a long way to go, but I think by the time spring practice is over we will make strides towards where we want to be as we head into the summer and fall camp after that."
Defensive coordinator Clayton Carlin on the progress of the defense:
"I'm pleased so far. We don't have a lot of instillation of the playbook in right now. We are keeping things fairly simple and focusing on fundamentals and technique. But overall, through five practices I am pleased, but we still have a ways to go to get where we want to be. The great thing about this time of year is that we have a ton of guys getting numerous reps. I have always felt the more guys we can play the better, and our new practice format is allowing us to see more guys perform in practice."