Just 51 days after completing their second consecutive 10-win season with a 31-28 win over Toledo in the Camellia Bowl, Appalachian State returns to the practice field on Monday to open spring practice. The Mountaineers will practice at 5:30 p.m.on Monday evening.
App practices four times in the first week of the spring, opening Monday afternoon, and continuing Wednesday, Friday, and Saturdaymorning. The early start to spring comes as the App coaching staff tries to keep the habits and rhythm from a 10-3 season fresh in the minds of the players.
“We like to piggyback off the fall,” Mountaineers’ fifth-year head coach Scott Satterfield said. “You remember a lot and can pick up where you left off with a shorter break. We’ll focus on fundamentals; blocking, tackling, angles, and leverage. We’re fortunate to have kept our staff together, so you don’t have a learning curve and can get to work pretty quickly.”
App returns a number of key pieces from their 10-win season including the 2016 Sun Belt Offensive Player of the Year Jalin Moore and Freshman All-American Clifton Duck. The Mountaineers return seven All-Sun Belt performers total, but the spring is more about the developing depth and evaluating young players ready to move onto the two-deep.
“The guys that have been here and played, we know what they can do,” Satterfield said. “The veterans are going to get their work and have some action in 11-on-11, but spring is really about the young guys. They’re going to get the majority of the reps and scrimmage action. This is their time to prove they can contribute.”
An early start to spring ball means more time to focus on conditioning and building in the weight room.
“The time after spring practice pays dividends in the fall,” Satterfield added. “We get four full months with Coach Mike (Sirignano) in the weight room to build for the season. Sometimes you lose a little during five weeks of spring ball.”
Spring practice is scheduled to wrap up on Saturday, March 4. App will not hold a spring game.