BISMARCK, N.D. - Universities have pretty much finished up their spring football schedule. The University of Mary concluded theirs last week, and while there wasn’t a spring game to follow, coaches and players can say they are very pleased with the progress they’ve seen on the field in preparation for their first game of the season against Minnesota State.
"The thing I like about spring ball is that you don't have the looming, you know, we don't have a game coming down in two days where there's a black or while line that's got to be, just, coaches, one of the most intrinsically rewarding things is just seeing your own players improve.” Head Coach Josh Kotelnicki adds, “so, I'm very happy with the improvements we've made. We still got a lot of work to do, we're not ready to play a game today, but neither is Alabama, neither is Florida State, neither is, Mankato State, who's our first opponent, so we all have a lot of work to do."
The Marauders are taking what they learned after last year, and applying it to their off-season this year before that first game in August. Senior Defensive Back Brady Zittleman says, "we had a bunch of guys who were very young see a lot of minutes last year, so that kind of came out. We kind of, I wouldn't say we played bad, we just played inconsistent. So, I think now that everyone that has had those minutes knows what it takes that, you can't take a play off here, because a play off here in the NSIC is a touchdown, so it comes down to just knowing that every play matters, all the little things matter from keys to alignment to assignment."
On the other side of the ball, U-Mary’s new Offensive Coordinator Bob Jones says just about everything he wanted to accomplish during the spring season, was done.
"I would say the big things. You have kind of you're smaller plays and schemes that you hope to go into every week with, but certainly you have things that you're going to call every single weekend. We're a triple option team, so you know that we're going to run the triple option every game no matter who the opponent is and what the defensive front is, and so it's most important to start there and everything starts and ends with that. I would say that we've definitely made progress, on that plane and kind of our foundation of what we know is going to be our building block for the whole season, I think that, definitely we're made the progress in those kinds of areas this spring and I've been very happy with the progress of it."
Spring football is done for the Marauders as they will start their regular season August 31st against Minnesota State at home.
As for the North Dakota State Bison, they wrapped up their spring football practices last week, but will have their Green and Gold spring game this Saturday the 22nd at the Fargodome. Kick-off is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. CT, and the game will be televised on the KFYR-KVLY Bison Network starting at 12:30 p.m. CT.