Even though it’s the “off-season,” there is a light at the end of the tunnel now that we are on the other side of Media Days. Fall camp is right around the corner. Actually, for Hawaii, their fall camp begins today and a few other teams begin on Friday. Through it all, we have you covered. Take a look at today’s links, plus the content coming your way on our site.
It’s no secret that Colorado State struggled last season and one of the main ways they set out on fixing that was by improving their depth by open competition this offseason. In case anyone forgot, they were under 85 scholarships for much of last season, getting to as low as 60 as players left the team intending to transfer. Coach Norvell liked his team, but felt the starters weren’t pushed enough, and a lack of competition keeps players from growing as much as they possibly can. For the latter half of the year, the Rams were really unable to practice properly without sufficient numbers. With an influx of transfers and high school recruits at every position, expect the competition to be fierce in fall camp.
Get ready for a lot of these articles as some teams start camp this Friday as they get ready for their Week 0 games. The biggest thing will be improvement from the offensive line and who will emerge for the two open spots. Other important questions will be who will step up at wide receiver, where true freshman Baylin Brooks is already creating some buzz, and who will fill which roles at running back, which is expected to be more by committee again this year. The Aztecs also have to replace all three starters on the defensive line, but the back eight of the defense is mostly in order.
Barry Odom is a defensive guy, finding success at the highest level in the SEC. So how does he bring that success to UNLV, a program that has allowed 30 ppg or higher in 14 of the past 15 seasons? First, it’s shutting down the run with effective play in the interior of the defensive line. Then it’s about limiting explosive plays by not making simple mistakes and making offenses earn it. However, at the end of the day, Coach Odom is putting the responsibility on himself and his coaching staff by saying it starts with effective gameplanning and figuring out how to scheme to their talent. It will be interesting to see how much progress they can make this season.
Utah State has defied low expectations before. Two years ago, in fact. Now, after being picked to finish eight in the conference, the Aggies are ready to prove people wrong. They only return nine starters and have replaced both coordinators, but they brought in a high number of transfers and are motivated to have their season look more like 2021 than 2022. The article does a nice job highlighting some players on both sides of the ball who could end up as difference-makers for Utah State.
MW Volleyball Global Champs.
BIG congrats to our #MWVB All Stars who went to Croatia and brought back some hardware— Mountain West (@MountainWest) July 24, 2023
UNLV's Chloe Thomas was named the MVP and Colorado State's Emery Herman earned a spot on the All-Tournament Team
: Global Challenge#MakingHerMark pic.twitter.com/rY6ff5Zn4v
On the horizon:
- Later today: Peak Perspective: Media Days Follow Up
- Coming Thursday: Our Mountain West Armchair Commissioner Series continues.
- Coming Friday: The MWCConnection Roundtable: Who is the best player on your team in 2023?
- Coming Friday: Friday Night Lights Review: S3E12