Thundering Herd practice ‘big hit’with coach Snyder

Published 9:55 am Sunday, April 5, 2009

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. — They were a hootin’ and hollerin’. And hittin’.

The first spring practice in pads brought the popular “Hoot-N-Holler” drill, but the entire practice as a whole pleased head coach Mark Snyder in one other way.

“I thought there was a lot of hitting,” said Snyder. “It was good to see. There were a lot of hard licks.”

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It was only the third spring practice for the Herd but Snyder said that practicing in pads allowed the assistant coaches to do a lot more work.

“There was good teaching out there today. There was a lot of good teaching out there today,” said Snyder.

“It’s a progression. You’ve heard me talk about it before. Once you put the pads on you have to learn how to carry your pads. You’re carrying more weight and you’re more restricted. We got a little lethargic at the end.”

During the intensity and enthusiasm of the “Hoot-N-Holler” drill, a couple of small fights broke out. Snyder said it was typical of any kind of football practice where hitting is involved.

“That’s part of it. You play this game with emotion,” said Snyder.

With a lot of veteran players returning, Snyder said practice went smoothly with a few exceptions involving new players.

The area he seemed most focused on was at wide receiver.

“We need to stay healthy. We need to get them reps,” said Snyder.

Marshall has 11 more practices scheduled with workouts concluding on Saturday, April 25, with the Green-White spring game at 3 p.m.

Some practices will be open to the public and others just for the media. All practices and times are subject to change. The first scrimmage is scheduled for Tuesday afternoon.

Snyder was happy at the large turnout of fans for the first practice in pads. He said fan attendance adds a lot to the practice’s atmosphere.

“We’ll open up a lot more practices for them,” said Snyder.