With all the changes on this year's Wolf Pack football team, there is one position that returns some key talent from last season: linebacker. Jonathan McNeal and Jordan Dobrich represent two of the Pack's top three tacklers from a year ago, and they have the Pack defense off to a strong start in fall camp.
"I think it's been going pretty well," said Dobrich. "We've been progressing well. We've been absorbing the coaching and I think it's been good for us as a team."
"It's been going pretty well," McNeal said. "We all made mistakes and we've just got to clean it up a little bit."
McNeal led the Pack with 103 tackles last season. Dobrich was third on the team with 80 tackles in 11 games. With both players now upperclassmen, they will be expected to lead a much-improved defense, both on and off the field.
"I feel like our chemistry has gotten stronger with the coaches and the team, and I feel like that's a great thing," said McNeal. "This year we're going to need it because we're going to be faced with tough games like we were last year."
"We've been bonding as a team, whether it's in the lunch hall or whether it's out on the field or in the locker room," said Dobrich. "Just being around each other that much, all day, all week, I think it's good for us."
Despite their strong individual performances last year, both McNeal and Dobrich were obviously disappointed with the team's 4-and-8 record. This season, they're hoping that individual success leads to in team success.
"We didn't show our true colors last season and we have a lot more to give," said Dobrich. "I think that shows a lot more than just on the field."
"I'm very excited," said McNeal. We get to throw away that 4-and-8 season and just go out there and do what we know how. As a team, I know that we're going to do great this year."