FAU running back Martese Jackson gets a carry in practice on Thursday. (Owl Access Photo)
Picking up the pace
FAU players showed up in better shape to handle the tempo of practice and it's already paying off.
Originally published on
BOCA RATON - FAU players were warned after spring practice that they had better be conditioned to practice at a fast tempo in training camp.
After just two days of practice, Owls coach Carl Pelini can tell the Owls got the message loud and clear by showing up in August in better shape.
“Our strength team did a great job this summer and most of the players were here this summer so we were able to get in here in better shape,” Pelini said. “The tempo that we practice is faster than probably any here I have ever been. We are running snaps every 12 seconds or so. There will be a curve in terms of physical conditioning but they will get better and that will prepare us for the season.”
Players were clearly motivated and were enthusiastic to get in shape during off-season workouts, said FAU strength and conditioning coach Chuck Lobe.
“The guys that were here all summer did a great job,” Lobe said. “They really busted their butts and wanted to make those improvements. They did an excellent job.”
Players are already seeing the benefits of being in shape during the hectic pace of practices.
“Coach Lobe got us in shape, which we needed,” said FAU defensive back Demetrius Williamson. “I can feel it. I can run across the field without feeling tired. It's paying off.”
Gaskins makes switch: Freshman Jeremy Gaskins who was a star running back at Delray Beach-American Heritage is switching sides of the ball.
Gaskins, the first player to commit to Pelini, will be a defensive back this season.
Gaskins also played defensive back at American Heritage and was a backup running back to Greg Bryant.
“It's part of a deal where we are floating guys to see where they are they going to be and where they fit in the puzzle ,” FAU defensive backs coach Ross Watson said. “That helps by recruiting guys that have played on both sides of the ball. We want athletic guys.”
Stryeffler sidelined: Defensive lineman Andrew Stryffeler was taken off the field while his back was being iced down and had to have the assistance of a wheelchair to leave the Oxley Center.
Stryffeler has had trouble with injuries throughout his career at FAU.
Hard Knocks at the Ox: Thursday at training camp
Making Plays: RB Travis Jones is making an early case for carries. He ripped off a few nice runs on Thursday and is showing some elusiveness as he gets loose into the secondary.
Stepping Up: Martin Wright was already getting plenty of reps at defensive end and could get even more if Stryffler is banged up.
Newcomer Watch: JUCO transfer RB Martese Jackson may not be too far behind Jones. Jackson had a few long runs as well on Thursday.
Instant Message: "We were defintely crisper today. We still ran out of gas there at the end but with the tempo we are running, that's undestandable."
- Carl Pelini