Cullowhee, N.C. – Western Carolina returned to the practice field on Tuesday afternoon for the seventh of 15 workouts in the 2019 Spring Drills, presented by Wells Fargo. The Catamounts worked out in full pads for right at two hours on a brisk and breezy afternoon, taking the opportunity to mix individual position, unit, and team periods.
WCU had three periods of live action including the “Catamount Drill” live, competitive hitting session early in Tuesday’s practice. The offense and defense also squared-off in a couple head-to-head periods, while also taking advantage of the spring practice to mix in special teams work on field goal, punt, and kickoffs scattered into the 13-period workout.
“I think that our effort and our energy levels have been really good this spring, and we’ve had some really good leadership to this point,” said WCU head coach Mark Speir following Tuesday’s seventh practice, roughly the mid-point of spring drills. “There’s a bunch of guys out here holding each other accountable that’s been player-led, and that’s allowed our coaches to go out and coach technique, coach fundamentals.”
Speir added, “Our defense has really strained to the football – that’s a word we’ve been using all spring, and they’ve done that and have tackled well. The offense started out a little slow, we lost a lot of good, experienced offensive linemen. But each day, I think we’ve gotten better – and today, I think was our best day running the football.”
Western Carolina returns to the practice field three more times this week, working out in shells on Thursday before wearing helmets and spider pads – foam pads that simulate shoulder pads – for Friday afternoon’s workout. On Saturday, the team will practice in full pads at 1 pm in a spring showcase in lieu of a traditional spring game. Gates will be open, concessions by Aramark and souvenirs from the WCU Bookstore will be on hand, as well as Athletics ticket and Catamount Club representatives if fans want to join the Club or purchase 2019 football season tickets.
“I think that we’re right on par with where we need to be at this point in our spring. At certain spots, we’ve got some youth, and that’s where we’re putting our focus right now and there are a lot of young players getting a lot of reps this spring,” Speir said.
Unless otherwise noted, each WCU spring football practice is open to the public. It is respectfully requested, though, that spectators observe from the stadium seating area and avoid being either on the field or the sidelines.
Fans can keep track of everything related to Catamount football and WCU Athletics through its social media outlets on Facebook (fb.com/catamountsports) and Twitter (@catamounts, @WCU_FB).
2019 Catamount Football Spring Practice
Presented by Wells Fargo
Practice #8 – Thursday, April 4 – Shells – 4:15 pm
Practice #9 – Friday, April 5 – Helmets & spider pads – 4:15 pm
Practice #10 – Saturday, April 6 – Full pads – 1 pm (concessions, souvenirs available)
Practice #11 – Tuesday, April 9 – Full pads – 4:15 pm
Practice #12 – Thursday, April 11 – Shells – 4:15 pm
Practice #13 – Friday, April 12 – Helmets & spider pads – 4:15 pm
Practice #14 – Saturday, April 13 – Full pads (scrimmage) – 10:30 am
Practice #15 – Tuesday, April 16 – Shells – 4:15 pm
(schedule subject to time/date changes)