This and That
Each time more pads are added to the practice regime, there is an upward escalation of emotion that coincides and Monday morning at Memorial Stadium was no different. Even though the team was not in full pads, there was a variety of contact drills throughout the two-hour practice that livened things up a bit and brought a little extra energy to the squad.
The team has one more practice scheduled with half pads before going to full pads on Wednesday morning. Both of those sessions are scheduled for 8:30 a.m.
Head coach Bubba Schweigert has really engrained in this team the "Day By Day" philosophy that his coaches are trying to implement. He talks about it daily after every practice and has said in several media situations that he's not just trying to give the idea "lip service".
There were some highs and lows in the closing 10 minutes of 11-on-11 work, but the one thing Coach Schweigert is stressing early in on is giving maximum effort. And, so far he has been pleased with the work his team is putting forth.
"Our guys are working hard and if you make mistakes, but you're putting forth maximum effort, we can deal that," Schweigert said. "It's early in camp and the key for us now is to be a better football team tomorrow than we were today. When are our guys leave the practice field, it's onto the next thing on the day's schedule, meetings, lifting weights, whatever it might be. We want them to focus on the current task at hand and get better each day."
Special Teams Depth
Last season, senior placekicker Zeb Miller had no competition in fall camp or during the season. The starting placekicking job was his and rightfully so. The four-year starter wrapped up a standout career last season.
Freshman punter Mitch Meindel was the same way - he was the only true punter on the roster. In emergencies, linebacker Ben Peters or defensive back Maverick Edmunds would have been next in line.
The same goes for sophomore long snapper Brandon Larson, who gave up his linebacking responsibilities to concentrate soley on snapping for place kicks and punts.
This fall camp is different as each of those positions goes two-deep.
Freshmen Reid Taubenheim and Sam Fluegge are battling it out for the placekicking chores, while Meindel will be pushed by freshman Connor Boleduc. Larson also has a freshman pushing him in Minot native Jacob Holmen.
After spending the first two days of practice working on the two-minute drill, the run game became more of a focus on Monday. The running back corps is four-deep right now and as Coach Schweigert has suggested early on all positions are up for grabs.
SeniorsJer Garman and Adam Shaugabay will be pushed by redshirt freshman Patrick Sharp and sophomore transfer Cedric Simmons. Each member of that quartet has been getting equal reps early on as the team worked on the inside-run game today. All four running backs earned some type of praise from offensive coordinator Paul Rudolph as they get more acquainted with the new system.
The closing 10 minutes of practice were split with two-full units going opposite directions from the 40-yard line in. The reasoning is obvious as these coaches want to get players as many repetitions as possible with so many starting jobs on the line.
Media Day Roundup
Area media members converged both on the Memorial Stadium practice field and the Alerus Center today for the program's annual media luncheon.
Play-by-play Jack Michaels and co-host Tank McNamara dedicated their entire hour-long show on 740 The Fan to UND football, interviewing athletics director Brian Faison, quarterback Joe Mollberg, safety Baylee Carr, offensive coordinator Paul Rudolph and head coach Bubba Schweigert throughout the 60-minute broadcast.
Area television stations covering the luncheon were WDAZ (ABC), KVLY (NBC) and KVRR (Fox) were also in attendance and spoke to Schweigert, both coordinators and a mixutre of the 10 players that were on hand for the luncheon.
Those 10 players included:
TE Zach Adler
OL Brandon Anderson
QB Ryan Bartels
DB Baylee Carr
DL Alec Carrothers
LB Dayo Idowu
QB Joe Mollberg
LB Will Ratelle
RB Adam Shaugabay
DB Alex Tillman
The Grand Forks Herald had three sports reporters on hand to cover lots of different angles as fall camp continues on here in early August.
Midco Sports Network also had a trio of representatives at the event and were at Memorial Stadium later in the day to get some "green screen" shots for their weekly television show and game broadcasts.
All of the 90-plus players in fall camp also had head shots taken for both UNDSports.com and for their playing cards that will appear on the new HD video board at the Alerus Center.
Check out UNDFootball on Instagram or follow @UNDFootball on Twitter to see a few pictures from the practices.
-- UND --