A UC Football Email Exchange.

Justin Williams covers UC sports for The Athletic. He and I exchanged emails this week about the season and the state of the program.  The entire back and forth is published in The Athletic...

Mo: Let’s start with the overall general theme of fall camp. When Luke Fickell got the gig at UC, there was an immediate focus on improving the overall level of physicality and fitness with the returning players while the staff hit the ground running in recruiting. I had a chance to go to two practices at Higher Ground last summer, and you could immediately sense not just a more hands-on and intense approach from the new head coach – although merely staying awake through practice would be departure from the Tommy Tuberville era – but you could really sense that more than schemes and X’s and O’s, the primary focus was on being more physical and having more stamina. The problem is, I really didn’t see those things manifest themselves once the season began. What’s camp been like this year? And will Fickell’s second team be able to answer the call to be in better shape collectively than his first?

Justin: Fitness level is tough to gauge, especially since I wouldn’t consider myself a specimen of upstanding physical vigor, so who am I to judge? But I went to the majority of practices at Higher Ground, and each one featured near constant movement and motion from one drill to the next. Guys were clearly working hard. On the first day, there were the usual handful of players on the sideline projectile vomiting like it was an episode of Fear Factor, but that ended quickly. Plus, the team appeared to escape camp in relatively good health. Freshman tight end Josh Whyle was the only notable player to suffer a notable injury (clavicle), and it should only keep him out the first month or so. A few other guys were limited, but it seemed precautionary. So as an outside observer, it looked as if Fickell and staff did a good job of getting the team in shape while also keeping them healthy, which is really all one can ask for out of preseason. Whether that will translate onto the field, we have to wait and see, but if not, it won’t be for lack of pushing and working players in camp, in my opinion.

The physicality aspect is intriguing though, and a clear area of focus and improvement......

To read the entire exchange, go to The Athletic

(Photo: Getty Images)

Mo Egger

Mo Egger

Mo Egger delivers his unique take on sports on Cincinnati's ESPN 1530! Read more

title

Content Goes Here