Notes from Wednesday's football practice in the sun, then rain, erstwhile chewy heat that reminded coach Mario Cristobal of a practice while he played for Amsterdam in the World League of American Football:
"One day it was scorching out there," Cristobal said. "Then it started raining, then it started snowing."
Wide receiver Rockey Vann continued in non-contact work, and Cristobal said Vann, who he was worried about missing half or even the whole season, could be back in a week and a half. Offensive lineman Ceedrick Davis participated in practice Tuesday and Wednesday. They're easing him back in after he's missed time with a back problem.
During the hitch/wide receiver screen blocking drills, wide receiver Glenn Coleman had the most impressive block, taking his cornerback into the pursuit path of the other corner then dumping him. Sam Miller had the best rep among the defensive backs, eluding his block so quickly, he jumped the route.
Practice began with the "board drill" or "hamburger drill." I think the offense won overall because running back Robert Boswell got semi-carried out of the end zone by several celebratory offensive players like Leon Taylor at the end of the last Playmakers game.
I asked about defensive end Tourek Williams last few days of practice. I had the sense that , last week, Paul Crawford might've pulled ahead of Williams, of whom the coaching stafff expects a great deal. Cristobal complimented Williams last few days, then went on to talk about the entire defensive end rotation.
"Tourek, Paul (Crawford), Greg Hickman, James Jones and the two young cats we've brought in, Denzel Perine and Giovani Francois, we're really trying to find out what's the best combination when we're facing certain personnel groups," he said. "So, we're mixing and matching those guys, so they can play both defensive end positions without a hiccup."
Long snapper Brandon Taylor, the freshman transfer from LSU, has begun practicing with the team. Keep your money on Mitch McCluggage as the long snapper.
As anticipated for the last couple of weeks, the baseball team hired Drew French, who has spendt the last four years at Alabama, as pitching coach. French had been at Bama four years.
FIU was picked to finish third in the Sun Belt's East Division behind conference powers Middle Tennessee State and Western Kentucky, in the preseason coaches' poll. Andrea Lakovic and Jovana Bjelica were named to the preseason All-Sun Belt team. The volleyball season opens Friday against Fairfield in the Cal Molten Classic at Berkeley. I'll have a longer preseason post on the volleyball team tomorrow.
Sorry about a no-post day yesterday. Even though it was technically my day off, I was cranking up a late night blog when listening to my visiting mother yammer about people and relatives I don't know slowed me down. The fatigue I've been outrunning for three weeks like I'm in the Mod Squad opening credits caught me. Sack, loss of blog.
FIU athletes, I'm only going to write this once: when you're on Twitter, especially if you have FIU in your handle, you're representing yourself, your team, your university, your mother, father, sisters, brothers, your whole family and your friends. You might want to remember that.
Speaking of mothers, fathers, sisters and brothers....