Coach Joey Jones Show Recap 2009-03-04

March 4, 2009 · By · Filed Under Football, Joey Jones Radio Show 

In the studio today at Wing’s Sports Grill on the Beltine near I-65 just off of Airport Blvd is Head Coach Joey Jones, Lee Shirvanian and Travis Toth.

One of the first questions was how close is the schedule to being finalized? Coach Jones said that they are waiting on one last contract to come through and they should be ready to release the 2009 football schedule. Lee Shirvanian followed that question up with his next one, why does it take so long? When getting game contracts together, lawyers get involved so they have to read through the contract to make sure that it benefits their school. Another thing has been trying to find teams that have open dates that match up with ours.

Putting together the schedule is like trying to put a huge puzzle together, all the pieces have to analyzed and fit together to make an overall picture. But for the 2009 season they are looking at possibly 8 games.Which by all indications all seven or eight games will be home games. While it was not stated the most likely reason that schools would want to travel to Mobile is that its a larger stadium than most they will be playing their first season in Division-I football.

Also, spring practice will be starting on Monday at Ladd-Peebles Stadium and the coaching staff has changed their minds once again for the publics benefit. All practices, including the first week, will be open to the public. Practices will be held from 2:30-4:45pm on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Fridays with the occasional Wensday thrown in there as well. Coach Jones said there will be right at 100 players out there for practice with roughly 16* of them having scholarships. (* NOTE: This number may or may not be accurate.)

When asked what they will be doing at practice Coach Jones said that they have to evaluate all of the kids and give them a chance. In addition to evaluating them, they also have to teach fundamentals. The coaching staff are not going to be too fast in getting into scrimmages, they will be having scrimmages but they have to start with the fundamentals first.

Joe Gottfried visited the show and was talking about scheduling. Again Lee Shirvanian asked why is it so hard to put together a schedule? Gottfried’s response was that since we are an unclassified school it’s hard to find other unclassified schools or find schools who want to schedule you. Plus getting them to travel to Mobile is sometimes difficult. They are working on teams for 2012-2016 and spending a lot of time to work those schedules out so they will benefit our team the best we can. They do not want to schedule another big game the next week after playing Tennesse for instance.

Lee made light about how quick the USA program is going from nothing to Division-I football. Gottfried said that South Florida took 3-4 years to do what we are on track to do in 1 or 2 years. The staff and administration have gotten on board and without them it could not be possible to do it. Joe Gottfried also let it out that in 4-5 years from now we just might be on the schedule to play Notre Dame. Joe is close to some people up there and they have said we are still on the list of potential opponents for Notre Dame. What is really exciting about the possibility of USA playing Notre Dame is that they have a long standing contract with NBC to have their games nationally broadcast. So that would be you would be able to see USA taking on Notre Dame national television like NBC within the first could seasons of being in Division-I football.

Joe Gottfried also talked about how the topic comes up regularly about the possibility of building an on-campus football stadium. He said that that decision is definitely further down the road. But if that were to come true it would just all to all of the current construction on the USA Campus that is generating large amounts of excitment. If you go by the intramural fields and see the football field house being constructed along with the practice fields and all that goes along with that, you will be amazed and cannot help but to get excited about USA. Also the new student recreation center being built at the corner of Old Shell Road and Stadium Drive right beside of Stanky Field. It is such a great time to be a Jaguar.

One caller asked if we would be playing in the Sun Belt conference when we begin this fall. Coach Jones response was that in 2012 we will have our first full Sun Belt schedule. However, until that time we will be playing as an independent school.

Coach Jones, when asked if they are still looking for players, said that the coaching staff is still looking to bring in at least one more quarterback. Just like with their other quarterback recruits that will be coming in he will have to be of the runner/thrower model to fit in with their offense.

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