NC Central football: 2021 season preview

College Sports

DURHAM, N.C. (WNCN) — A picture-perfect day in Durham greeted the North Carolina Central football team for the first day of football camp Saturday. The players hit the field looking to knock off the rust and turn coaches’ heads.

“It’s good to be out the first day of practice and it’s a blessing man it’s about 85 degrees,” said N.C. Central head football coach Trei Oliver. “I thought it was going to be a little warmer than this but it feels good. The guys have a whole lot of energy and I think the best thing about it is we see a lot of carryover from the workouts over the summer as well as spring ball.”

The practice was high energy, with speed the name of the game.

Coaches may have set the practice schedule but they weren’t the only ones pressing. Every player in each position group was pushing the man in front to do better.

“What we did was, each segment, we talked about the standard not only for the team but each segment came up with their standards,” said Oliver. “The receivers the DB’s and everything like that. So whenever we watch film, the things that they talked about is their standard and that is what I want to see on film and they really bought into it and guys are holding each other accountable.”

It’s a sure-fire way to get the most out of everyone as they look to improve on the 4-8 record the team posted in 2019. This year’s squad is going for a balanced attack.

“We’re going to do a little bit of everything. We’re going to score some points and we’re going to bring it on defense. We’re going to be a total team,” said Oliver. “We will be disciplined. We are going to be sound in the fundamentals and then also in the kicking game. We have to make plays but overall we’re going to be much improved. I think that the talent level is there we just have to get these guys coached up.”

If the practice feels likes it’s high energy you’re not seeing things. Chalk it up to the first day, players vying for starting jobs or the fact the players and coaches are appreciative to finally be back on the football field.

“They’re definitely appreciative, you know, it was rough and again they’re just so happy to be out here,” said Oliver. “The guys are bouncing around and have a smile on their face and when something is taken away from you that you love once you have a chance to get it back you know you’re definitely appreciative of it.”

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