While the spring sports season slowly comes to a close, the John Carroll University football team is busy preparing for fall. This time of the year is critical for college football teams, as coaches use spring practice to begin implementation of the playbook, evaluation of talent at every position and get a feel for the team as a whole. The first spring under head coach Tom Arth has been no exception, as the season has added importance given the tough 2013 schedule.
Any time a new regime takes over, growing pains are bound to occur. Spring practice is a great way to alleviate some of those problems. Arth has used the time to do just that, and start determining who will earn the starting positions left open due to players’ graduations. The offense in particular has several positions to fill. Notable players who will not be back due to graduation are wide receiver Lane Robilotto and running back Sean Kuenzig.
In addition, the Blue Streaks’ schedule for next season is not an easy one. The Blue and Gold travel to Chicago for a matchup with a tough St. Norbert College team on Sept. 7. Following that exciting contest, JCU has nine consecutive Ohio Athletic Conference games on the schedule, five of which are on the road.
Arth has done a fine job of preparing his players thus far, as the squad has looked solid in early practices. The defense was particularly stellar in an intrasquad scrimmage played under the lights at Don Shula Stadium on Monday, April 29.
“The defense is really coming together well and playing great as a defensive unit,” freshman safety Chad Aerni said.
Sophomore linebacker Kevin Cope, watching from the sidelines due to an injury, commented, “I think our chemistry from last year really carried over to this spring and everyone got after it.”
Following a solid season of spring ball, look for the Blue and Gold to make definite strides this season under Arth.