The first thing I noticed was again the size gains of another off-season in the FIU weight room -- which by the way is now looking like a Division I weight training center filled from wall to wall with free weights, machines and everything you need to get in shape. Nice touch with the Panther eyes on one wall and a huge FIU logo on the south wall. A lot of these players looked like they spent their summer in there and in bowls of Cuban potajes.
The first two players I had to do a double take to recognize were receivers Jairus Williams (left) and Jacob Younger. If you follow FIU football, you'll know that each of those players arrived at FIU with not too much meat on their bones. They are both now close to 200 pounds and with muscles. Jairus, in particular at 6-5, now looks like a legitimate D-I receiver and could be a serious threat in the red zone this fall.
During the 7-on-7s, Jairus made a nice catch in traffic over the middle from Wesley Carroll, who looks like he ate some of the potajes that this team has consumed in the offseason. By that I mean, the healthier Cuban potajes like "Ajiaco".
WC looks to have a little more velocity on his passes this year. Turtle might take him from MC after football season over for some work on the pitching mound. Throughout the workout, WC was throwing darts.
Yes, I know Rutgers is still 2 months away, but my first impression of Willis Wright (right) on the FIU Stadium field is that dude is ready to play right now. The first thing about WW is his presence. You see him line up outside and he just has the look of a playmaker -- big, strong and Allstate might recruit him later because he also showed some good hands on a couple of passes thrown his way.
Khambrel McGee looks like an Anthony Gaitor-clone. KM showed some feisty play on pass D and made life miserable for the receiver he was covering. Like WW, Khambrel also looks like he can help out this season.
A bigger Jonathan Faucher made a couple of catches on mid-range passes. Faucher could give FIU a double TE threat with Dudley LaPorte. DLP looked good coming off that foot injury.
Any concerns about Rupert Bryan's health should be alleviated after watching him go one on one with Jeremy Jermin. Jermin looks like he will be a handful for opposing offensive linemen, but on this morning Rupert held his own and then some.
One defender that had a big day was DE Isame Faciane, who with his speed and quickness got around the corner four times.
Again, the entire team did not participate and nobody was in pads, but others that caught my attention were: Glen Coleman with his elusiveness. Kedrick Rhodes has the size and skills to get a good number of carries this season. Darian Mallary has bulked up. Jake Medlock is a big dude for a QB. The majority of the newcomers were there with Jordan White and Jason Fitch expected to join the team in the next week or so.
Punter Josh Brisk finished the morning with a 60-yard punt that had his teammates let out some "Ooohs, aaahs".
Working on getting off-season weight room gains for you on the next post.