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Stressing fundamentals, Golden Eagles open Spring Drills Saturday

COOKEVILLE, Tenn. – The  Tennessee Tech football team is looking forward, opening spring drills Saturday afternoon on Overall Field in its first steps of preparation for the 2014 season. Coach Watson Brown's Golden Eagles will go through 15 practice sessions, culminating with the annual Purple vs. Gold Spring Game on Saturday, April 5.

Unlike past years, the team will get a break in the middle of the sessions. The schedule calls for the first four practice sessions before Spring Break empties the campus. The team will resume March 18 for the final 11 sessions.

All practices are open to the public and the Golden Eagles encourage any and all fans to come out and get an early glimpse at the 2014 squad. 

A complete list of the spring practice schedule is listed below.

The most important aspects of the month-long drills, according to Brown, will be teaching fundamentals and improving each player’s understanding of the system and skills, as well as finding the right position for each player and making sure they fit correctly into the system.

A third point of focus this spring, according to the veteran coach, is to make the team tougher.

"This team really needs a lot of 'grow up' to get where we need to be," Brown said.

“Our goals for the spring never change,” Brown said. “We want to make sure we have the right guys in the right positions, and we want to teach and develop their fundamentals.

“We don’t have to worry about game plans in the spring, so we can spend so much more time working with each player,” he said “We work to get each kid better, and his knowledge of the game better.”

The spring roster will feature two new names, with the addition of offensive junior Blake Luevano and freshman Johnathan Coleman. Luevano is a 6-foot-6, 300-pound offensive lineman from Citrus (Calif.) College, while Coleman is a 6-foot-2, 210-pound inside linebacker from Delray Beach, Fla. Both were included in the team's February signing class and are already enrolled at Tech and attending classes.

There will also be 13 players in action who sat out the 2013 season as redshirts, all looking to make an impression and solidify a spot on the preseason depth chart heading into fall camp.

The Golden Eagles will go through 15 spring practice sessions, weather permitting, with the team getting into Tucker Stadium Tuesday, Thursday and Friday afternoons at 3 p.m. and Saturdays at 1:30 p.m.

NCAA Division I football programs are permitted to conduct 15 practices during the off-season. The 15 practices must be held during a period of 34-continuous calendar days. The first three practices of the spring are non-contact with players wearing helmets and shorts.

Tech’s Spring Practice Schedule:
Saturday, March 1 practice #1 - 1:30 p.m.
Tuesday, March 4 practice #2 - 3 p.m.
Thursday, March 6 practice #3 - 3 p.m.
Friday, March 7 practice #4 - 3 p.m.

        - Spring Break -

Tuesday, March 18 practice #5 - 3 p.m.
Thursday, March 20 practice #6 - 3 p.m.
Friday, March 21 practice #7 - 3 p.m.
Saturday, March 22 practice #8 - 1:30 p.m.
Tuesday, March 25 practice #9 - 3 p.m.
Thursday,March 27 practice #10 - 3 p.m.
Friday, March 28 practice #11 - 3 p.m.
Saturday, March 29 practice #12 - 1:30 p.m.
Tuesday, April 1 practice #13 - 3 p.m.
Thursday, April 3 practice #14 - 3 p.m.
Saturday, April 5 practice #15 / Purple vs. Gold Spring Game - 1:30 p.m.