Aug. 8, 2006
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. -- UAB head coach Watson Brown and the 2006 Blazers finished up their final practice before strapping on the full pads for the first time, working in helmets and shorts for over an hour on Tuesday afternoon.
"I think we got something out of it," said Brown. "We got some pass work in and now we are going to have two very physical days in a row starting real early in the morning."
The team worked through position drills for over half the workout, and then finished it off with team drills which saw the units on both sides of the ball get some game action. The Blazers continue to brave the heat, as they get ready for their first full pads practice on Wednesday morning.
"You have to get pad ready, and you can't do that without hitting one another," commented Brown. "There is a toughness you develop and a conditioning that you develop. Shorts is one thing, but when the pads come on everything is just a little quicker," Brown added. "There's only one way to do it, so you cross your fingers and go after it."
The coaching staff praised the work of the secondary on Tuesday, as they look to solidify the defense this season. "They are looking great right now and they have gone through an experience process. I'm hoping that's a place you see us a whole lot better," said Brown. "There is talent there and they are good players. They have experience and we should be better there."
As the Blazers continue into the tail end of their first week of practice, Brown is encouraged by what he has seen so far. With a veteran group returning, UAB's head coach expects things to continue to progress as time passes during fall camp. "The first week is hard. You start to see progression in the second week," said Brown. "We put everything in at once. Nothing looks very good to start, but by the second week and the second scrimmage you start to see some timing and things start to come together."
UAB will continue its preseason preparation on Wednesday, practicing in full pads for the first time this fall.
UAB opens the 2006 campaign in Norman, Okla. against the Oklahoma Sooners, a team picked by most observers to be in the preseason top five nationally. The contest will kick off at 6:00 p.m. and be televised nationally by TBS.
NOTE: UAB practices will be closed to the public this season, a change in previous years' policies. They will remain open to media.