By Jacob Staires
Chapter two of the Jake Spavital era began Tuesday morning with the beginning of spring football practices. The atmosphere and look of the roster are already starting to take shape for the future of this Bobcat program.
“It feels good to be back out there,” Spavital said. “New team, new identity… it has been good to change the culture and get these kids behind what we’re trying to accomplish.”
There is no shortage of new faces in the locker room as the ‘Cats try to develop some comradery going forward. In total, 11 junior college and graduate transfers took the field on Tuesday. Offensive lineman Silas Robinson, running back Brock Sturges, receiver Drue Jackson, safety Tory Spears and linebacker Maureese Wren were some of the notable transfers to get some action on the first day of spring practice.
“If you look at it from a team perspective, I thought we increased in length and I think we have a lot more athleticism,” Spavital said. “It’s still a work in progress and we’ll have more of these questions answered over these next 14 practices.”
After a year of stagnant offensive play, Spavital looks to find some consistency by wiping the slate clean when it comes to the depth chart. The quarterback position will be up for grabs once again this season as Tyler Vitt, who started nine games last season, takes on Brady McBride, the Memphis transfer who has been chomping at the bit to be eligible to play.
“From an offensive perspective, we weren’t always on the attack,” Spavital said. “We need to be at the point where we dictate the pace of play and we’re out there extending drives.”
During the 2019 season, the defense was the one bright spot for the Bobcats. Stuck on the field for much of the year, there is an urge to balance the time of possession in 2020.
“If you look at where we were last year, the defense played well but we kept them on the field for the majority of the game,” Spavital said. “That’s what I’m saying the change of identity is; we’ve got to change who we are on offense for us to change the identity of this team.”
With Texas State deciding to move on from Bob Stitt as offensive coordinator after finishing their 3-9, 2019 campaign, Spavital will be calling plays for the first time during his short tenure in San Marcos.
With Spavital adding to his list of duties, he is grateful for the new hires that could potentially make his job easier.
The Bobcats will practice three times a week until they hold their annual spring game on Saturday, April 11th.
Featured image by Nathan Rarangol.