#DayByDay Fall Camp Notebook: No. 7
This and That
Someone knock on wood, but the weather for the first week of fall camp has been magnificent and Friday was no different at Memorial Stadium.
"I think having this nice weather is helping us. It's been a little cooler when we get out here early and it's not been too hot. They are able to focus a little better," Schweigert said. "Now, we want them to be able to focus when it's hot too, but this nice weather has sure helped us out."
Normal Nicks and Bruises
The normal nicks and bruises are mounting early in camp and those have opened the door for some players that may not have been in line to get as many repititions to impress the coaching staff.
"There are some guys getting a lot more reps than we thought they would because we have few nicked up, but that is good for them to get those reps," Schweigert said.
The team will end a stretch of eight-consecutive days on the practice field Saturday with the first scrimmage of fall camp. Coach Schweigert said he would like to get around 70 "live" plays in during the session that will see the team be on the field by 8:45 a.m.
There will be officials on hand for the scrimmage to make it as realistic as possible. And, what exactly does Coach Schweigert want to see from his team on Saturday - that's simple.
"I would like to see us eliminate some of the mistakes - the things that we control. The quarterback-center exchange, elliminate penalties - the ones that are not forced. Unforced errors are the things that will hurt our football team more than anything. That is what we looking for along with basic fundamentals: who is going to get off blocks, who is going to tackle, who is going to secure the ball, so those basic fundamentals will all be things we are looking at tomorrow."
A Newcomer's Impression On The First Week
One player who has been turning some heads early in fall camp is freshman Brandon Walker. The wide receiver from Flint, Mich., has shown his athleticism in both catching the ball in traffic as well as elevating to make some nice catches high in the air.
Walker is pleased, but not satisfied with how his first week as a collegiate football has progressed.
"It's been going pretty good. I feel comfortable with all the plays and feel like I have those down. I've got a couple of nicks and bruises, but I'm just going out trying to compete for a spot (in the rotation). The position is wide open and I'm just giving my best to try and make everyone better.
"As for a progress report, I'd give myself a B+. There are some things I've messed up, so I just have to work hard to get those fixed."
Walked knew the transition from the high school ranks to the college ranks would not be an easy one, but so far he has not been surprised.
"It has been exactly like I expected. I knew the game was going to be a lot faster, so I've had to adjust to that and keep working," Walker added.
One thing the coaches have been stressing early in fall camp is that this program has no class structure and there is no pre-determined depth chart. That, Walker says, has taken a little of the pressure off.
"It's let me play free. I don't have to worry about who is in front of me or who is behind me. I just have to play my game and try to continually get better," he added.
Walker has also been impressed with the team camaraderie despite the addition of so many new players. "It's going good. These guys have been friendly. They are my brothers now, so we have to continue to build this thing together."
The coaches have also scaled back a little on the physical aspects of practice over the last two days and that has helped some too. During the end of both team drills today, the coaches walked through plays instead of having the players go at pin-the-hip tempo.
"We slowed the tempo down in a couple of the periods to really focus on the mental aspect," Schweigert added. "And, when we were in our high-tempo periods, I thought we were better today. We stayed on our feet. I thought we knew our assignments better. I thought guys communicated better, so that was a real positive today.
"But there are certain times where we want to back off some and really focus on the mental part of the game and we did that some today."
Check out UNDFootball on Instagram or follow @UNDFootball on Twitter to see a few pictures from the practices.
-- UND --