On Sunday, the team officially reported to campus for the Fall. Of course, most of them had been on campus all summer working out, attending summer school, and doing drills. But yesterday it was official.
Les Miles had this to say:
“I think that defensive line should plan on being dominant. They should plan on playing better than they played (last season).”
“That offensive line should be and look to be the more physical line in our conference, maybe in our country,” he said. “If they’re seeing it as, ‘I’m going to go play like I played last year,’ that’s not good enough.
I like the sentiment, but I think that if Les really wants the lines to be better, and in particular more physical, he will need to make sure there is more of a rotation at those positions. We would need to take advantage of our depth and make sure our players don't get tired out.
Today begins official Fall Practice, complete with coaches and everything. There are rules:
- Each player may only compete in a certain number of practices. For this reason, practice is, at first, split squad. The veterans practice in the morning and the incoming freshmen and a few select veterans practice in the evening. This is so that the coaches can tailor practices to the needs of each individual group. The first full-squad practice is, I think, Friday.
- Each player must practice a certain number of times (I think it's twice, but I could be wrong) in less than full gear before he may practice in full gear. Therefore, if a player is hurt at the beginning of Fall Practice, he must practice without pads while everyone else is in pads for a while, which means he'd be even further behind.
- Some teams do two-a-days, but I think that's foolish. You only get a certain number of practices and you can space them out as much as you'd like. Why would you burn two of them in one day? It can't be as efficient as doing one per day.
- When it's over, there's FOOTBALL!