Skip to main content

Practice Update: Lehigh Straps on the Pads

Lehigh just released an interesting report on their official website regarding Lehigh's progress during preseason practice, and I can say this: it didn't look like that when I showed up at practice the other day.

After getting permission to see practice from the athletics department this past Sunday I was in the area for Eagles practice and stopped to also see the Brown & White later that afternoon. The practice was already pulled into Rausch field house at that time since it had hailed just about an hour earlier in the Valley.

I took great pains to stay out of the way, and see exactly what was up. Since it was a split squad match (and I only saw the one of them), no real conclusions can be drawn. I did see sophomore RB Jaren Walker sporting his new #8 jersey as Lehigh go through some physical drills in "shells" (to the uninitiated, in helmets and about half the number of pads as normal).

The only real "news' I can offer from the practice was the presence of a walk-on in the QB derby. Yes, you read right. I spied a #16 in practice taking reps at QB who I later learned was a walk-on, freshman QB Thad Kosciolek. That makes the grand total of QBs in practice at five.

Coach Coen told me after the practice that the weather didn't "cooperate", but he was pleased with the work they were able to get done inside on Sunday and Monday (where once again the weather was bad).

Building on this, coach Coen reported this week that he's still looking at the team's overall conditioning, and he's looking forward to the heat to see how they troops' condition really is.

“I thought we ran the ball well today,” Coen said. “The defense rallied late and that’s usually the way the early part of camp goes, with some give and take on both sides.” He continued, “Our pass skeleton drill was up and down with some dropped balls but kids were making plays too.”

Coen said it has been tough to get a clear read on the team’s overall conditioning in the early going due to the favorable weather. “With such good weather, it’s tough to tell where we’re at. I’m hoping the temperatures pick up soon here. The double sessions will also give us a good read on what type of shape we’re in.” Coen added, “I think it’s clear that there is a noticeable difference in the strength in a lot of our kids. Many of these guys put in long hours of work in the offseason and it has shown.”

Although the team has had just five practices, Coen said it’s easy to see that the newest group of Mountain Hawks is not shying away from competition. “I’m very pleased with our freshmen. It’s a group of competitors. They’re still learning the system and thinking too much, but the effort they’re giving and how eager they are to get better has been very impressive.”


This is all music to my ears - the freshmen are entering the meat grinder pretty well early on, and the overall strength is up on the team. I see it in this way: coach Coen has set a bunch of goals for this team (like building strength), and the team is meeting the goals. Now, let's just keep those injuries away...

Comments

Anonymous said…
Kosciolek was Lehighton's QB the past two years. Played in the LV All-Star game last month in relief of Jon Mangual, the Pocono Mtn West QB that was killed in a car crash yesterday. Kosciolek was a decent running QB and not much of a passer.

Popular posts from this blog

Nick Shafnisky Is Pushing Hard to Get To Play at the Next Level in Football

"Don't take anything for granted, just keep pushing."
Those are the words of QB Nick Shafnisky, told to The Whitehall-Coplay Press all the way back in 2013, about his preparation as a high school athlete.
And they seem to summarize the Whitehall, PA native perfectly, then as now.
Dubbed the "Male Athlete of the Year" by that publication, the article goes on about Shaf's many exploits at Whitehall high school - leading the Zephyr football team to a co-Lehigh Valley Conference title, becoming the first player ever in that conference to rush and pass for over 1,000 yards, and earning the league's co-MVP award as well.
He also was a member of the Zephyrs playoff basketball team, and for good measure also helped set a record for the 4x100 relay team as well.
At Whitehall, and at Lehigh, coaches pushed him, but it was his own hard work that helped make him the best athlete he could be.
This weekend, Shaf, like every eligible college football player, will be …

#TheRivalry Flashback: November 21st, 1987: Lehigh 17, Lafayette 10

Since becoming an undergrad at Lehigh back in the late 1980s, I first heard about the historic nature of the football team and "The Rivalry" through the stories that fellow students would share.

I did not attend the final meeting between Lehigh and Lafayette at Taylor Stadium, which was the final time a football game would be played there.

Those that did attend said that was that it was cold.

"I remember it being one of the coldest games ever," Mark Redmann recollected, "with strong Northwesterly winds and the temperature hovering around 20.  By the end of the game, the stands were half empty because most of the fans just couldn't take the cold.

"Fortunately, several of my fraternity brothers snuck in flasks to help fend off the chill."

Dominick Bragalone Goes Into Monster Mode As Lehigh Is One Win Away From Title

It has been a most unusual season for Lehigh.

Starting the year off at 0-5 and getting swept in their out-of-conference schedule, the Mountain Hawks were in danger of having their season go off the rails.

But two things have come together over the last five football games that have put Lehigh on the brink of back-to-back championships.

The first is the late blooming of the Lehigh defense, which kept battling every week since the low point of the September 30th loss to Wagner to do the job in four of their five Patriot League conference games. 

The second is the development of junior RB Dominick Bragalone into a bellcow running back, a back who has to be in the conversation for Patriot League offensive player of the year.

In five Patriot League games, Bragalone has run for 863 yards in 5 games, rushing for 11 touchdowns and adding two more receiving touchdowns as well. 

The South Williamsport, PA native certainly wasn't unknown before this week - after all, as a freshman and a sop…