Positive, Productive First Full Pad Practice For Aggie Football
Aug. 12, 2011
LOGAN, Utah -
Aggie Fact of the Day:
Aggie Tidbit of the Day:
Friday concluded the NCAA's five-day "acclimatization period" and with it meant that Utah State football could don full pads for the first time of the fall as the Aggies shifted practice to the turf of Merlin Olsen Field at Romney Stadium, and USU head coach Gary Andersen liked what he saw in his squad.
"It was a positive, productive practice. There were a lot of positives on both sides of the ball," Andersen said. "The quarterbacks hit some long passes down the field, which was encouraging to see. That means two things: one, we're throwing the ball better and two, we're pass protecting better, so those are both positive things to see."
The Aggie quarterbacks completed long passes to several different wide receivers, junior Matt Austin, senior Eric Moats, sophomore Rashard Stewart and multiple ones to sophomore Travis Van Leeuwen. Both Moats and Van Leeuwen snared passes that wend for TD's. In addition to singling out the passing, Andersen also singled out the pass coverage, noting that senior safeties Walter McClenton and Chris Harris, along with sophomore cornerback Nevin Lawson all had solid days.
While Andersen had positives in the practice, he also noted on some negatives.
"One of the negative things to me was our ability to handle the real grinding practice. It was a long, physical practice. We didn't handle it horrible, but we didn't handle it great either, especially with the consistency that we're hoping for. The other negative from today was the punting, not the snaps, not the other guys, just the punter. Overall, it was a very positive practice, but we've still got work to do," Andersen said.
Now that the Aggies have concluded the NCAA's five-day "acclimatization period" on Friday, USU's first two-a-day is slated for Saturday, Aug. 7, taking the practice fields from 9:15-11:15 a.m. and then again from 4:55 - 6:25 p.m.
Friday was the fifth of Utah State's 29 preseason practices before the season opener against No. 19 Auburn on Saturday, Sept. 3 at 10 a.m. (MT).
Saturday's practices are at the practice field. All practices of the preseason are open to the public. Fans are encouraged to stay in the stands when the team is practicing on Merlin Olsen Field at Romney Stadium and in the bleachers at the practice field. All open practices are subject to change.
USU's preseason concludes with a scrimmage on Saturday, Aug. 27 at Noon as part of Utah State Aggie Football Family Fun Day, sponsored by Macey's Foods. The event provides fans a chance to meet USU football players and coaches, participate in games and activities as well as purchase and pick-up season tickets. Activities sponsored by Macey's Foods will begin on the South Concourse of Romney Stadium.
Season tickets as well as two-game packages will be also available for purchase at the USU Football Family Fun Day on Saturday, Aug. 27 at the Romney Stadium Box Office, which is located on the South end of Romney Stadium.
After its season-opener at Auburn on Saturday, Sept. 3, Utah State's home opener is on Saturday, Sept. 10 at 6 p.m. (MT), taking on in-state foe Weber State, marking the first time that USU and WSU have squared off since 2001, and Utah State leads the all-time series, 11-1. The Aggie-Wildcat match-up will have special meaning for Andersen, who will be facing his mentor, Weber State head coach Ron McBride. Andersen played for McBride at Utah in 1985-86.
For USU football ticket information, contact the USU Ticket Office at the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum, or by phone by calling 1-888-USTATE-1 or (435) 797-0305.
Fans can follow the Aggie football program at twitter.com/USUFootball. Aggie fans can also follow the Utah State athletic program at twitter.com/USUAthletics or on facebook at Utah State University Athletics.
USU Football Practice Dates, Times and Locations Sat., Aug. 13 - 9:15 - 11:15 a.m. / 4:55 - 6:25 p.m. - Practice Field ** First two-a-day Mon., Aug. 15 - 9:15 - 11:15 a.m. / 4:55 - 6:25 p.m. - Practice Field Tues., Aug. 16 - 9:15 - 11:15 a.m. - Merlin Olsen Field at Romney Stadium * Scrimmage Wed., Aug. 17 - 9:15 - 11:15 a.m. / 4:55 - 6:25 p.m. - Practice Field Thurs., Aug. 18 - 9:15 - 11:15 a.m. - Practice Field Fri., Aug. 19 - 9:15 - 11:15 a.m. / 4:55 - 6:25 p.m. - Practice Field Sat., Aug. 20 - 9:30 - 11:30 a.m. - Merlin Olsen Field at Romney Stadium * Scrimmage Mon., Aug. 22 - 9:15 - 11:15 a.m. / 4:55 - 6:25 p.m. - Practice Field Tues., Aug. 23 - 9:15 - 11:15 a.m. - Practice Field Wed., Aug. 24 - 9:15 - 11:15 a.m. / 4:55 - 6:25 p.m. - Practice Field Thurs., Aug. 25 - 1 p.m. - Merlin Olsen Field at Romney Stadium * Scrimmage Fri., Aug. 26 - 9:15 - 11:15 a.m. - Practice Field Sat., Aug. 27 - Noon ** Scrimmage - part of Aggie Football Family Fun Day - Merlin Olsen Field at Romney Stadium ** End of camp