Apparently Mother Nature got the memo that it's football season, as the summer heat has quickly turned into fall-like weather. But there was no way a little bit of rain was going to dampen the Wolf Pack's spirits on the first day of practice.
"The energy in the building today has been very, very positive," said head coach Brian Polian. "I get the sense that everybody would have preferred to practice in the morning than in the afternoon... The overall feeling right now around everybody is really, really positive and really energetic."
After last year's disappointing 4-8 record, Polian stressed the need to turn the page and focus on the upcoming season.
"There's no rear view mirror. We're just simply moving forward. This is a new year. It's a new team. We're going to have new guys stepping up and making plays. I think dwelling on last year at length is really a waste of time at this point. We need to get focused on what's in front of us."
What's in front of them is three weeks of training camp that will feature position battles at linebacker, safety, tight end, and maybe the most interesting one at wide receiver.
"I want to see who the third receiver is going to be," said Polian. "Obviously Richie Turner and Hasaan (Henderson) are guys who both started games. Is it going to be Jerico Richardson? Is it going to be Brayden Sanchez? What's the two-deep (depth chart) going to look like at wide receiver when training camp is about two-thirds done?... There will be some battles here that I'm excited to see. I'm excited to get going with it."
Polian also announced the creation of a new award, the Alpha Wolf, which will be given to the top walk-on each week. The winner will be awarded the number 1 jersey, worn last year by Brandon Wimberly.