We are just over half way through February and many staffs around the country are working on their practice schedules for spring football. Most schools begin in March and finish up sometime in April. Spring Football is generally 15 practices spread out over a four week period. Coaches use the month to install new systems, acclimate first year coaches and evaluate key personnel.
The players who usually make the biggest impact in the spring are guys who red-shirted last season or are early enrollees who just got on campus. Some spring football practice sessions are more physical than others because of the make-up of the team. Veteran teams with proven commodities usually spend the time evaluating young players. Young teams coming off struggling seasons generally step it up with several scrimmages during the month. The key to spring for coaches is establishing the tempo the want to practice with in the fall. This will be the last time the players and coaches will work together with pads on till August and it is a very important teaching time.
Some folks have tried to spearhead campaigns to do away with spring football citing safety as the number one reason. I couldnt disagree with this more and actually think spring football serves a lot of good. The only way I would ever do away with the spring is if you made fall camp exactly like the NFL with longer camps that every school could afford and played exhibition scrimmages locally. Now that would be fun, wouldnt it? The only problem with college football camps starting in July is the coaches would have to re-do an entire calendar, plus recruiting would have to change. Here is a typical college football coachs calendar
Feb-Signing DayJunior Days Week Off Spring FB Mtgs.
April-Spring Football Game Start Spring Recruiting
June-Junior Football Camps on Campus
July-Time off with Family Start Fall Practice Schedules
August-December- In Season Schedule
Les Miles will try to "rebuild" team chemistry with a strong returning unit.
Not a lot of time off right? Now you know why coaches are so quick to thank their wives for their success. The bottom line is spring football is the OTAs of college football and necessary at many schools. We have 26 new head coaches that will spend most of their spring practice installing new systems, evaluating personnel and basically telling guys where to go. Heck, spring football is fun for the fans too! It gives us something to bridge the camp till summer and all the pre season polls. Every coach has a different and varying opinion on how important their spring practice should be, but dont kid yourself everyone in SECACC Country loves the fact that college football practice will be in the headlines in March and April.
This and That..South Alabama in Mobile begins spring practice this week while national runner up LSU starts at the end of the month. ACC schools that begin this month are Duke and Boston College. We have almost finished the coaching carousel with the final few openings being closed in the SEC and ACC. Florida ousted offensive line coach Frank Verducci for Tim Davis from Utah. Davis worked with Will Muschamp in the NFL with the Miami Dolphins. He has also worked with several Gator assistants including Brian White from the offense. It was always thought that Verducci was a Charlie Weis hire and when he did not take him to Kansas many thought he was safe. However Muschamp waited until recruiting was over and they parted ways. The staff is now made up of seven Will Muschamp hires specifically and two holdovers in DJ Durkin and Brian White from Urban Meyers staff. Durkin and White are clearly Muschamp guys now and this staff should be solid for the next couple of years.
This is a big spring for Mike London and Virginia to take the next step.
Heres some Spring Football Game Dates:
Ole Miss 4212012
South Carolina -TBA
Texas A&M 4282012
Boston College -TBA
Florida State 4142012
Georgia Tech 4202012
N.C. State -TBA
North Carolina 4142012
Virginia Tech 4212012
OTHERS OF NOTE