Aug 5, 2014 10:47 PM by UL Sports Information
LAFAYETTE - Head coach Mark Hudspeth took his entire team out on the practice field for the first time in fall drills as the Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns practiced for over two hours on Tuesday on the Ragin' Cajuns practice fields.
After going through a split-squad workout to open camp on Monday, the Ragin' Cajuns continued to work in shorts and helmets before putting on shoulder pads for the first time beginning Wednesday. The Ragin' Cajuns will return with shoulder pads on Thursday before putting on full pads for the first time Friday. The team will cap off its first week of camp on Saturday with a light kicking session in the morning before scrimmaging for the first time in a 6 p.m. workout.
"When they hit the gate, you could tell they had a little step in them," Hudspeth said of his team's second day of workouts. "They were locked in during team meetings, the coaches did a good job of getting them mentally ready to attack practice. Overall, it was one of our best days."
With a veteran team that has won 27 overall games and is one of six schools nationally to win a bowl game in the past three season, the Ragin' Cajuns approach to camp has been business as usual in terms of installation.
"It's been very similar," Hudspeth said. "The installation may have been a little different, but the overall aspect of it has been the same. We're trying to make sure get the right amount of rest, the right amount of preparation, the right amount of weight room time ... hydration, nutrition. It's a constant struggle to have the right balance of everything, but I feel like we've got a good camp."
Louisiana will work out in full gear for the first time on Friday, and will hold its first scrimmage of fall camp with a 90-play workout in Cajun Field. Many of the veterans are expected to see action, with the bulk of the work coming from players looking to move up the depth chart.
"The veterans will get some work, but we've got a lot of second-teamers that will have to contribute, so we want to get them a lot of work," Hudspeth said. "When you come to practice, you either get better or get worse ... even the veterans. They have to work to stay sharp, and even veterans have room for improvement. They want to become better. They want to take it to the next level and if you want to get there, you have to do the little things. It's all about work and good preparation."
With Terrance Broadway, a Davey O'Brien Watch List candidate, entrenched as the Ragin' Cajuns starting quarterback, Brooks Haack has firmly etched his name as Broadway's backup after serving in a similar role season.
Haack, a redshirt sophomore, played in five games for the Ragin' Cajuns last season and started in the team's regular-season finale at South Alabama in place of an injured Broadway. With the experience gained through last season and a strong spring practice, Haack will continue to improve and provide the Ragin' Cajuns with a solid option behind Broadway.
"Brooks is our solid backup, he threw some nice balls today, he's got confidence and he knows our offensive system," Hudspeth said. "I feel confident in Brooks. He's really grown. The playing time that he got last year, at least got his feet wet. He's been in the fire, so when his name is called it won't be the first time he's in a game as it was last year. He'll continue to improve with every scrimmage and every rep he gets."