HAMMOND - The Southeastern Louisiana football team officially opened fall practice Thursday morning with a two-hour workout in Strawberry Stadium.

The Lions hit the Strawberry Stadium turf at 6 a.m. and worked out in helmets in a 25-period session that featured work on the fundamentals.

“There were some good things and some bad things out there today,” Southeastern Louisiana coach Mike Lucas said. “There were some guys I wished would have come back in better shape, and I was disappointed in some of those that we?re going to be depending on.”

The majority of the team returned in shape with Lucas praising the offensive line for their summer work.

“We had a whole bunch of guys that came back in great shape,” Lucas said.

“The offensive line came back in awesome shape with great leadership by (senior center) Josh Penton through the summer program.”

Southeastern will return to practice at 6 a.m. Friday with a two-hour workout in helmets before working out in shells beginning Saturday.

McNeese State

COWBOYS START PRESEASON WORKOUTS: In Lake Charles, McNeese State opened Thursday morning, working out about 2 hours, 20 minutes in shorts and helmets.

Cowboys coach Matt Viator said that the session was a lively one and that he was pleased with the effort.

Of particular interest was the play at quarterback where returning letterman Cody Stroud went into camp as No. 1 with transfer Riley Dodge and redshirt freshman Will Briscoe behind him.

Viator said that at times during the workout the quarterbacks looked sharp and at other times a little rusty but that there was a lot of talent there with good competition.

The Cowboys will also practice in shorts and helmets Friday morning and will be in shorts, shoulder pads and helmets for a Saturday morning and a Sunday afternoon workout. Their first practice in full pads will be Monday morning.


DEMONS GET GOOD GRADE IN FIRST WORKOUT: In Natchitoches, in its first on-field workout of preseason camp Thursday, Northwestern State gave an “A-plus” performance and effort, said Demons coach Bradley Dale Peveto.

“You look forward to this day all summer and I’ll admit, as coaches our expectations go sky high and as it approaches you try to ratchet down to reality,” said Peveto. “I give my team an ‘A-plus’ today. There was great tempo, great continuity and carryover, and the ideal combination of enthusiasm and focus.”

Northwestern’s morning session involved the starters and many contenders for the two-deep chart, while the evening workout included 23 newcomers and other veterans who helped fill out positions and provided an introduction to the speed of Division I college football for the freshmen and transfers.

Returning starter Paul Harris, transfer Brad Henderson and redshirt freshman Don Canyon spearheaded the morning performance.

“Our quarterbacks were spot on,” said Peveto. “They made the throws, they made the reads, they ran the offense just like we want. Paul Harris looked super sharp. When those guys play at that level, you have a great chance to be very, very productive, and that’s what we got today.”

Both sessions in helmets and shorts lasted less than two hours. The Demons will resume practice Friday morning at 9:40 with the veterans and at 4:40 p.m. for the newcomers.

Louisiana Tech

PRACTICE STARTS MONDAY AS DYKES’ SECOND YEAR BEGINS: In Ruston, Louisiana Tech will have 100 players report to fall camp Sunday with the first practice of fall camp set for Monday.

The Bulldogs are entering their second season under head coach Sonny Dykes. Tech will open the season at Southern Miss on Sept. 3 in a nationally televised game on FSN at 9 p.m.

Sunday will be used for orientation meetings and moving into the dorms on campus.

The first practice of fall camp will be on at 6 p.m. Monday on the Tech practice fields with the players working out for about 90 minutes in shorts. On Thursday, Aug. 11, players will don pads for the first time this fall while Saturday, Aug. 13 marks the first day of two-a-days.