Jags Close Practice As They Continue To Prepare For Troy

September 26, 2012 · By · Filed Under Football 

South Alabama practiced for about two hours on Tuesday as they continue to prepare for their first-ever Sun Belt Conference game. A game against a rival school that is nearby and has experienced success in football over the last several years.

Since this is such a historic game for the Jags and Coach Jones wants the players as focused for the game as possible without any of their preparation leaking out to opponents, Coach Jones has done something he has never done before. He has closed practices to fans and the media this week.

“With the social media nowadays, there’s too many people that talk, so we’re just going to close practice this week,” he said.

However he did comment about practice to the Press-Register. “It was good today,” Jones said. “Our kids realize that Troy’s a great football program. They know how to win, they’ve been in a lot of big games and they’re kind of the standard for what we’re trying to get to. So our kids have prepared well. They understand it’s going to be a big game, but the bottom line is we’ve got a lot of big games this year. We’ve just got to keep preparing. I’m just proud of the way they’re coming to work. They need to keep doing that and continue to work hard this week to get better. The game’s designation as the Jags’ first game against a Sun Belt team only serves to increase the attention the game will receive from fans and others.”

Troy will be the measuring stick that the Jaguars will be measured against and Coach Jones understands this. “Sure. This is the standard by which our football program is going to be measured in the future,” Jones said. “Obviously, Troy’s at the top of the league. That’s the measuring stick for our football program because they’ve been so dominant. We’ll find out this Saturday where we measure up.”

But unlike Mississippi State last week, the Jags will be measured on the scoreboard more than the statistical sheet. The Jaguar offense has struggled moving the ball and scoring this season. The Jags scored 31 points in their season opening game agaisnt Texas-San Antonio, but have scored a total of 26 points in the last three games. This has the Jaguars averaging just 14.25 points per game this season.

“We’ll see Saturday, but obviously the biggest goal offensively is we’ve got to score points,” he said. “We’ve moved the ball and we haven’t gotten it in the end zone and that’s something that we’ve got to do. We’ve got to score some points in order to be able to compete with Troy. They’re going to score some points. They’re just very good on offense. They’re one of the best offenses I’ve seen in the Sun Belt on film. They’re very good so we’ve got to score some points offensively.”

South Alabama and Troy kickoff at 2:30pm on Saturday at Ladd-Peebles Stadium, the Jaguars first home game after a two week road swing against NC State and Mississippi State.

The Jags will attempt to break the single-game record attendance in the Sun Belt. Ladd-Peebles Stadium is the largest in the conference and the single-game record is around 32,000. But if you cannot make it out for the first-ever Sun Belt game, it will air on CSS (Comcast Sports Southeast) on Saturday.

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